Former Morehead State University basketball standout Xavier Moon (17) and former MSU football star Jake Sutherland (18) are taking the athletic abilities they first displayed as Eagles and using them to soar to the professional ranks.
Moon has agreed to a standard contract with the Toronto Raptors’ NBA G-League affiliate, the Raptors 905. The name “905” refers to the local area code of the suburban Greater Toronto Area. The hoops club fields their competition at the Paramount Fine Foods Centre in Mississauga, Ontario. By adding Moon, Raptors 905 will look to get back to the top of their class, having won the league championship in 2016-17 and taking runner-up honors in 2017-18.
A native of Goodwater, Alabama, his expeditions after his most recent stint saw him win League Player of the Year honors with the Edmonton Stingers of the Canadian Elite Basketball League. Moon averaged nearly 20 points and six assists per contest while connecting on 43% of his attempts from behind the arc.
The Stingers finished with the second seed in the league playoffs, losing in the semifinals to eventual league champion, Saskatchewan Rattlers, led by former Morehead State center Chad Posthumus. Before that, Moon began his professional endeavors with the London Lightning of the National Basketball League of Canada (NBLC), also based in Ontario.
Moon graduated from Morehead State University in May 2017 with a bachelor’s degree in exercise science.
As a senior at MSU, Moon took home First-Team All-Ohio Valley Conference honors, started in all 30 games and averaged 16 points and five assists per game while shooting 41% from long range. His scoring acumen is not lost on Eagles’ fans, who witnessed Moon record double-figure scoring performances in 25 of 30 tilts in his senior campaign, eclipsing 20 markers on six occasions.
Additionally, he tabbed what was believed to be the first-ever triple-double in Morehead State men’s basketball history when he logged 25 points, 11 assists and 10 rebounds versus Central Arkansas on Dec. 19, 2016, in Johnson Arena. Moon outdid himself only one other time, pouring in a career-high 26 points at Austin Peay on Jan. 19, 2017, in Clarksville. He scored 21 of those 26 in the second half, finishing 10-of-16 from the field, 6-of-10 from three-point land.
As for Sutherland, he saw his name in the public eye as the New York Guardians selected him in the 2019 XFL Draft.
The revival of the XFL will see eight teams play a 10-game schedule beginning in February. Other organizations include the Dallas Renegades, Houston Roughnecks, Los Angeles Wildcats, Seattle Dragons, DC Defenders, St. Louis Battlehawks and Tampa Bay Vipers. The New York Guardians will play their home games at Met Life Stadium and be coached by former New York Giants offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride.
The 6-foot-5 Sutherland is a tight end who finished his MSU career in 2017. He hauled in 53 passes for 515 career yards and scored five touchdowns – all during the 2016 and 2017 seasons.
A native of Ortonville, Michigan, he also made 29 career tackles on special teams and blocked one kick. Sutherland was also a three-time Pioneer Football League Honor Roll member and was named to the Academic All-PFL Second Team as a senior in 2017. He graduated in May 2018 with a bachelor’s degree in exercise science.
For more information on MSU athletics, visit www.msueagles.com.