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Mike Davis (basketball coach)

Michael Davis (born September 15, 1960) is an American basketball coach. He is the head men's basketball coach at the University of Detroit Mercy, a position he has held since 2018.[1] Davis served as the head men's basketball coach at Indiana University Bloomington from 2000 to 2006, the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) from 2006 to 2012, and Texas Southern University from 2012 to 2018.[2][3]

Mike Davis
Mike Davis CIMG0903 crop.JPG
Current position
TitleHead coach
TeamDetroit Mercy
Biographical details
Born (1960-09-15) September 15, 1960 (age 59)
Fayette, Alabama
Playing career
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1989–1990Miles (assistant)
1990–1994Wichita Falls Texans (assistant)
1994–1995Chicago Rockers (assistant)
1995–1997Alabama (assistant)
1997–2000Indiana (assistant)
2012–2018Texas Southern
2018–presentDetroit Mercy
Head coaching record
Tournaments7–8 (NCAA Division I)
3–7 (NIT)
Accomplishments and honors
NCAA Division I Regional—Final Four (2002)
Big Ten regular season (2002)
C-USA regular season (2011)
4 SWAC regular season (2013, 2015–2017)
4 SWAC Tournament (2014, 2015, 2017, 2018)
C-USA Coach of the Year (2011)
SWAC Coach of the Year (2013, 2015, 2016)

Playing careerEdit

Davis, an Alabama native, spent his collegiate playing career with the University of Alabama Crimson Tide after earning the state's Mr. Basketball honor in 1979. In his first season, he played for the legendary C. M. Newton and then spent his final three years playing under another coaching legend, Wimp Sanderson. He ended his career with a 10.1 points per game average. His 165 steals ranks third all-time at the school. Davis won the team's Hustle Award all four seasons and was named to the Southeastern Conference's All-Defensive team his senior year.

Following his playing career at Alabama, Davis was a second-round selection of the Milwaukee Bucks of the National Basketball Association in the 1983 draft, but never played in the league. He would spend the next two seasons playing in Switzerland, where he and teammate Ron Burns were named to the league's all-star team, and in Italy. He played the 1988-89 season with the Topeka Sizzlers of the Continental Basketball Association (CBA).

Coaching careerEdit

Davis began his coaching career as an assistant at Miles College in Fairfield, Alabama. After one season at Miles College, Davis relocated to Venezuela, directing both professional teams and the country's national team.[4]

In 1990, Davis returned to the United States and took a position with the Wichita Falls Texans of the Continental Basketball Association (CBA). In 1994, the Wichita Falls franchise relocated to Chicago, Illinois. Davis moved with the team not only as an assistant coach, but also as a player. Despite not having played for five consecutive years, the then 35-year-old Davis averaged 8.3 points, 3.3 rebounds and 2.6 assists per contest for the Rockers.[4]


Davis returned to his alma mater, Alabama and served as an assistant coach from (1995–1997) under head coach, David Hobbs.[4]


Assistant coachEdit

In 1997, Davis joined the coaching staff of legendary coach Bob Knight at Indiana University. In his three seasons as an IU assistant, the Hoosiers compiled a 63-32 overall record and advanced to the NCAA Tournament three times.

Head coachEdit

Indiana University president Myles Brand dismissed Bob Knight in September 2000, finding him in violation of a "zero tolerance" policy Brand had previously instituted. Students and alumni protested the Knight firing, and several players threatened to transfer unless assistants John Treloar and Mike Davis were promoted to replace Knight. Brand offered the assistants jobs as 'co coaches' but Treloar declined, deferring to Davis. As such, Davis was named as interim coach on September 12, 2000. Treloar accepted the title of 'Associate Head Coach.'

In his first season, Davis led a team featuring NBA Draft picks Kirk Haston and Jared Jeffries to a 21–13 record. On March 21, 2001, Davis was formally named as Indiana's 22nd full-time head coach and the Hoosiers first African–American head coach. In 2002, the Davis-led Hoosiers followed a 19–11 regular season with a surprise run to the NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament title game. One month later, Indiana rewarded Davis with a contract extension through the 2007–08 season.

