Antoine Davis, Dwayne Cohill headline our All-League teams
With another Horizon League regular season in the books, HoriZone Roundtable writers and podcast staff came together to make our picks for the 2023 Horizon League All-League teams. One look at the teams and it’s clear that voters were drawn to the big shot takers who put the finishing touches on major victories. Given how little separation there is between half of the league, this shouldn’t come as a surprise. There’s plenty of value in the other intangibles but if you’re down three with seconds to play and you don’t have a guy who can deliver those points, you’re not going to win.
As has been the case so often since Antoine Davis stepped foot on campus at Detroit Mercy, he found himself in a Player of the Year race against someone who got a lot more wins but nowhere near the counting stat production. In a less common occurrence, Davis won that battle over Youngstown State’s Dwayne Cohill in large part because those numbers hit a level that was impossible to deny.
Here’s a look at who’s joining Davis and Cohill on our All-League teams:
|*Antoine Davis, G, Detroit Mercy||28.1 PPG, 3.0 RPG, 3.5 APG|
|Dwayne Cohill, G, YSU||17.8 PPG, 3.5 RPG, 4.9 APG, 59.2 EFG%|
|Jalen Moore, G, Oakland||19.6 PPG, 3.8 RPG, 5.6 APG|
|Marques Warrick, G, NKU||19.0 PPG, 2.4 RPG, 2.9 APG|
|Trey Calvin, Wright State||20.3 PPG, 2.9 RPG, 3.8 APG|
Antoine Davis led the NCAA in scoring, and picked it up even further to average 30.1 points per game in Horizon League play on his way to being selected as our Horizon League Player of the Year. Davis has suffered from Detroit Mercy’s team success for years, but he’s taken his production to such an incredible level down the stretch that he narrowly earned the pick despite the Titans finishing tied for eighth place in the league.
Dwayne Cohill was the unquestioned star of the Horizon League’s regular season champion. He led the Youngstown State in scoring and led the league in assists while compiling insane efficiency stats. Simply put: Youngstown State has three other players that we picked All-League, and without Dwayne Cohill they are not the Horizon League champions.
Jalen Moore missed the midseason All-League team after struggling with injuries and a difficult schedule during non-league play. When he returned to form, he had to take on more of a scoring role than in previous seasons. That and a solid fifth place finish were enough to catapult Moore all the way from being a borderline pick to being a solid first teamer. Against league opponents, Moore finished second behind Antoine Davis in scoring with 22.6 points per game. He led the league in assists overall, and finished second to Cohill by a tenth of an assist per game in Horizon League play.
Marques Warrick further improved his status as Northern Kentucky’s go-to scorer despite last year’s other top scorers Sam Vinson and Trevon Faulkner returning to the roster. As a freshman, Warrick was the number two option behind Faulkner. As a sophomore, he overtook Faulkner. In his third year on the team, Warrick was the unquestioned go-to-guy to the point that he nearly averaged as much as Faulkner and Vinson combined. With NKU’s defensive-minded strategy, having a guy like Warrick who can take over when the league’s seventh most efficient offense needs him to is crucial. Like the players above him, Warrick regularly found himself hitting mind-blowing shots in crunch time for an NKU team that tied for second place.
Trey Calvin takes the final spot on our All-League team, in large part due to the same big shot abilities that put the other four players here. He finished the regular season as one of two players averaging 20 over the course of the whole year in the Horizon League, and was the primary piece to the team’s promising non-league start.
|Tristan Enaruna, F, Cleveland State||15.1 PPG, 6.6 RPG|
|BJ Freeman, G/F, Milwaukee||17.0 PPG, 5.1 RPG, 3.0 APG|
|Jarred Godfrey, G, PFW||18.1 PPG, 5.3 RPG, 3.6 APG|
|Enoch Cheeks, G, Robert Morris||16.0 PPG, 4.5 RPG, 3.4 APG, 1.9 SPG, 1.2 BPG|
|Trey Townsend, F, Oakland||16.4 PPG, 7.7 RPG|
When Tristan Enaruna snuck onto my midseason All-League team while averaging 10.9 points per game I commented that if Cleveland State could keep winning and Enaruna could further establish himself as their go-to player he could maintain that status even if players like Jalen Moore erupted and claimed spots during league play. Cleveland State kept winning, and Enaruna’s scoring erupted. As a result, he’s a no-brainer All-League pick who could find himself even higher than this when the official results come out today.
