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May & Davis Earn Major Awards as FAU Hauls in All-C-USA Honors

Conference USA announced its major award winners and all-conference teams for the 2022-23 men’s basketball season on Tuesday. The Florida Atlantic University men’s basketball team was well-represented after an incredible campaign in which the Owls went 28-3, 18-2 in conference play and earned the regular season C-USA Championship.

FAU head coach Dusty May was selected as Conference USA Coach of the Year to lead the Owls. Johnell Davis was tabbed as Sixth Player of the Year and was chosen First Team All-C-USA. Joining Davis on the First Team was Alijah Martin, and Vladislav Goldin rounded out the Owl honors with a Third Team All-C-USA selection.

May has led the Owls to the greatest season in Florida Atlantic history, accomplishing a tremendous amount of feats that have never been done at FAU. The Owls captured the C-USA regular season title, marking the program’s first in Conference USA history and first championship since the A-SUN regular-season title in 2010-11. May led his Owls to the program’s first Top 25 ranking ever, ascending as high as No. 19 in the AP poll and No. 20 in the USA Today Coaches poll.

The 28 wins are the most in school history, breaking the old record of 21. The 18 C-USA wins are not only a school record but are also a Conference USA record. The Owls rattled off an incredible 20-game winning streak, which doubled the FAU record and is the third-longest in C-USA history. FAU also went a perfect 17-0 at home and has the third-longest home winning streak in the nation. May’s Owls are the No. 1 seed in the Conference USA Championship Tournament.

“To win Coach of the Year, you have to have a great team and a connected group that works hard and makes sacrifices for each other and the program,” May said. “As far as the Coach of the Year award, it’s a tribute to the assistants, support staff, strength coaches – everyone who contributes to the holistic development of our players on a daily basis. My name is on the award, but I’m one of many who tries to impact these guys every day.”

Johnell Davis has put forward an exceptional breakout year for Florida Atlantic. Davis is the Owls’ leading scorer with an average of 13.2 points per game, despite coming off the bench in 21 out of his 29 appearances. The Gary, Indiana product is also ranked second on the squad in rebounding with an average of 5.2 boards per game while leading the team in steals with 37.

Davis is shooting an efficient 49% from the field and 41.0% from 3-point range. His numbers even increase in Conference USA action, as he is averaging 15.8 points per game with six rebounds per game in C-USA play. A consistent producer, Davis has recorded double figures in 19 games.

These are the first career conference honors for Davis and the first major award winner for FAU since Xavian Stapleton was Co-Sixth Man of the Year in 2018-19. It is only the fourth major conference award winner in FAU history.

“Much like three of his teammates, Nelly was very deserving of this award,” May said. “He sacrificed his starting spot and everything that comes with that for the good of the team. I’m very proud of his energy, and the production that he brought when he came into the game made an immediate impact every night.”

Alijah Martin earns his second consecutive all-conference honor after another terrific season for the Owls. He is averaging 12.6 points per game, which is second on the team along with 5.3 boards per game to rank third on the Owls. A dynamic scoring threat, Martin has led the Owls in points in nine games this year, which is the most on the team, and he has scored 10 points or more in 18 games this season.

Martin had an incredible six-game stretch in February, hitting double digits in every game while averaging 17.1 points per game during that span. He came up huge in the overtime win over Louisiana Tech on Feb. 11, scoring a season-high 26 points on a red-hot 7-of-10 shooting and 6-of-8 from 3-point range.

“After last season, our goal and expectation for Alijah was to improve enough to become a First Team player, and he did just that,” May said. “He battled some injuries early season and didn’t get off to a great start, so this award is first and foremost about the respect that he’s garnered by the way he plays the game. Moving from Third Team to First Team is a tribute to Alijah’s work ethic and improvement in all facets of the game.”

Vladislav Goldin has enjoyed a breakout season as the Owls’ starting center. He is averaging 10.9 points per game and a team-leading 6.5 rebounds per game. Goldin has been a major presence in the paint with a team-leading 34 blocks, which ranks seventh in C-USA.

Goldin is the only Owl to start and play in each of FAU’s 31 games this season. Goldin has recorded eight or more rebounds in eight games. The Nalchick, Russia native’s numbers even increase in Conference USA games, as Goldin is averaging 11.1 points and 7.1 rebounds in C-USA action. His 7.1 boards per game in C-USA action is good for fifth in the conference. Goldin also is shooting an incredibly efficient 64.5% from the field to lead the team.

“Vlad would have to be the most improved player in the league from last year to this year,” May said. “He’s improved defensively, he’s changed his body, he’s improved offensively – it’s night and day compared to last year. He impacts the game and our team on so many levels, and he’s very deserving of this all-conference award.”

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