INDIANAPOLIS — Purdue Fort Wayne and Northern Kentucky were both tabbed as the preseason favorites to capture the 2022-23 Horizon League men’s basketball championship, while last season’s co-Player of the Year Antoine Davis of Detroit Mercy was selected the Preseason Player of the Year as the Horizon League released the 2022-23 #HLMBB Preseason Poll and All-League Teams on Wednesday. Voting was done by the League’s head coaches, sports information directors and select media.
Davis has led the Horizon League in scoring every season since joining the HL in 2018 as he finished last season with 23.9 points, good for third in the country, while also ranking second in the NCAA in 3-pointers made per game with just under four per contest. During Horizon League play, he finished with a League-best 24.1 points to go along with 4.6 assists. In four seasons with the Titans, Davis has scored 2,734 career points, tops in school history, second all-time in Horizon League history (180 away from first) and 22nd in NCAA history (266 away from becoming the 11th player in NCAA history to score 3,000 points). His 429 career 3-pointers are first in Horizon League history and 12th in NCAA history, 80 away from Fletcher Magee’s NCAA record of 509. Last season, Davis also became the first player in Horizon League history to be named a four-time All-League first selection. This marks the third time in his career Davis has been named the Preseason Player of the Year, having previously been selected in 2019 and 2021.
Purdue Fort Wayne and Northern Kentucky each totaled 394 total points to tie for the top spot in the poll. The Mastodons earned the most first-place votes of any team with 17 in just their third year in the HL after earning a co-regular season championship last season with a 15-6 League mark. The Norse tallied 15 first-place votes and were tabbed No. 1 in the preseason poll for the first time since joining the HL after earning the No. 3 seed and reaching the Horizon League championship game for the third time in four seasons.
Joining Davis on the Preseason All-Horizon League First Team are Northern Kentucky’s Marques Warrick, Oakland’s Jalen Moore, Jarred Godfrey of Purdue Fort Wayne and Dwayne Cohill of Youngstown State.
Warrick earned All-Horizon League Second Team honors last season after being named Freshman of the Year during the 2020-21 season as he averaged 16.8 points per game, made over two 3-pointers and shot 41 percent from the floor. During League play he was even better with 17.3 points per game and almost three triples per contest. Moore finished second in the nation in assists last season with 7.7 per game to go along with 15.5 points to be named to the All-League Second Team for the Golden Grizzlies. He recorded nine double-doubles last season and 10 double-digit assist performances. Godfrey was an All-League First Team performer a season ago for the co-regular season champions as he averaged 15.2 points with 2.2 3-pointers per game, a 45.6 percent field goal percentage, 3.9 assists and 1.9 steals per game, all good for top-10 rankings in the HL. Cohill finished top-10 in the HL in scoring for the Penguins last season with 14.9 points per game, including 15.9 points in League play, and shot over 45 percent from the floor en route to being tabbed an All-League Third Team honoree.
The Preseason All-Horizon League Second Team is led by last season’s Freshman of the Year Sam Vinson and teammate Trevon Faulkner of Northern Kentucky. Joining the duo are Wright State’s own tandem of Trey Calvin and former Horizon League Freshman of the Year Amari Davis, who returns to the HL after beginning his career at Green Bay, along with RMU’s Kahliel Spear, an All-League Third Team selection from a season ago.
Coming in third in the preseason poll with 329 total points and three first-place votes is Wright State who won the tournament title last year in Indianapolis and the school’s first NCAA tournament game, followed closely in fourth place by Oakland with 321 total votes and two first-place votes after earning the No. 5 seed in the championship last season.
Youngstown State is fifth in the preseason poll with 291 points and one first-place vote ahead of sixth-place Detroit Mercy with 268 total points and the final two first-place votes after earning the No. 6 seed at the championship last season. In seventh place in the poll is Cleveland State as the Vikings are coming off their second consecutive co-regular season championship with a new head coach in Daniyal Robinson. RMU is No. 8 in the preseason poll as it enters its third year in the HL.
Milwaukee came in ninth in the poll with 132 points led by first-year head coach Bart Lundy, followed by Green Bay with 111 and IUPUI with 49.
The regular season will start on Monday, Nov. 7, and Horizon League play is scheduled to begin on Thursday, Dec. 1. The 2023 Horizon League Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championships are scheduled to culminate at the Indiana Farmers Coliseum in Indianapolis March 6-7. More information on the championships can be found at HorizonLeague.com/Indy.