Coach Davis was unable to maintain similar success in the following years. In a game on December 21, 2002, 6th ranked Indiana took on 16th ranked Kentucky. Prior to the game Davis stated publicly that he "hated Kentucky with a passion" and wanted to win the game "in the worst way." During the game Davis, enraged by a foul not being called, ran onto the court with 2.6 seconds remaining. Davis was subsequently ejected. Indiana trailed only 65-64 when Davis exploded, but Kentucky's Keith Bogans made five of the six ensuing free throws to put the game out of reach and Kentucky went on to win the game 70-64.[5] In a press conference following the game, Mike Davis said, "There's no way I should've acted like that. I can't explain it. I've done something to embarrass my team. ... I cost us the game. I was so emotional. I need to learn and grow from this."[5]

The following season, in 2003-04, Indiana's 14–15 record was the school's first losing season in over 35 years. In 2004 'Associate Head Coach' John Treloar left Indiana for a position as an assistant coach at LSU. The following season, Indiana went 15–14, including a first round home loss in the NIT. In the spring of 2005, Rick Greenspan warned,

While we share this common goal and are both confident that it will be reached, we also know that our record the last two years is not up to the standards to which Indiana is accustomed and to which we aspire. This is why we have set ambitious and achievable goals for next season of competing at a very high level in the Big Ten Conference and successfully competing in the NCAA tournament.[6]

Indiana again failed to meet expectations during the 2005–06 season. By late January 2006, the Hoosiers were at risk of missing the tournament for the third straight year and the calls for Davis' job grew louder. On February 11, 2006, Davis missed a home game against Iowa. Four days later, he resigned effective at the end of the 2006 season. Davis said that he decided to make the announcement before the end of the season to end the distraction that his position's uncertainty had created around the team. The Hoosiers performed better after this announcement and reached the second-round of the NCAA Tournament. Indiana lost 90–80 to Gonzaga in the NCAA Tournament on March 18, 2006, ending Mike Davis' tenure as Indiana's head coach.

In 2018 Davis admitted that he was not ready to be a head coach at such a large school when he took over for Knight. Speaking on the Big Ten Network’s 'A Taste of Coaching,' Davis said, 'I wasn't prepared, I knew I wasn't prepared, but I tried to walk out like I was prepared."[7] Davis also said in 2018 that he was now '100 times better' as a coach than he was at Indiana due to his increased coaching experience.[8]


On April 7, 2006, Mike Davis was hired as the new head coach of the UAB Blazers.[4] Davis replaced Mike Anderson, who left UAB after a successful stint to become the head coach at Missouri. The Blazers finished 15–16 in Davis' first season at the helm, earning a 9th seed in the Conference USA tournament and losing to 8th seed Marshall 53–52 in the first round. UAB subsequently failed to qualify for the NCAA men's basketball tournament, ending the Blazers' three-year streak of appearances in the NCAA post-season and causing some to question whether Davis was the right man for the job.[9]

Despite several injuries and academic casualties in Davis's second year at UAB, Davis led the Blazers to a 22–9 regular season record and a 2nd-place finish in Conference USA. The Blazers narrowly missed making the NCAA men's basketball tournament and instead were rewarded with an appearance in the NIT.

On April 24, 2007, the University Board of Trustees rewarded Coach Davis with a 2-year contract extension. The extended contract ran through and the 2012–13 season featured a base salary that was increased to $625,000 from $600,000 annually. He was also eligible for increased incentives, including $35,000 for taking UAB to the NCAA Tournament, $75,000 each for a Sweet 16 appearance and a Final Four appearance and $100,000 for appearing in the national championship game. The buyout clause in the contract was increased from $500,000 to $625,000. This contract is fully guaranteed. On March 16, 2012, after a 15–16 record (9–7 in Conference USA) Davis was fired as the head basketball coach at UAB due to "poor ticket sales and attendance" as well as waning fan support and a history of disappointing performances in postseason action. ".[2]

Texas SouthernEdit

On August 2, 2012, Davis was named interim head coach of Texas Southern University after the abrupt resignation of Tony Harvey.[10] On October 26, 2012, Davis signed a four-year contract to become the full-time coach at Texas Southern.[11] He was named 2014–2015 SWAC coach of the year.[12]

