CoBL Staff (@hooplove215)
(Ed. Note: This article is part of our 2021-22 season coverage, which will run for the six weeks preceding the first official games of the year on Nov. 9. To access all of our high school and college preview content for this season, click here.)
Philadelphia basketball is everywhere.
More than 100 student-athletes who are from the Philadelphia area are playing Division I hoops this year, spread throughout many of the country’s 30-plus conferences and 350-plus D-I programs. There are players in their seventh year of college, those primed for a breakout year, those who’ve already become legends at the schools they attend, and everything in between.
We’ve split the area’s D-I alumni into a five-part list, including four segments of returning players and one of the true freshmen who are going off into their first year of D-I hoops. Here’s Part 3 of our 2021-22 CoBL alumni roundup, featuring 20 players who aren’t in their first year of collegiate basketball:
(If we’re missing someone, let us know: firstname.lastname@example.org)
Christian Ings (above, at Neumann-Goretti in 2018) transferred from Rider to Norfolk State this offseason. (Photo: Josh Verlin/CoBL)
Christian Ings (Jr./Norfolk State)
He goes by the nickname “Zero,” as No. 0 will be playing for Norfolk State this year after two seasons at Rider. Last season for Rider, Ings started in 20 out of 22 games while averaging 25.2 minutes of action. He put up 7.7 pts, 3.5 reb and 2.4 ast. The third year guard will make an immediate impact, adding some depth in the backcourt for Norfolk State. Last season Norfolk State had an impressive 17-8 record, winning their play-in-game against Appalachian State, but fell to top seed Gonzaga in the first round of the NCAA tournament.
Konrad Kiszka (Jr./Princeton)
Heading into his second season of eligibility, after the Ivy League was cancelled last year, Kiszka will fight to get more playing time after the one year hiatus. Kiszka appeared in 13 games for the Tigers in his freshman campaign, tallying 19 pts, 7 reb and 3 ast in 51 mins of action. The 6-7 guard out of La Salle College High School has not quite put up the numbers he did in high school, but is still battling to earn his way into the rotation. With almost a 20-man roster, Kiszka is really going to have to earn his stripes in his second season with the Tigers.
Matiss Kulackovskis (Sr./Bowling Green)
Out of Latvia, the Archbishop Ryan product is heading into his third year of eligibility with the Falcons. Kulackovskis missed all of last year with a leg injury. The 6-9 forward was battling his way to get back on the court but unfortunately hit a setback in his rehab during the season. Expected to be fully recovered from his leg injury, Kulackovskis will have to earn his way back into the lineup for the Falcons. In his sophomore season he came off the bench in all 30 games he appeared in; averaging 3.7 pts,1.8 reb and held a 47.6 fg% in about 10.6 mpg. As part of the frontcourt rotation off the bench, Kulackovskis will have to earn his way back into an every-game role.
Zach Lezanic (Soph./Army)
Lezanic found his way to West Point after playing high school ball at the Hill School and Conestoga. The 6-0 guard was a two-time First Team All-Main Line (2018, 2019) in high school and First Team All-MAPL (2020). Lezanic was also a 1,000 point-scorer, despite tearing his quad tendon his freshman year. He only saw one minute of court time the entire season during his freshman year at Army, but has the skill at the guard position to earn more playing time as his collegiate career progresses.
Dom London (Jr./Maryland Eastern Shore)
London will be making his debut for Maryland Eastern Shore this season. Already his third team in his collegiate career, the 6-1 guard has a lot of talent and experience to bring to his new team. London played his first two years at Harcum, solidifying himself as one of the best guards in program history. At Harcum, London played for head coach Drew Kelly, where he scored over 1,000 points in just two seasons. London transferred to Florida Gulf Coast last year where he played for just one season. At FGU, London played in 16 games where he totaled 225 minutes and 98 points.
Seth Lundy (Jr./Penn State)
The 6-6 forward started in 15 out of 25 games for the Nittany Lions last season. Lundy’s numbers increased big time during his sophomore season averaging 10.1 pts, 4.2 reb and 23.8 mpg. Lundy scored a career-high 32 pts, on 11-of-19 and shot 50% from beyond the arc against VCU (Dec. 2). This was one of two games last season where Lundy exceeded 30 points in a game. The Roman Catholic product should see his numbers increase even more heading into his third season with Penn State.
