Archive for the ‘D-2’ Category

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Kylan Mann is a transfer from the University of Hawaii-Hilo(D-2) where he was a red-shirt 2017-18.

He graduated from St. Paul High School in Los Angeles in 2017…His team advanced to the Southern Section CIF championship game…Scored 19 points in the title game…Two-time Santa Fe League champs…First Team all-league…Also First Team All-CIF-SS Division 3A pick…Averaged 19 points a game.

Kylan is a strong 2/3 guard/wing who is known for his deadly three point shooting.  He is the player that the other team calls out “Shooter”  when he touches the ball.

Mann is a qualifier with excellent grades and currently is pursuing a major in Kinesiology.

Kylan gives AVC a tough match up with his strength, size along with this long range shooting ability.



JL0_7190It was a homecoming of sorts when NorCal freshman point guard Surako Follings, 6’0″, 170, arrived at Antelope Valley College.  The Fremont High School freshman met with NoCal players Osinachi “Osi”Nwackukwau, 6’4″, 205 from San Leandro HS and  Miles Wise, 6’3″, 185, from Liberty HS, currently sophomores at AVC.   Also, he has been following AVC graduate and now D-1 Bowling Green State University graduate, Ismail Ali, point guard who is currently is working to sign a professional contract.  Ish was also is a graduate of San Leandro HS.

Surako was a athletic star at Fremont High School playing both quarterback for football(early high school years) and point guard for the basketball team.  Follings brings the toughness and leadership from the football side of athletics and looks to have great floor vision and shooting ability on the basketball court.

I spoke with Surako and he says he has decided to dedicate his athletics to the basketball court now that he has reached the college level.  He had several D-2 basketball scholarship offers, is an academic qualifier and averaged 18 points per game and five+ assists in his senior year in High School.  He believes that he has a good shot of being offered a D-1 scholarship down the road now that he has joined the Antelope Valley College’s program and is dedicating himself to that goal.

The following highlight video gives you a view of Surako Follings’ skill set.  Welcome to AVC basketball.


CBU Announces D1, WAC Move

Sammi Wellman, Director of Sports Information

RIVERSIDE, Calif. — California Baptist University has accepted an invitation to join the Western Athletic Conference, paving the way for a multi-year transition to NCAA Division I status, CBU and WAC officials announced today.
CBU and WAC officials held a joint news conference and released statements expressing enthusiasm about the move that was approved at the university’s regular Board of Trustees meeting.
"This represents a great step forward for California Baptist University and Lancer Athletics," said Dr. Ronald L. Ellis, CBU president. "We are honored to join the Western Athletic Conference and to advance CBU to NCAA Division I, the pinnacle of intercollegiate athletics. I am confident that moving to D-I as a member of the WAC will further elevate CBU’s reputation for excellence in athletics as well as academics."
Dr. Horace Mitchell, President of California State University, Bakersfield, and Chairman of the WAC’s Board of Directors congratulated CBU on becoming the newest member of the conference.
"On behalf of my fellow WAC Presidents and Chancellors, I am delighted to welcome California Baptist University as a Western Athletic Conference member institution effective July 1, 2018," Mitchell said.
Mitchell said Ellis made "a compelling case for membership in the WAC" last November at a meeting with the full WAC Board in Denver. The previous month, Mitchell visited CBU along with Utah Valley President Matthew Holland, Grand Canyon President Brian Mueller, and WAC Commissioner Jeff Hurd.
"We were impressed by the university’s academic programs, its commitment to transitioning its athletics program to NCAA Division I and its strong desire to join the WAC," Mitchell said.
Commissioner Hurd said several factors make California Baptist University a great fit for the WAC.
"Commitment to quality academics and athletics programs along with the extraordinary vision provided by President Ellis are at the top of the list. There is no doubt that CBU will make a smooth transition to Division I and to the WAC," Hurd said.
CBU currently is a member of the NCAA Division II Pacific West Conference and will remain eligible for all PacWest championships and NCAA D-II postseason play through the 2017-18 season. University officials plan to apply for NCAA D-I membership in June 2018.

