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NKU Men's Basketball Ranked #2 in Horizon League Pre-Season Poll

Coming off a season that saw Northern Kentucky win the Horizon League's regular season and conference tournament crowns, the Norse are picked to finish second this season.

The preseason poll was released Tuesday showing the results of votes cast by league coaches, athletic communication personnel, and media.

Wright State is the preseason favorite in the Horizon with 28 first-place votes and 350 points, to NKU's 5 first-place votes and 295 points.

NKU's Jalen Tate was selected preseason first-team while Tyler Sharpe was selected among the preseason second-team.

The full preseason conference ranking can be seen below.

The Norse have consistently outpaced preseason predictions, winning the conference tournament in 2017 after being selected to finish seventh overall. NKU was picked second in each of the previous two years, finishing first in 2018 and 2019 instead, though the team tied with Wright State last season.

In the past three years, Northern Kentucky has appeared in the NCAA Tournament twice (2017, 2019) after winning the conference tournament, and in the NIT (2018) after losing in the conference tournament but winning the regular season title.

Darrin Horn takes over as head coach this season, replacing John Brannen who compiled a record of 81-51 over four seasons at NKU. Brannen is now head coach at Cincinnati.

Northern Kentucky opens the 2019-20 slate against UC Clermont on November 5 at BB&T Arena. Prior to that, fans will get their first glimpse of the Norse in competitive action when they host Transylvania on Oct. 30.

2019-20 Horizon League Preseason Poll Results

Pl.           School (1st-place) – Votes

1.            Wright State (28) – 350

2.            Northern Kentucky (5) – 295

3.            UIC (1) – 280

4.            Oakland (1) – 229

5.            Green Bay – 207

6.            Youngstown State – 186

7.            Milwaukee – 146

8.            Detroit Mercy – 133

9.            IUPUI – 92

10.          Cleveland State (1) – 62

Preseason Player of the Year

Antoine Davis, Detroit Mercy

First Team (alphabetical order by school)

Antoine Davis, Detroit Mercy

Jalen Tate, Northern Kentucky

Xavier Hill-Mais, Oakland

Tarkus Ferguson, UIC

Loudon Love, Wright State

Second Team (alphabetical order by school)

JayQuan McCloud, Green Bay

Tyler Sharpe, Northern Kentucky

Marcus Ottey, UIC

Bill Wampler, Wright State

Darius Quisenberry, Youngstown State

-Staff report