BJ Freeman was Milwaukee’s most willing shooter early on, but was struggling to find his shot and didn’t necessarily look like he was going to turn out to be the team’s featured player by the end of the year. After a brief stint on the bench, Freeman came back ready to take over and showed that not only is he Milwaukee’s best player but one of the league’s top talents. Yesterday, he was named Horizon League Player of the Week for the third time after a 31-point performance to clinch the 2-seed in the Horizon League Tournament was his less impressive showing of the weekend.
Jarred Godfrey would have likely jumped Enaruna, Freeman, and possibly even some First Team picks if Purdue Fort Wayne had lived up to our lofty preseason expectations for them. As has been the case since Purdue Fort Wayne joined the Horizon League, Godfrey proved to be one of the most versatile players in the league. While he was likely dinged some for Purdue Fort Wayne’s eight place finish, his placement in the middle of the second team is a clear sign that our voters recognized the parity in the league.
Enoch Cheeks was our pick for Horizon League defensive player of the year after finishing top five in both blocks and steals as a 6-foot-3 guard. But that was far from the only way that he stuffed the state sheet: Cheeks was also among RMU’s leaders with 16.0 points, 4.5 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game. Like Godfrey, Cheeks is a guy whose all-around game easily could’ve made him a First Team selection if RMU won just a few more games in Horizon League play.
Trey Townsend was carrying the load for Oakland through its rough non-league schedule to the point that even though the team was closer to Green Bay and IUPUI than it was to the rest of the pack, he was still a contender to finish higher than this on the All-League team. Jalen Moore’s return to health meant a much more successful performance in Horizon League play for Oakland, but it also cut into Townsend’s production that it hindered his ability to rise up to the First Team All-League on an individual level. Still, Townsend put forth an outstanding year and our voters considered him one of the best 10 players in the league.
|Kahliel Spear, F, Robert Morris||15.7 PPG, 8.2 RPG|
|Adrian Nelson, F, YSU||13.3 PPG, 9.5 RPG|
|Malek Green, F, YSU||13.9 PPG, 7.1 RPG|
|Brandon Noel, F, Wright State||12.8 PPG, 8.7 RPG|
|Brandon Rush, G, YSU||14.1 PPG, 39.8 3FG%|
Kahliel Spear is likely another reason that Enoch Cheeks didn’t get a little more support on our All-League team, as his impressive production split a lot of the RMU vote. Spear narrowly missed leading RMU in scoring with 15.7 points while easily leading the team with 8.2 rebounds per game. He likely could have joined his teammate on the second team — or knocked Cheeks down to this spot on the third team — if not for the recognition that Cheeks got for his big plays on the defensive end.
Adrian Nelson, Malek Green and Brandon Rush all transferred in to Youngstown State and gave the team the immediate jolt that it needed to lead the Penguins to the school’s winningest season ever and its first ever Regular Season League (or Conference) Title. Nelson and Green provided the league’s strongest all-around post duo, while Rush provided another perimeter scorer that regularly punished defenses that tried to give too much attention to one of the team’s three other stars.
Brandon Noel continues Scott Nagy’s factory of star post players who redshirt as freshmen. Noel was the lone player to average a double-double in Horizon League play, fully delivering on a debut season that had been two years in the making. In his first year on a college court, Noel shoed a consistency you’d expect of a much more experienced player on his way to becoming our pick for Freshman of the Year.