"This is another step our University is taking to help us achieve a high level of excellence," added CBU Director of Athletics. "We are excited to go on this journey – remembering the success of the past but building towards an exciting future. It’s another opportunity to honor Christ through excellence in athletics."

I just found the early top 10 rankings for the national D-2 University  and like D-1 Early Ranking  it looks like D-2 college basketball in the West is also weak!

I know that its very early to rank basketball teams but, I have noticed at Antelope Valley College(and other Cal JUCO’s) that many of the top JUCO D-2 level players are being missed by west coast D-2 universities.

Instead they are getting full ride scholarships at D-2 power houses east of the Mississippi.   Not only are these Cal JUCO transfers making the east D-2 teams stronger(usually play year after year in national NCAA Tournament), but after they graduate they go on to play professional basketball!  Just using AVC as an example;

  1. Reggie Murphy, Henderson State University, European Pro
  2. Shelton Boykin, Angelo State University, South American Pro
  3. Vadal Faniel, Texas A and M International, European Pro

A bit of good news on the Horizon for the west coast D-2 teams? A increasingly large number of West D-2 teams(along with D-1 U’s) are recruiting often and aggressively at AVC this year.

Here is Sporting News top 10 D-2 ranking for 2016-17.

Sporting News

2016-17 Preseason Poll

1. West Liberty(West Virginia)

2. St. Thomas Aquinas(New York)

3. Alaska- Anchorage(Alaska)

4. Arkansas – Fort Smith(Arkansas)

5. Angelo State(Texas)

6. Queens University(North Carolina)

7. Colorado School of the Mines(Colorado)

8. Saginaw Valley State(Michigan)

9. West Texas A&M(Texas)

10. St. Cloud Stat(Minnesota)


Nevell Lenard is unexpectedly back and brings solid university talent and experience to AVC.    After playing playing his freshman year at AVC, Nevell signed with CS Dominguez Hills University with three years  of eligibility remaining.  Lenard needed to complete one summer class  to be ready to play,  but unfortunately it did not happen.  Nevell rejoined AVC for his sophomore year.

Lenard played an average of 14 minutes per game last year and due to injuries/losses of AVC’s complete Big squad, Nevell was pulled into playing the power forward and center position position.  Even out of position, Lenard scored 6.8 ppg(shooting 53%) and pulling down 4.0 rebounds per game.829_7827

Nevell Lenard 6’5” 210 forward graduated from Animo Pat Brown High School in LA in 2010.  Due to an ankle injury, he sat out the 2011-12 season. 

About Nevell’s basketball.  The man is strong and his weight room time shows.  He has great jumping ability and is willing to play anywhere he can help the team.   He is very strong around the baskets and a solid mid-range shooter.

Lenard is taking classes leading toward degrees in Kinesiology and/or Business.  He will have to find his role on a completely different basketball team this year filled with talent and size.  In addition, he will have to show university coaches that he serious about his academics this year. 

Welcome back Nevell.


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Vadal Faniel, 6’7”, 209 forward, signed a professional contract with the Cazorla Spanish team.  Vadal graduated from AVC 2013, received a full-ride scholarship to Texas A&M International, D-2 and now is playing professional basketball in Europe.


Bildergebnis für photos cazorla spain

2016 has been one of the most active years in the past ten where three AVC/University graduates have joined the rapidly growing professional ranks.  Congratulations Faniel, your Dad is looking down on you and cheering with his big happy voice.

Lucc Graduates1Quartz Hill HS/Antelope Valley College and now Drury University graduate Lucciano Gamiz just returned from Mexico City.  He was completing his mandatory semester of international studies in the Drury’s exceptional business program. 

Lucciano was the first AVC graduate who chose a full ride scholarship at a D-2 over a D-1 scholarship offer because of the quality of the academic program he was craving. 

After an outstanding two years of basketball and academics at Drury, the employers are standing in line to pick up Gamiz’s skill sets.  Advanced degree? Business position or even a bit of time off?  Congratulations to Luciano, his family, his coaching and academic teams on his accomplishments so far…and they have just begun.