Detroit – Antoine Davis’ surprising decision to relocate from the Detroit Mercy, where he was coached by his father for four years, was made, at least in part, because of the opportunities that potentially helped him by name, image and likeness Could have been provided (NIL) rules, Mike Davis told The News.
Mike Davis said there’s a good chance Antoine Davis could earn well into the six figures on a zero deal at a more high-profile school than Detroit Mercy, where there are no current sponsorship deals for the players.
Since Antoine Davis made his announcement Thursday, he has heard from at least 17 schools, and indirectly, through his father, from many others. Already known schools contacted: Alabama, Auburn, Central Florida, Cincinnati, Georgetown, Georgia Tech, Hofstra, Kansas, Kansas State, Kentucky, LSU, Maryland, Memphis, Minnesota, Ohio State, Purdue and South Carolina . Antoine has yet to schedule an official visit.
“If I wasn’t their coach, I would have told them to do what they did,” Mike Davis told The News on Saturday. “You have a zero chance of making half a million to a million dollars, and you put that money in the bank and you don’t spend it…let it sit for 10 years, that’s pretty impressive.
“It’s hard to turn it down.”
23-year-old Antoine Davies played four seasons for the Titans, and this past season became the program’s all-time leading scorer. With a fifth season ruined by the COVID-19 pandemic, he will have a chance to challenge for the NCAA’s all-time Division I scoring record.
He was a first-team All-Horizon League in all four years, and was a co-league player this past season.
For several weeks, Mike Davis believed that Antoine would return to the Detroit Mercy for his final season, and Antoine had the same idea – until recently. There was zero factor, but along with the desire to test your game at the highest levels, there was also the opportunity to play in an exciting environment that is not part of the equation at Callihan Hall.
Antoine Davis’ decision took the college hoops world by surprise, and yes, that includes his own father.
“You know, it all came out of nowhere to be honest with you,” Mike Davis said. “I’m at a loss for words to be honest with you.”
Antoine Davis, Mike said, is “both happy and sad.”
And how about dad?
“I think it’s about 60-40,” said Mike Davis, bowing sadly.
Coincidentally, on the day of Antoine Davis’ announcement, the Davis family went out for a birthday dinner. It wasn’t strange, Mike said, except for Antoine’s cell phone was going off every few moments.
With inquiries from aspiring coaches across the country, Mike Davis’s phone is also going off.
“Maybe 25 to 30,” Mike Davis said. “Don’t know how they get your number, but they get it.”
The departure of Antoine Davis leaves a big void at the Detroit Mercy, where he averages between 26.1 and 23.9 points each year as one of the nation’s top 3-point shooters. There have been several notable returners, including forward Madut Akek, who averaged 12.7 points (second only to Davis on the team) and seven rebounds, guards Kevin McAdoo and DJ Harvey, and swingman Noah Waterman.
But it’s going to take new recruits, ideally transfers, to replace all that scoring for the Titans, who were 26-26 the last two seasons after Davis went 19-43 in the first two seasons – When he was hired late and got a slow start on the recruiting path for Year 1, and struggled to recruit for Year 2 with the program on probation for academic issues prior to the entire staff and roster.
Davis still has three years left on his contract, so there’s still time to get the Detroit Mercy in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2012. On Davis’s last three stops, he each took them to the NCAA Tournament, making nine appearances in 18 seasons. , He still plans to bring the Titans there, although it will be bitter.
Mike Davis said, “He wanted to come into the NCAA Tournament in such a bad way. He had a great career here.” “It’s just been a big blow. I’m his father and I’m his coach, so it’s just a fine line. … He told me he didn’t want to play for anyone other than me. … But when Zero talk popped up and popped up, so he was like, ‘Whoa.’
“You know, it’s just crazy.”
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