Videos by OutKick
What price fame?
Oh, about $27,500.
Make that check payable to: the College Basketball Invitational. They take everybody, including 14-19 Detroit Mercy that has lost three of its last four and finished eighth in the Horizon League at 9-11.
The CBI is considering inviting Detroit Mercy, which was eliminated from the Horizon League Tournament by No. 1 seed Youngstown State, 71-66, in Youngstown, Ohio, on Thursday night.
But Detroit Mercy is not your typical sub-.500 team, though it is also not even a hot team. It has lost three of its last four games.
PETE MARAVICH LIVES, OR HIS RECORD DOES FOR NOW
But what Detroit Mercy has is more than a prayer. It has the second leading career scorer in college basketball history in guard Antoine Davis, who has scored 3,664 points in his five seasons as a Titan.
Iconic basketball magician guard Pistol Pete Maravich scored 3,667 in his three seasons from 1967-70 at LSU. The Tigers reached the National Invitation Tournament final four in New York City in 1970 and finished 22-10 – 13-5 in the Southeastern Conference for second place to then-No. 1 Kentucky.
“We do take teams that are below .500, depending on the circumstances,” CBI director Rick Giles told OutKick on Friday afternoon. “Not every year, but we have for different reasons. We have invited Power Five teams known for their fan base and tradition and teams with star players. We want a competitive tournament but also one that generates fan interest.”
Antonio Davis Is Clearly A Draw
Davis drew 5,584 on Thursday night to Youngstown State’s Beeghly Center – its largest crowd in a decade. He also had much to do with a fight between Detroit Mercer and Youngstown State after the game as he trash talked throughout the game. So, there’s that for even more interest – you know, like hockey.
If an invitee to the tournament can come up with the $27,500, it is in. The 16-team tournament is held at the Ocean Center arena in Dayton Beach, Florida, from March 18-22. The field will be announced after the NCAA Tournament’s Selection Sunday and the NIT’s selections on March 19. Since Detroit Mercy does not have a prayer for either of those, its entry into the CBI could come very soon.
Detroit Mercy is a private Roman Catholic school of 5,000 students that is a low-major college basketball program. So, pass that collection plate!
Davis scored 22 points in the Titans’ loss Thursday night – just four short of breaking Maravich’s record. So, the CBI and Detroit Mercy can be a part of history in the opening minutes of the game. It would be like watching the Kentucky Derby – instant gratification. And maybe the revolution will be televised on ESPN.
All CBI statistics count toward NCAA records, NCAA director of Media Coordination and Statistics David Worlock confirmed to OutKick on Friday afternoon. So if Davis scores four, he breaks Maravich’s mark.
ANTOINE DAVIS COULD BE THE NEXT ROGER MARIS
“I was a couple of points short of the record,” Davis said after the game. “I saw that I was really close, and I had a chance to tie. But I was more worried about us winning the game than anything.”
With the win, Youngstown State (24-8) advanced to the Horizon League Tournament semifinals on Monday. With two more wins, it reaches the NCAA Tournament with the Horizon’s automatic bid.
“The NCAA Tournament was the goal,” Davis said. “I wouldn’t have a problem with it (the CBI tournament). I’m sure none of my teammates would have a problem with it.”
Detroit Mercy coach Mike Davis, who is Antoine’s father and the former Indiana coach who took the Hoosiers to the Final Four in 2002 after Bobby Knight’s firing, would like another game.
Antoine Davis Missed A Three To Tie Record Near The Buzzer
“If they want to play, we’ll play,” Davis said. “If they don’t want to play, and it’s time to move on, we won’t play.”
Davis finished 7-of-26 from the field in the loss to Youngstown State and missed 12 of 16 from three-point range. He played on after injuring his shoulder in a fall with 8:02 to play. With four seconds left, he missed a meaningless three-pointer as far as the game’s outcome. But it would have tied Maravich’s record at 3,667.
“People would have put an asterisk by his name if he would’ve broken it,” Davis’ dad said. “Pistol Pete was in a world of his own, and there will never be another Pistol Pete in college basketball.”