Let’s play a game. It starts with a description of a college basketball player and ends with with a guess on said player’s identity.
Ready? OK, let’s get started.
This point guard first began making a name for himself in college because of his outstanding play at a mid-major program. He puts up huge scoring and assist numbers on an Oakland team, despite his small physical stature. He excels at scoring and setting up teammates with precision passing.
Did you guess Steph Curry, All-Star guard for the Golden State Warriors and reigning NBA MVP? If you did, you’re wrong.
Bet you didn’t see that one coming.
The player I was describing is Kahlil Felder. And I know what you’re thinking — who’s Kahlil Felder?
Felder plays for Oakland University in the Horizon League, and although he is only 5’9″, puts up big numbers — he’s averaging 24.6 ppg, 8.9 apg, and 4.6 rpg so far this season. As a matter of fact, his 8.9 apg leads the nation.
Felder is a gifted athlete who has — despite being under the radar — established himself as one of the premier scorers and passers in the country, and is now making the case to be recognized as the best mid-major guard in college basketball.
He can do it all — he can shoot from deep, where he hits 40 percent of his three-point attempts, drive to the basket and get to the line, where he is an elite free throw shooter, or if try to double-team him, find the open man with a perfectly-placed pass. In other words, he’s unstoppable.
And if you’re not watching him, you’re missing out on something special.
Following a breakout sophomore season in which he was the only player in the country to average 17 or more points and seven or more assists per game, Felder was named the Horizon League Preseason Player of the Year before the 2015-16 season, and was a big reason why the Golden Grizzlies were picked to finish second in the conference behind Valparaiso.
This season, Felder has led Oakland to a 6-3 start, most recently scoring a career-high 34 points in the team’s 76-64 win over Toledo last Saturday. For his efforts, Felder was named the Lou Henson Award National Player of the Week, marking the second time this season he has received the recognition.
If Felder continues his play, more awards and recognition will follow, especially if Oakland has success this season. Ask experts how far Oakland will go this year, and most will tell you as far as Felder leads them.
Winning the league won’t be easy, especially with the way Valpo has played this season, but with a player like Felder, you can’t count out the Golden Grizzlies. If Oakland does make it to the NCAA Tournament, anything is possible, as Felder is capable of leading the team in a March run similar to how Steph Curry did at Davidson.
Is Felder the next Steph Curry? No, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t keep an eye on the undersized guard playing for the other Oakland team. Felder is building his own legacy, and it’s time for the nation to take notice — starting right now.