Birthdate: March 19, 1975
Birthplace: Columbus, Ohio
High School: St. Francis DeSales High School (1993)
College: Bowling Green State University (1993-1997)
Year Inducted: 2020
A Columbus prep superstar who went on to become an all-time great player at Bowling Green as well as a top-five NBA draft pick, Antonio Daniels clearly was one of Ohio’s great hoopsters of the 1990s.
Highly athletic and durable at 6-4 and 195 pounds, Daniels was the Mid-American Conference Player of the Year as a senior at BGSU and had professional basketball scouts drooling at the thought of what he could do at the next level. In the summer of 1997, he was selected fourth overall by the Vancouver Grizzlies – one of seven teams he played for during a productive 14-year career.
Daniels began to make his name at DeSales High School, where he wowed onlookers with his oncourt derring-do. Still, he felt he had to continue to prove himself at Bowling Green, and his hunger to exceed drove him to immediate success. He was named MAC Freshman of the Year following the 1993-94 campaign. As a junior, he led the MAC in assists and was named second-team all-conference. In the 1996-97 season, he put up 24.0 points and 6.8 assists per game while leading the Falcons to a regular-season championship.
Daniels amassed 1,789 career points at BG, ranking him second in program history at the time and 10th among all MAC performers. His 767 points as a senior are the second-most by a Falcon in a single season. He added 216 assists and 73 steals in ’96-97, which rank third and second, respectively, in the school record books. His career mark of 563 assists is second all-time at the school.
Appropriately, Daniels was elected to the BGSU Athletic Hall of Fame in 2007. His NBA career lasted until 2011 and was highlighted by him helping the San Antonio Spurs win the 1999 title as a reserve guard. The following season, Daniels set a career high by shooting 47.4 percent from the field. From 2000-02, he played in 161 of 164 games for the Spurs and averaged better than 9.0 points per contest as a valuable part of coach Gregg Popovich’s rotation.
In 2007-08 with the Washington Wizards, he reached several career bests including averages of 30.4 minutes and 4.8 assists per game.