NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVA/Ole Miss Athletics) – Ole Miss guards Deandre Burnett and Terence Davis were tabbed second team Preseason All-SEC selections by a select panel of both SEC and national media members, the league office announced at the annual SEC Basketball Media Days. The Rebels are one of only three SEC teams to have multiple players on the lists, joining Kentucky and Texas A&M.
Both Rebels earned Preseason All-SEC distinction for the first time in their careers. Averaging a combined 31.4 points per game last season, Burnett and Davis return as the highest scoring duo in the SEC and the 13th-highest scoring tandem in the country.
After sitting out a year due to transferring from Miami (Fla.), Burnett made an immediate impact on the Rebels during the 2016-17 campaign. The guard averaged a team-high 16.5 points per game and finished fifth in the SEC in both free-throw percentage (88.1) and three-point percentage (37.6). Finishing eighth in the league in scoring, Burnett reached double figures in 26 of 33 games, including 10 20-plus performances and a career-high 41-point output (Nov. 18 vs. Oral Roberts). He also shared the rock, providing 104 assists throughout the season (3.2 apg).
Davis burst onto the scene as a sophomore last year, averaging 14.9 points per game after only providing 1.8 points per game as a freshman. It was the largest increase in scoring among any returning player in the conference. Shooting 48.2 percent from the field, the Southaven, Mississippi, native ranked fourth in the league in field goal percentage and recorded 20+ points in six different games. He quickly became a playmaker on both sides of the floor, leading the Rebels with 50 steals as well. Like his running mate Burnett, Davis produced double figures in scoring in 26 games. Twice he eclipsed the 30-point plateau, scoring a career-high 33 versus LSU as well as 30 in a win over Syracuse in the NIT.
Voting for SEC Men’s Basketball Player of the Year resulted in a three-way tie with Georgia senior forward Yante Maten, Missouri freshman forward Michael Porter, Jr. and Texas A&M sophomore forward Robert Williams finishing as the media favorites.
The Rebels were also picked 10th in the preseason media poll despite returning four starters and being one of only two teams to finish .500 or better in SEC play in each of the last six seasons. Ole Miss has not finished worse than sixth in the league since the conference went away from the divisional format (2011-12 season).
Points were compiled on a 14-13-12-11-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 basis. Each media member also voted for a five-player All-SEC Team. Ties were not broken.
Burnett, Davis and head coach Kennedy are spending the morning in Nashville for SEC Media Day. For behind-the-scenes access of the Rebels at #SECTipoff, follow the Rebels on Twitter at @OleMissMBB, on Facebook at Ole Miss Men's Basketball and on Instagram at olemissmbb.
First Team All-SEC
KeVaughn Allen – Florida, G
Yante Maten – Georgia, F
Hamidou Diallo – Kentucky, G
Michael Porter, Jr. – Missouri, F
Robert Williams – Texas A&M, F
Second Team All-SEC
Collin Sexton – Alabama, G
Kevin Knox – Kentucky, F
Terence Davis – Ole Miss, G
Deandre Burnett – Ole Miss, G
Quinndary Weatherspoon – Mississippi St., G
Tyler Davis – Texas A&M, C
Matthew Fisher-Davis – Vanderbilt, G/F
SEC Player of the Year (tie)
Yante Maten – Georgia
Michael Porter, Jr. – Missouri
Robert Williams – Texas A&M
Preseason Media Poll
- Texas A&M
- Ole Miss
- South Carolina
- Mississippi State