Fullerton College's 2019 State Championship basketball team excels far beyond the court with eight members of the team transferring to four-year universities with an associate degree in one hand and a scholarship in the other.
State champions Ezekiel Alley, Dylan Banks, Lance Coleman II, Rodrick Mccobb, Jailen Moore, and Ronne Readus crossed the stage at Commencement on May 25, becoming one of largest groups of student-athletes on the same team to achieve a state championship, associate degrees, and full scholarships to universities all in the same year. Student-athletes Carter Armstrong and Vaj Rice also earned this achievement but chose not to participate in commencement activities.
"I don't think there was another community college program throughout the state that has eight men moving forward with scholarships," said Basketball Coach Perry Webster. "I'm so proud of all our student-athletes. In addition to the passion and heart they play with on the court, that drive was also present in the classroom. I know each of them will have great success as they move on to the next level."
The basketball stars took home the California Community College Athletic Association's State Championship, the fourth in Fullerton College history and the first since 2006, after a victory win against City College of San Francisco in March. Coleman II was also named Orange Empire Conference and the state's Most Valuable Player.
Fullerton College has long been known as one of the top community colleges in the state with high transfer rates to the California State University and UC systems, as well as private colleges. Approximately 145 student-athletes join more than 1,000 Fullerton College students who transfer to public or private four-year universities annually. Fullerton College was named No. 1 in transfers to the CSU system for the 2016-2017 academic year.
About the students:
Ezekiel "Zeke" Alley transferred to Fullerton College in 2018 from Arizona Western College. Before sustaining an injury in mid-January, Alley was leading the state in assists with 83 (5.8 per game). He scored 199 points, with 23 steals, and had 55 rebounds. A true floor general with vision and speed, Northwest Nazarene signed Alley in early May. He graduated from Fullerton College with an Associate in Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies: Social Behavior and Self Development.
Carter Armstrong graduated from Fullerton College with an Associate in Arts in Business Administration. With a 3.5 GPA, Armstrong was awarded an academic scholarship up to $40,000 to attend Chapman University. Originally from Canada, Armstrong graduated from St. Anthony's High School in Long Beach. He plans to pursue a bachelor's degree in finance and a master's in business administration.
Dylan Banks graduates from Fullerton College with an Associate in Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies. Banks came off an injury-plagued season to step in for Zeke Alley and made huge plays down the stretch of the season to help win the Hornets a victory. Battling through much adversity in the last two years, Banks was recognized for his perseverance and earned a scholarship to Simpson University.
Lance Coleman II will be attending California State University, Northridge. He led the Orange Empire Conference averaging 19.4 points a game along with 7.6 rebounds. He finished fifth overall in the state with 640 points and is fifteenth on the Hornet single-season scoring list. He earned an Associate in Arts in Speech and is the 2019 Most Valuable Player in California.
Rodrick McCobb received a full scholarship to play at Northern Colorado University after earning an Associate in Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies. The unanimously voted team captain and first-team All-Orange Empire Conference, and All-State signed in November. He averaged 9.8 points a game along with 4.5 rebounds, 2 assists, and 1.4 steals while guarding the other team's best players every game.
Jailen Moore is a first-team All-Orange Empire Conference student-athlete. He led the Hornets in three-point shooting this past season averaging 3.1/7.1 over 33 games played. He was third in the conference hitting 43.3 percent of this three-pointers. Overall, Moore scored 376 points, had 36 assists, 23 steals, and was 83.7 percent from the free throw line. Moore graduated from Fullerton College with an Associate in Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies and will be transferring to St. Cloud State.
Ronne Readus is transferring with a full scholarship to play at California State University, Bakersfield. He graduated from Fullerton College with an Associated in Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies. Readus signed with CSUB in November 2018. A two-time All-Orange Empire conference and 2018-2019 OEC Defensive Player of the Year, Readus was also a first-team All-State selection averaging 12.4 points a game, and 11.2 rebounds while shooting 57 percent from the field.
Vaj Rice will attend Bellevue University after earning an Associate in Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies. Rice signed with Bellevue in May after a great season of 5.7 points per game, 3.5 rebounds, and 52 percent from the field. He completes two years with the Hornets and is a graduate of Valley Christian High School in Signal Hill, CA.
Story by Melissa Serrato, FC Campus Communications Assistant