Belmont, Vanderbilt, Lipscomb Players Named To Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Watch List

Nick Muszynski and Liam Robbins. Photos: Courtesy of Belmont Athletics and Minnesota Athletics.

College basketball players from Nashville schools continue to get national recognition as Belmont’s Nick Muszynski and Vanderbilt’s Liam Robbins have both been named to the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center of the Year watch list. Lipscomb’s Ahsan Asadullah was also one of the 20 players to be named to the list.

Muszynksi has been one of the Bruins best players over the past three years, helping lead the program to an NCAA Tournament win in 2019 and a conference tournament win in 2020. He became the first Belmont player of the program’s NCAA Division I era to earn first team all-conference honors as a freshman, sophomore and junior. Muszynski averaged 15.0 points, 5.6 rebounds and 1.6 blocked shots per game on 59 percent shooting as a junior. The 6-11 center has 77 career double figure scoring games and is on pace to challenge Evan Bradds’ NCAA Division I era career scoring record (1,921 points). Muszynski was the second-fastest to 1,000 career points in Belmont’s NCAA Division I era and ranks as the program’s career blocked shot leader.

A 7-foot center, Robbins graduated from the University of Minnesota in business and marketing education this summer, and joins the Commodores after a breakout year with the Gophers and two seasons at Drake University. Robbins led the Big Ten and ranked 10th in the nation in blocks last season. He averaged 11.7 points, 6.6 rebounds and 2.7 blocks while shooting 44% and starting all 23 games he played. He also ranked 11th in the conference in rebounding and seventh in offensive rebounding. In two seasons at Drake, Robbins played in 64 games. He started all 34 games as a sophomore in 2019-20 and led the Bulldogs with 14.1 points, 7.1 rebounds and 2.9 blocks per game. He set a school record with 99 blocks— the third most in Missouri Valley Conference history.

Asadullah was Lipscomb’s lead scorer, rebounder, assister and blocker averaging 14.1 ppg, 8 rpg, 3.4 apg and 16 blocks. He led the ASUN in total field goals made (165) and defensive rebounds (157). Asadullah is a two-time All-ASUN First Team and will be the key for the Bisons success this season.

In late January, the watch list of 20 players for the 2022 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center of the Year Award will be narrowed to 10 and then in late February to just five. In March, the five finalists will be presented to Mr. Abdul-Jabbar and the Hall of Fame’s selection committee where a winner will be selected.

Steven Boero