The Mike Davis era at Detroit Mercy has pretty much gone by Murphy’s Law: everything that can go wrong…has. Year One was going to be rough, as Davis was hired late. Year Two had the post-season ban that was no fault of his own. Then the pandemic hit, and after two years of COVID cancellations, you have to think if UDM don’t lose five home games (four of them being easy match-ups), Davis and company might have gotten home count and a bye.
But on another rough night in Highland Heights, KY, the Titans were eliminated from the Horizon League tournament. Last season was on a buzzer-beater; this year was one of the worst shooting games I have seen from this team in a long time. Detroit Mercy had been playing well but were do for an off night. They came in still banged up, and the officiating did not help the bruised Titans.
Where does Detroit from here? Well, there is good news (almost) everyone will most likely be back.
The elephant in the room is will the Horizon League Co-Player of the Year return. Antoine Davis has given UDM everything but a trip to the dance. Rumors have been going around that he will stay. My gut says he will. I think there are records he wants to break, and he wants to go to the big dance with his dad. Does he ever make it to the NBA? I don’t know. I think he gets a look; he works hard and can shoot the lights out, but it will be an uphill battle for him, and I believe one more year in college won’t hurt.
In the gone category, no chance; they are staying.
Matt Johnson had a good year last year, but hee struggled at times this season. Unfortunately, he has exhausted his eligibility.
Willy Isiani will be 25 years old this summer, and he has been gone from his home country, going on six years in the fall. He’s 100% going back to Europe to play pro and be closer to home.
For Buay Koka, a rumor has popped up on the Titan message boards, and after talking to my sources, he is most likely not returning. He would be coming back for a sixth year of college, something many guys don’t really want to do. He also has not played a lot.
The big question mark is Antoine Davis. Mike Davis has alluded to him coming back, and AD has liked every tweet referring to him returning. He is most likely coming back for year 5. If he does, he has the chance to become all-time leading scorer in the horizon league, one of the top three-point shooters of all-time in college basketball. Given the number of games canceled the last two seasons and his sophomore season’s post-season eligibility issue, he has an excellent chance to break the horizon league and three-point records in around the same amount of games as the current holders. The main reason for him to come back is to go to the tournament with his dad and brother, which has been the goal all along.
The youngest Davis will have most of his supporting cast back as DJ Harvey, Madut Akec, Noah Waterman, Kevin McAdoo, and Kyle Legreair are all set to return. Jordan Phillips missed this entire season with eligibility and an ankle issue. He is scheduled to return. The coaching staff was expecting him to start when he became eligible.
Jeremy Shaw and Mohamad Sylla are the question marks returning from this year’s titan reserves. Shaw did not play much, and Sylla came on late and played sparingly in relief of Isiani. I have no idea what the two of them plan to do next season. The only need for the Titans is a post player; I expect them to get one in the transfer portal.