Xzavier Malone-Key (Sr./Oregon State)
Heading into his senior campaign, Malone-Key will be joining his third different team at Oregon State. After transferring out of Rider after his freshman year, the 6-4 guard has played the past three seasons at Fairleigh Dickinson, deciding to opt out of the 2020-21 season. Two seasons ago Malone-Key started in all 26 games he played in; averaging 12.3 pts, 3.3 reb and 2.0 ast in 29.2 mpg. After a year off, the Plymouth Whitemarsh grad will work hard to pick back up right where he left off in his last year of eligibility.
Matt McFarlane (Soph./La Salle)
Mostly an unknown prospect in his high school years at Samuel Fels, McFarlane took a couple years to get to Colby (Kan.) Community College and blossomed to 6-10, turning into a legitimate Division I prospect along the way. He originally landed at Wichita State this summer but only briefly, then decided to come home to Philadelphia. He'll redshirt this season unless the Explorers can get an NCAA waiver due to that pit stop.
Naheem McLeod (Jr./Florida State)
A towering 7-3 center out of Plymouth Whitemarsh, McLeod originally committed to Florida State as a member of the 2019 class, but needed to go the JUCO route to get qualified. He played at Chipola (Fl.) College for two seasons and now begins his time in Tallahassee with three years of eligibility remaining. Last year, he averaged 5.8 ppg and 4.0 rpg for Chipola.
Jaelen McGlone (Soph./Rider)
The Cheltenham product established himself as one of the top guards coming out of high school. McGlone was named to the First Team All-State and First Team All-Area during his senior year of high school. Leading his team to a Suburban One Championship, McGlone was also named the MVP of the Jameer Nelson Classic. After high school ball, McGlone went off to Rider where last year he started in 3/15 games for the Broncs. He tallied 119 minutes and scored 41 points in his freshman season.
Will McNair (R-Soph./New Mexico State)
The 6-10 forward out of MLK High School is heading into his third season with the Aggies. McNair redshirted his freshman year with the Aggies, and has been a reserve for them through his first two seasons of suiting up. Last season, McNair took part in all 20 games and had the chance to start in a game (Dec. 28). The big man averaged 3.1 pts, 3.2 reb, 0.4 ast and 0.8 blk while recording 13.1 mpg.
Gediminas Mokseckas (Fr./Campbell)
From Lithuania, the 6-4 guard out of Archbishop Ryan is heading into his second season with Campbell. The guard helped lead Archbishop Ryan to the quarterfinals in the state playoffs, before the remainder of the tournament was cancelled, due to the pandemic. Mokseckas started in 11/23 games for Campbell, scoring a career high 14-points against St. Andrews (11/30/20). He averaged 4.8 pts, 20 reb and 1.0 ast while managing to shoot 54% from the field.
Lucas Monroe (Jr./Penn)
The junior guard is heading into his second season with the Quakers, after the Ivy League was shut down last year. Two seasons ago, Monroe was just one of three players on Penn’s roster to play in all 27 games. He had the chance to start in four games for the Quakers, averaging 3.4 pts, 3.2 reb and 0.9 ast in 14.9 mpg. The 6-6 guard tallied seven points and seven rebounds in his collegiate debut against Alabama (Nov. 5), which was Penn’s season-opener, the program’s first on the road at a SEC home court.
Clifton Moore (above) is in his second year on the court with La Salle after transferring in from Indiana. (Photo: Josh Verlin/CoBL)
Clifton Moore (R-Sr./La Salle)
After two years at Indiana, the red-shirt senior transferred over to La Salle last year. Two seasons ago the 6-10 big man sat out the entire year due to NCAA transfer rules. Last season, Moore started in 18 of 23 games in his first season with the Explorers. Moore immediately established himself as one of the top shot blockers in the Atlantic 10, ranking seventh with 1.5 blk a game. To go along with that Moore put up 6.1 pts and 4.0 reb in 19 minutes a game. The big man is one of the Explorers big keys to success this upcoming season.
