Detroit Mercy guard Antoine Davis finished his college career as a two-time Horizon League Player of the Year and was a first-team All-Horizon League player five times, but fell just four points short of breaking the record for Pete Maravich all-time scoring.
Davis had five seasons with the Detroit Mercy, and in his final season, the Titans went 14-19 missing out on the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament for the 10th straight season, not counting the pandemic-affected 2019-20 season. of coronavirus. .
Davis’ chances of breaking the record ended when the College Basketball Invitational (CBI) was unable to invite the Detroit Mercy to its 16-team postseason tournament.
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«I’m upset about it,» Davis told the Associated Press on Monday. «I feel like I was cheated out of something that I can never get back. I think it’s selfish, and weird, for people to email or call the CBI to say we shouldn’t be in the tournament because they didn’t.» I don’t want him to break the record.
«But there’s nothing to keep your head down for. I still feel like I’m the best scorer of my generation, especially finishing second to him.»
Rick Giles, the president of the Gazelle Group that runs the CBI, denied that the tournament had the NCAA record in mind when it decided to leave the Detroit Mercy off the field.
«We’ve gotten unsolicited emails and voicemails about the Detroit Mercy and some have said we never want Pete Maravich’s record to be broken,» Giles told the AP. «The decision we made was not solely based on whether or not we wanted him to break the record.»
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Jason Maravich, Pete’s son, told the AP that he had no problem with Davis breaking the record but doing so in a lower-level tournament.
«I think it’s a terrible look,» Jason Maravich said. «Your season should end if you’re 14-19. This situation is very personal and sensitive for me. But to be clear, I’m not mad at Antoine Davis and I have nothing bad to say about Antoine Davis. My beef is with these tournaments».
Pete Maravich played three collegiate seasons with LSU from 1967 to 1970. He broke the scoring record originally set by Cincinnati’s Oscar Robertson. He scored 3,667 points in 83 games. Davis played in 144 games and scored 3,664 points. He received an additional year of eligibility due to COVID.
Titans coach Mike Davis, who is also Antoine’s father, said a postseason tournament would have given previously injured players a chance to play during the season.
«People were trying to paint a picture of us that wasn’t true,» added Mike Davis. «The painted picture was that we were trying to buy a record. The CBI was never going to let us in because of the backlash. The PS8 had teams pulling out, saying they wouldn’t play if we were going to be in the tournament.
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«It’s disappointing that people called our school president and athletic director and the people who run these tournaments to say not to let us in. We had to let it slide.»
Associated Press contributed to this report.