Head coaching recordEdit

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Indiana Hoosiers (Big Ten Conference) (2000–2006)
2000–01 Indiana 21–13 10–6 4th NCAA First Round
2001–02 Indiana 25–12 11–5 T–1st NCAA Runner-up
2002–03 Indiana 21–13 8–8 6th NCAA Second Round
2003–04 Indiana 14–15 7–9 T–9th
2004–05 Indiana 15–14 10–6 T–4th NIT First Round
2005–06 Indiana 19–12 9–7 T–4th NCAA Second Round
Indiana: 115–79 (.593) 55–41 (.573)
UAB Blazers (Conference USA) (2006–2012)
2006–07 UAB 15–16 7–9 T–8th
2007–08 UAB 23–11 12–4 2nd NIT Second round
2008–09 UAB 22–11 11–5 3rd NIT First round
2009–10 UAB 25–9 11–5 T–3rd NIT Quarterfinal
2010–11 UAB 22–9 12–4 1st NCAA First Four
2011–12 UAB 15–16 9–7 T–5th
UAB: 122–72 (.629) 62–34 (.646)
Texas Southern Tigers (Southwestern Athletic Conference) (2012–2018)
2012–13 Texas Southern 17–14 16–2 1st
2013–14 Texas Southern 19–15 12–6 T–2nd NCAA First Four
2014–15 Texas Southern 22–13 16–2 1st NCAA Round of 64
2015–16 Texas Southern 18–15 16–2 1st NIT First Round
2016–17 Texas Southern 23–12 16–2 1st NCAA First Round
2017–18 Texas Southern 16–20 12–6 T–2nd NCAA First Round
Texas Southern: 115–89 (.564) 88–20 (.815)
Detroit Titans (Horizon League) (2018–present)
2018–19 Detroit 11–20 8–10 T–6th
2019-20 Detroit 1-4
Detroit: 12–24 (.333) 8–10 (.444)
Total: 364–265 (.579)

      National champion         Postseason invitational champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion


Davis is married to Tamilya Davis (née Floyd). The couple has a son, Antoine, who plays for his father at Detroit Mercy. Davis is also the father of Mike Davis Jr., who was a member of the UAB men's basketball team, and of a daughter, Lateesha. His cousin is Ronnie McCollum, the 2001 NCAA Division I men's basketball scoring champion and expatriate professional basketball player.

Davis is also a devout Christian.[13]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Crawford, Dakota. "Ex IU basketball coach Mike Davis hired at Detroit Mercy from TSU" (June 6, 2018). IndyStar. Archived from the original on June 6, 2018. Retrieved June 6, 2018.
  2. ^ a b UAB Blazers fire men's basketball coach Mike Davis - ESPN
  3. ^ " - Davis out at Indiana - Feb 15, 2006". CNN. February 15, 2006. Retrieved May 12, 2010.
  4. ^ a b c d Mike Davis Named UAB Men's Basketball Coach - CONFERENCEUSA.COM - The Official Athletic site of The Conference USA
  5. ^ a b "Davis ejected after protesting non-call as Wildcats win". December 21, 2002. Retrieved March 22, 2012.
  6. ^ "Indiana to Keep Davis As Coach, After All". The Washington Post. March 23, 2005. Retrieved May 12, 2010.
  7. ^ Big Ten Network (February 7, 2017), A Taste of Coaching: Taking Over for Bobby Knight, retrieved April 16, 2019
  8. ^ "Former IU coach Mike Davis: '100 times better than I was at Indiana'". Indianapolis Star. Retrieved April 16, 2019.
  9. ^ Archived September 30, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ "Texas Southern hires Mike Davis as interim coach". 2012. Retrieved August 5, 2012.
  11. ^ "Former Indiana coach, Mike Davis signs four-year deal with Texas Southern". 2012. Retrieved March 5, 2013.
  12. ^ "Gibbs named SWAC Player of the Year, Davis selected as Coach of the Year". 2015. Retrieved March 9, 2015.
  13. ^ DeCourcy, Mike (January 21, 2002). "Davis and Goliath". Sporting News.