College notes: Detroit Mercy hoops to feature almost all-new roster under Mike Davis

Tony Paul
The Detroit News
New Detroit Mercy basketball coach Mike Davis is putting the finishing touches on his roster and coaching staff.

Detroit — There's rebuilding, and then there's what Mike Davis is tasked with at Detroit Mercy — which is, essentially, tearing down the whole darn house and starting all over.

The first-year Detroit Mercy head men's basketball coach has just three players offically on scholarship for the 2018-19 season, with the team's season opener less than three months away.

Those three players are forwards Cole Long and Gerald Blackshear Jr. and guard Josh McFolley, the latter who had planned to transfer out following Bacari Alexander's firing but had a change of heart, probably because his options were limited entering his senior season.

And, yeah, that appears to be it.

Guard Jermaine Jackson Jr., the son of the former interim coach, is transferring, as are guards Corey Allen (Georgia State) and Bass Ollie, and forward Jack Ballantyne. Also believed to be moving on from the program are forwards Tariiq Jones, Malik Eichler and Musial Gjysma, and guards Jacob Joubert and Ed Carter III. Forwards Jaleel Hogan and Roschon Prince, guard DeShawndre Black and center Isaiah Jones exhausted their eligibility, and swingman Kam Chatman left early for the NBA Draft (and was undrafted).

There are eight players who have committed to Detroit Mercy's 2018-19 class, but the paperwork isn't official yet. It is supposed to be in a couple weeks, with the first day of the fall semester.

Those players include: 6-foot-8 shooting forward Harrison Curry, from Pensacola (Fla.) State College; Jarred Rosser, a 6-6 forward from Gainesville, Fla.; Marquis Moore, a 6-6 forward from Los Angeles; Darrell Riley Jr., a 5-9 point guard from Mississippi Valley State who pulled his commitment to Chicago State; Jacob Holland, a 6-4 guard from Fresno State and Otero Junior College; Tra'Quan Knight, a 6-3 combo guard from Shelton State College in Alabama and another Pensacola, Fla., kid; and Antoine Davis, a 6-2 point guard and Davis' son. Davis is currently slotted for a walk-on spot, but don't be surprised if he ends up on scholarship, given there should be some available, and he's pretty darn good. The eighth player, 6-foot-9 forward Willy Isiani from the Republic of Georgia, committed Tuesday night, according to multiple reports.

Davis, 57, the former head coach at Indiana, UAB and Texas Southern, also is putting the finishing touches on his coaching staff, which should be official in the coming days.

Tracy Dildy, the recently fired head coach at Chicago State, as well as Davis' son, Mike Davis Jr., have been on campus and working in their official roles, even though an announcement hasn't been made. The younger Davis was on his father's staff at Texas Southern.

Former NBA player Rod Strickland, most recently an assistant at South Florida, is expected to be the third member of Davis' staff when the announcement is made later this month.

Detroit Mercy was 8-24 last season, after going 8-23 the year before. Alexander, 41, was fired in March after just those two seasons, and the two parties continue to negotiate his buyout.

This and that

■ A couple coaching notes at Central Michigan: Jim Earle has been named head coach of the women's golf team, arriving from Division II Cal State-Monterey Bay. Also, Matthew DePauw has joined the volleyball program as an assistant coach after working as volunteer student coach at his alma mater, Clarke University in Iowa, where he also played. DePauw will work with setters and defenders and help out with recruiting.

DePauw, by the way, is worth a follow on Twitter (@m_depauw).

■ Dave Keilitz, who played baseball at Central Michigan from 1961-64 and coached the team for 14 years starting in 1971, entered the Michigan Baseball Hall of Fame on Saturday. The Lansing-based Hall of Fame celebrated its fourth class, with Keilitz and Kalamazoo native Derek Jeter going in. The Hall of Fame is so new, in fact, Ty Cobb went in last year.

■ Eastern Michigan announced its open-to-the-public luncheons with football coach Chris Creighton. They will be Aug. 29, Sept. 26, Oct. 10, Oct. 24, Oct. 31 and Nov. 7. They will be at Bigalora Wood Fired Cucina in Ann Arbor, cost $15 and that includes food and drink. To register, call (734) 487-1050.

■ Street & Smith's Sports Business Journal recently named Western Michigan athletic director Kathy Beauregard a member of its 2018 class of "Game Changers: Women in Sports Business." Beauregard is one of 35 women to be recognized this year, and will be honored at the "Game Changers" conference in New York on Sept. 12.

■ Western Michigan baseball added Derek Mitchell and Adam "Spud" Goodwin to its staff. Mitchell, who kicked for the football team after a lengthy minor-league baseball career, will work as a player development coordinator, and Goodwin is a volunteer assistant. Also, the baseball team will hold walk-on tryouts Sept. 11 from 4-5:30 p.m. at Robert J. Bobb Stadium at Hyames Field.

■ Michigan hockey has promoted longtime trainer Rick Bancroft to director of hockey operations, and Brian Brewster has arrived as the new trainer. Brewster arrives from Michigan Tech, where Mel Pearson coached before landing the Michigan job. Bancroft has been with the program for 28 years.