Former FCIAC football stars excel for college teams

There were many former high school football players from the FCIAC who were on the college football rosters of teams from seven conferences, independent programs such as UConn and Notre Dame, or college football programs in Connecticut.

Information was obtained from the college websites of teams from six major college conferences, several smaller conferences with most of their schools in the Northeast, along with the independent teams and the colleges from Connecticut.

The seven conferences which had former FCIAC athletes on some of their teams’ rosters were the ACC, Big Ten, Ivy League, Patriot League, NEC, Colonial Athletic Conference and New England Small College Athletic Conference.

There were no former FCIAC players on any of the rosters of the teams in the SEC, Big 12 Conference, Pac-12 Conference, or American Athletic Conference.

Those former FCIAC players on the college rosters for the past 2021 season are listed below, underneath the subheading of which high school they graduated from along with statistics and any highlight achievements:

Bridgeport Central

Navaughn Austin and Jean Desir were both defensive backs for Southern Connecticut State University. Austin was a 5-10, 190-pound sophomore free safety who played in four games. Desir saw action in a pair of games as a 5-foot-7, 170-pound freshman cornerback.

Brien McMahon

Cameron Kelly and Lucky Paul were both linemen for Southern Connecticut State University. Kelly was a 6-foot-1, 255-pound senior defensive end. Kelly had 15 solo tackles and 21 total tackles. Paul was a 6-foot-2, 315-pound offensive lineman.


Jah Joyner played in four games as a 6-foot-5, 250-pound redshirt freshman defensive lineman for Minnesota. Joyner, who was rated the No. 1 recruit in Connecticut by 247Sports after his exceptional senior year for Danbury’s Hatters in 2019, recorded his first career sack for the Golden Gophers in their 18-6 victory Dec. 28 over West Virginia in the Guaranteed Rate Bowl.

Malik Thomas was a 6-foot-1, 190-pound redshirt freshman running back for Central Connecticut State University.

Mason Phuong was a 5-foot-11, 280-pound freshman defensive lineman for Western Connecticut State University.


Andrew Stueber had a very good year as Michigan’s starting right offensive tackle. The 6-foot-7, 338-pound graduate student, who was voted in alternate captain by his teammates in 2021, played in 34 games during his career. He contributed on special teams, had 20 career starts at right tackle and two at right guard. During this past 2021 season, Stueber was an All-American selection by the American Football Coaches Association (second team) and an All-Big Ten selection (first team, coaches; third team, media).

Brian Keating was a 6-foot, 225-pound senior tri-captain and long snapper for UConn who played in 43 games during his career. Keating was the primary long snapper for the Huskies since the 2017 season, excluding the 2020 season when UConn’s season was canceled because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Keating excelled in the classroom. Each university was only allowed to nominate one student-athlete and Keating became a semifinalist nationwide as UConn’s nominee for the William V. Campbell Trophy, college football’s premier scholar-athlete award which recognizes players for their combination of academic success, football performance and exemplary leadership.

William Kirby was a 6-foot-1, 205-pound sophomore running back for Trinity College who rushed for 839 yards on 186 carries and 13 touchdowns in 13 games. He also caught one TD pass and had 32 receptions for 213 yards. Kirby surpassed 100 yards rushing in a game three times, highlighted by the last game of the year Nov. 13 in a 14-7 victory at Wesleyan when he rushed for both touchdowns and 145 yards on 23 rushes to help the Bantams finish 8-1 as the runners-up in the New England Small College Athletic Conference. Kirby was selected to the All-NESCAC Second-Team Offense.

Austin Dehmel, a 6-foot, 195-pound wide receiver for Williams College, also contributed 15 total tackles for an undefeated Williams College team (9-0) which was the New England Small College Athletic Conference champion.

Fairfield Ludlowe

Jake Northrop was a 6-foot-3, 270-pound junior defensive lineman for Villanova. Northrop had one sack among his four total tackles while seeing action in 11 games for a Villanova team which finished 10-3 overall and won the Colonial Athletic Association championship for the first time since 2012 with a 7-1 CAA record.

James Bourque was a 5-foot-10, 194-pound sophomore defensive back who played in nine games for Hamilton and had 37 total tackles and an interception.

Kyle Chamberlain and Chris Chamberlain were both freshmen for Long Island University. Kyle Chamberlain was a 6-foot-3, 215-pound quarterback and Chris Chamberlain was a 6-foot-3, 213-pound tight end.

Fairfield Warde

Joey Gulbin was a 6-foot-3, 195-pound sophomore quarterback for Fordham.

Qasim Danazumi was a 5-foot-10, 165-pound sophomore defensive back for Central Connecticut State University.


Edward Iuteri had 2½ sacks among his 23 total tackles in the nine games he played as a 6-foot, 260-pound sophomore defensive lineman for Tufts. He also forced a fumble.

Mason Muir was a 6-foot-5, 195-pound freshman wide receiver for Bucknell University. Muir played in nine games, starting the final two at wide receiver, and he also played on special teams. His two touchdown receptions were second on the team and he was fourth in receiving yards (152) on 14 catches.

