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BYU Comes Up Short In Pursuit Of Transfer Portal Guard Antoine Davis

May 9, 2022, 1:52 PM

Antoine Davis - Detroit - BYU...

CLEVELAND, OH - JANUARY 15: Detroit Mercy Titans guard Antoine Davis (0) during the second half of the men's college basketball game between the Detroit Mercy Titans and Cleveland State Vikings on January 15, 2022, at the Wolstein Center in Cleveland, OH. (Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

(Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

PROVO, Utah – BYU basketball was close but not close enough for one of the nation’s top transfer portal prospects.

Antoine Davis announced on Monday that he is returning to Detroit Mercy for his fifth and final collegiate season. Davis picked UDM over BYU, Kansas State, Maryland, and Georgetown.

Davis became a top priority for BYU’s portal recruiting efforts when he entered the transfer portal last month. The 6-foot-1 guard and the 22nd all-time leading scorer in college basketball history, took an official visit to Provo last month.

NIL played role in keeping Antoine Davis at Detroit Mercy

One of the big motivators for Davis to enter the transfer portal in the first place was potential Name, Image and Likeness (NIL) deals.

Last month, Davis’ father, Detroit head coach Mike Davis, brought up the importance of NIL in his son’s portal decision to The Detroit News, “You have a chance to make a half-million to a million dollars in NIL, and you put that money in the bank and you don’t spend it … let it sit for 10 years, that’s pretty impressive.”

Moments before Davis’ 1 p.m. (MT) announcement on Monday, Stadium’s Jeff Goodman reported that Davis had landed a one-year NIL agreement with a Chinese basketball manufacturer to produce custom “GlowBalls.” According to Goodman, “the deal could be worth in excess of six figures.”

After that, Davis announced that he was returning to Detroit with an edit that read, “I’m back.”

Leading up to Monday’s announcement, there was a quiet buzz that BYU was building momentum as one of the favorites to land the star guard who has averaged 24 points per game throughout his collegiate career.

BYU made a solid pitch to sell Davis that they could help him become college basketball’s all-time leading scorer. Pete Maravich holds the men’s college basketball record for scoring with 3,667 career points at LSU from 1967 to 1970. This season, Davis would need another 934 points to top Pistol Pete’s 52-year record.

BYU legend Jimmer Fredette even made a last-second pitch to Davis towards his alma mater by tweeting, “Let’s go my man! BYU is waiting for you!” But even Jimmer’s encouragement wasn’t enough.

Davis was reportedly “leaning towards” BYU basketball

The pitch BYU made to Davis reportedly left an impression as Goodman reported after Davis’ commitment to Detroit that the prolific scorer was “leaning towards BYU.” But noted, “NIL deals — which he will split with teammates — helped him decide to remain at [Detroit].”

BYU basketball has three scholarships available for the 2022-23 roster, so they will continue to remain active in the transfer portal.

Last Saturday, they received their first transfer portal commitment in the 2022 cycle picking up Coastal Carolina guard Rudi Williams.

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for KSLsports.com and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12–3 p.m.) on KSL Newsradio. Follow him on Twitter: @Mitch_Harper.

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BYU Comes Up Short In Pursuit Of Transfer Portal Guard Antoine Davis