Rahmir Moore (Jr./Saint Joseph’s)
Heading into his third year as a Hawk, the 6-3 guard appeared in all 20 games and started in seven games last season. Philly family ties are in Moore’s blood, as a brother-in-law to Philadelphia great and NBA Champion Kyle Lowry and brother to SJU women’s basketball great Ayahna Cornish and former Temple standout Ramone Moore. The winning mentality coming from Philly is in Moore’s blood. Moore averaged 4.1 pts, 2.4 reb and 1.6 ast in 21.1 mpg in his second season for the Hawks.
Mahki Morris (Sr./Abilene Christian)
Morris began his collegiate career playing for two years at Cochise Junior College. The 6-3 guard then transferred to Abilene Christian University where he has spent the past two seasons. In his junior year Morris scored a career high 15 points vs Champion Christian, but his season was eventually cut short due to a season-ending injury. Last season as a senior Morris started in seven of 29 games for ACU. Primarily coming off the bench, Morris averaged 6.6 pts, 1.9 reb and 1.2 ast in 18 mpg. ACU got its bid to the NCAA tournament last season, upsetting three-seeded Texas in the first round, 53-52; Morris scored five points in 18 minutes of action in the win.
Justyn Mutts (Gr./Virginia Tech)
Virginia Tech has become the third different home for Mutts in his collegiate career. The 6-7 forward started his career at High Point, where he started in 18 of 28 games as a freshman. After just one season Mutts made his way over to the University of Delaware where he started in 32 of 33 games for the Blue Hens, averaging 12.2 pts, 8.4 reb (5th in CAA) and 2.2 ast. Mutts then made his way to the Hokies where he started in 21 of 22 games last season. In 29.6 mpg he put up 9.5 pts, 6.4 reb and 2.2 ast.
Jameer Nelson Jr. (Jr./Delaware)
Son of St. Joe’s great Jameer Nelson, Nelson Jr. committed to George Washington after a standout high school career at the Haverford School. During his senior year at Haverford he led them to an undefeated season (30-0) season, averaging 15.0 ppg. The 6-1 guard played two seasons at GW, starting in 28 of 31 games his freshman year. In his sophomore campaign he averaged 8.4 pts, 2.0 reb and 26.3 mpg in just seven games played before transferring to play for the Blue Hens. Nelson Jr. transferred this past spring where he still has three years of eligibility left.
Paul Newman (Gr./Albany)
The 6-9 big man played all four years with the Bucknell Bison before transferring to Albany for his last year of eligibility. The Roman Catholic product averaged 17 pts and 10 reb during his career at Bucknell, bringing home the Patriot League title in freshman year (2017-2018). During his senior season Newman averaged 5.2 pts and 4.6 reb in just 12 games. A majority of the Bisons games were cancelled last season due to COVID-19. This season will provide one last opportunity for Newman where he can enjoy a full season for Albany.
Dean Noll (Sr./Cornell)
In his third year of eligibility, Noll is looking to pick back up where he left off two seasons ago. The 6-2 guard averaged 6.4 pts, 2.4 reb and 1.3 ast in 17.4 mpg for Cornell during his sophomore season. He started in just one game but played in all 27 games that season. Last season was cancelled for Big Red due to the pandemic shutting down the Ivy League.
Jacob O’Connell (Soph./Princeton)
As a freshman two seasons ago, the 6-11, 240-pound St. Joe’s Prep grad only played in 11 games, getting his feet wet at the Division I level. The big man averaged 2.9 minutes a game, but will aim to get a more increased role heading into his second season. O’Connell is yet another Ivy Leaguer who had to sit out last season due to the pandemic.
Anthony Ochefu (R-Sr./Delaware)
Another Ochefu out of Westtown, the 6-8 forward is heading into his second season with the Blue Hens. Ochefu started his career at Stony Brook, playing there for three seasons before transferring. Last season with the Blue Hens, Ochefu averaged 2.1 pts and 2.6 reb in 14 games played off the bench for Delaware. Ochefu will work hard to get a more increased role with the Blue Hens heading into what is to be his last year of collegiate basketball.