The Horizon League announced its Postseason Awards and All-League teams on Tuesday, just hours after the release of the HoriZone Roundtable All-League teams. Like last year, I wanted to take a moment to compare the two teams.
Our voters and the Horizon League coaches agreed on three of the five awards and were in complete agreement on three members of each All-League Team. In total, we agreed on 13 of the 15 same All-League performers, with minor squabbles on overall rank.
Let’s compare the picks:
|Award||HoriZone RT||Horizon League|
|Player of the Year||Loudon Love||Loudon Love|
|Coach of the Year||Dennis Gates||Dennis Gates|
|Freshman of the Year||Marques Warrick||Marques Warrick|
|DPOY||Torrey Patton||Tre Gomillion|
|Sixth Man of the Year||Josh Jefferson||Matt Johnson|
Coach of the Year and Freshman of the Year were the most decisive victories in our award vote. Dennis Gates was the only coach to earn multiple votes, while Warrick was a unanimous selection for Freshman of the Year. Needless to say, there was very little surprise with the results of those two awards.
While there was some speculation that Antoine Davis may wind up winning the Player of the Year vote due to Tanner Holden creating a split vote with Loudon Love among voters who wanted to pick the best player on the best team, Love came away with the award. Love and Davis were the only players to earn a single vote in our poll.
In a near-complete reversal from our Coach of the Year vote, there were a number of candidates for Defensive Player of the Year in the running until the final couple votes were cast. One of those candidates was the league’s official winner Tre Gomillion. With all of that in mind, even though our Defensive Player of the Year didn’t make the All-Defensive Team, we don’t have too much to argue here.
The discrepancy in Sixth Man of the Year voting seems like it probably came down to the parameters put on candidates. We were pretty lax, allowing players who played less than half of all league games to be eligible. With that said, Jefferson was nowhere near that in league play. He started just five of the team’s 20 league games, but did start all four of Green Bay’s non-league games. In all likelihood, that removed him from contention for the award.
|HoriZone RT||Horizon League|
|Loudon Love||Loudon Love|
|Antoine Davis||Antoine Davis|
|Jalen Moore||Jalen Moore|
|Marcus Burk||Tanner Holden|
|Naz Bohannon||Torrey Patton|
Obviously Love and Davis were Consensus First Team All-Horizon League picks. The third player to gain that recognition was Oakland’s Jalen Moore. In addition to being the league’s assist leader by a wide margin, Moore spent much of league play averaging over 20 points per game before a late slump landed him at 18.3 points per game.
Marcus Burk was easily the player with the biggest discrepancy between our picks and the league’s, finishing above Moore on our team and on the Horizon League’s second team. The senior was not only productive – averaging 22.5 points per game in Horizon League play – but sickeningly effective with an overall field goal percentage near 50 despite taking over a third of his shots from long range.
The final spot on our All-League First Team likely opened up when A.J. Bramah opted to put his name into the transfer portal and he was removed from contention by several of our voters. Bohannon jumped up into the fifth spot on our team, but Horizon League coaches opted to make him a second team selection instead. Torrey Patton was our Defensive Player of the Year and as previously mentioned Holden played well enough there were thoughts that some might give him Player of the Year votes, so it’s hard to get too mad about either pick.
|HoriZone RT||Horizon League|
|Amari Davis||Amari Davis|
|Grant Basile||Grant Basile|
|Trevon Faulkner||Trevon Faulkner|
|Tanner Holden||Marcus Burk|
|Torrey Patton||Naz Bohannon|
Adding a 3-point shot allowed Amari Davis to maintain similar efficiency while his stats increased across the board. That stat increase was made far more impressive by the fact that it coincided with a shift from one of the top ten fastest tempos in Division I to the eleventh fastest tempo in the Horizon League.
Grant Basile earned Second Team All-League honors from both our voters and the league coaches after averaging 14.6 points and 6.8 rebounds per game for Wright State. After fighting his way into the starting lineup early in league play, Basile looked like the best player on the Raiders at times as the season went on.
When writing up our All-League picks, I felt the need to justify having the Player of the Year and two second team come from a team that didn’t run away with the league. Then coaches turned around and gave the Raiders the Player of the year and another Top 5 performer while still keeping that Second Team All-League performer. Even with a short bench, that one would be tough to argue.
Patton’s consistent play for Horizon League co-Champion Cleveland State earned him a spot on our All-League Second Team. As one of the voters who did select Patton First Team All-League, I was still surprised to see him make the top team given that they didn’t even select him as a member of the league’s All-Defensive Team.
|HoriZone RT||Horizon League|
|Marques Warrick||Marques Warrick|
|Daniel Oladapo||Daniel Oladapo|
|Jarred Godfrey||Jarred Godfrey|
|Teyvion Kirk||Bul Kuol|
|A.J. Bramah||Te’Jon Lucas|
As with the first two teams, HoriZone Roundtable and the Horizon League were on the same page with three of five picks on the All-League Third Team. Freshman of the Year Marques Warrick, double-double machine Daniel Oladapo and Purdue Fort Wayne’s do-everything guard Jarred Godfrey earned Third Team honors in both votes.
As a Milwaukee alum, it was surprising to see Te’Jon Lucas make the coaches’ All-League team. Particularly since it was Teyvion Kirk who missed out. Lucas is an amazing player, but I’d have a hard time arguing that he had one of the top fifteen seasons in the league. The other thing that caught me off guard with the pick was that Teyvion Kirk is obviously the Flames best option, while there was a good deal of vote-splitting in our results between Lucas and teammate Deandre Gholston that caused both to fall below the threshold to make the team.
Like I said in the Sixth Man of the Year section, we were seemingly much more lax with our parameters than the league. I realized we were probably going to be at odds on the A.J. Bramah pick while I was writing the article for our All-League picks and noticed his statistics were no longer listed on the Horizon League’s statistics page. When he did play, he was elite. Bramah averaged 21.8 points and 11.4 rebounds per game in Horizon League play.
The league’s final All-League pick, Bul Kuol had an outstanding year for the Titans after transferring in from provisional Division I school California Baptist. He averaged 16.4 points and 5.2 rebounds per game playing next to Antoine Davis at Detroit Mercy. There’s no argument Kuol put up an incredibly impressive year, he was the Titans’ most productive player before Davis’ shots started falling and ended the regular season on a hot streak. It does feel strange that a player like Kirk – who frequently made the biggest impact for the Flames even when his shot wasn’t falling – was left off in favor of a second player for the fifth seeded Titans.