Tysen Comizio was a 5-foot-10, 185-pound junior running back for the University of Pennsylvania. He saw action in seven games and gained 25 yards on a pair of rushes.

Kobe Comizio was a 5-foot-10, 175-pound freshman wide receiver for the University of Pennsylvania.

Callum Abernethy was a 6-foot-4, 255-pound offensive lineman for the University of Pennsylvania.

Gavin Muir was A 6-foot-2, 210-pound junior quarterback for Dartmouth College.

Will Montesi was a 6-foot-2, 225-pound freshman offensive lineman for Army.

Zach Moore was a 5-foot-9, 185-pound kicker/punter for Middlebury.

New Canaan

Drew Pyne was a 5-foot-11½, 200-pound sophomore backup quarterback for Notre Dame. Pyne completed 15-of-30 passes for 224 yards, threw a pair of touchdown passes and had no interceptions. Pyne came off the bench and provided a spark for the Fighting Irish on Oct. 2 during a 24-13 home loss to Cincinnati when he completed nine passes, including a career-long 32-yard TD pass to Braden Lenzy. That cut Notre Dame’s deficit to 17-13 with 8:20 remaining in the fourth quarter as the Irish rallied back from a 17-0 halftime deficit.

Jack Conley was a 6-foot-7, 318-pound redshirt sophomore offensive lineman for Boston College who played in 10 games.

Jack Stewart was a 6-foot-4, 314-pound junior defensive lineman for Michigan.

Will Ahrens was a 6-foot-1, 290-pound redshirt senior defensive lineman for Richmond.


Stephen Macri was a 6-foot-4, 320-pound offensive lineman for Western Connecticut State University.

Tommy Brown was a 6-foot, 190-pound freshman quarterback for Wagner.


Jackson Mitchell started all 12 games for UConn and led the Huskies with 120 total tackles as a 6-foot-2, 229-pound junior linebacker. Mitchell was quite productive three games in a row in which he racked up a combined 45 total tackles. He had 14 tackles against Holy Cross on Sept. 2, on Sept. 11 he had 15 tackles and shared in on a half of a sack against Purdue, and a week later he had a career-high 16 tackles at Army. For the season Mitchell had 6½ tackles for loss, 1½ sacks, three forced fumbles, one interception, and two pass breakups.

Alex Hanna was a 5-foot-7, 170-pound sophomore defensive back for Hamilton. He played in eight games, had 12 solo tackles and intercepted a pass.

St. Joseph

Robert Mihaly had a superb junior year for Trinity College as a 6-foot-4, 292-pound offensive lineman who was selected to the All-New England Small College Athletic Conference First-Team Offense. Mihaly is the epitome of an excellent student-athlete as he was selected to the 2020-21 NESCAC All-Academic Team during his sophomore year.

Phil Pasmeg was a 6-foot-2, 230-pound junior tight end for Sacred Heart University who played in six games.

Jermaine Williams was a 5-foot-10, 320-pound freshman defensive lineman for Central Connecticut State University.


Alain Paul was a 5-foot-9, 199-pound freshman cornerback for Long Island University.


Jake Thaw was a 6-foot, 190-pound sophomore wide receiver for Michigan.

Ryan Fitton and A.J. Konstanty were both tight ends for Cornell University. Fitton was a 6-foot-5, 245-pound fifth-year player who played in all 10 games at tight end and special teams, making nine starts on the offense. He had nine catches for 137 yards, including one touchdown reception. Konstanty was a 6-foot-4, 263-pound sophomore.

Matthew Almansi was a 6-foot-4, 260-pound junior offensive lineman for Trinity College who saw action in three games. Almansi was selected to the 2020-21 NESCAC All-Academic Team during his sophomore year.

Jacob Rizy saw action in two games as a 6-foot-4, 286-pound first-year offensive tackle for Harvard University.

Sam Milberg was a 6-foot-5, 289-pound freshman offensive lineman for Holy Cross.

Trinity Catholic

Izaiah Sanders was a 6-foot-3, 210-pound wide receiver who had a solid senior season for Southern Connecticut State University. Sanders caught 48 passes, including five touchdown receptions, for 635 yards in 10 games. Sanders had a great game Oct. 23 at Franklin Pierce when he had two TD receptions and nine total receptions for 124 yards while helping lead the Owls to a 43-24 victory.

Frank Alfano was a 5-11, 180-pound graduate student cornerback for Sacred Heart University. Alfano had 20 solo tackles among his 29 total tackles while helping SHU’s 8-4 Pioneers win the Northeast Conference championship with a 6-1 record in the NEC.

Jasyn Andrews saw action in three games as a 6-foot-3, 275-pound junior defensive lineman for Rhode Island.


Mileeq Green and Kenneth Okoroafor were both freshmen for Western Connecticut State University. Green was a 5-foot-11, 175-pound free safety who had 16 total tackles. Okoroafor was a 5-foot-10, 173-pound wide receiver.

Colton Nicholas was a 6-foot-2, 225-pound junior tight end for Sacred Heart University.

Adam Tolk saw action in two games as a 5-foot-10, 195-pound sophomore linebacker for Amherst.


Ja’Kai Young was a 6-foot, 175-pound junior defensive back for Southern Connecticut State University. Young had 24 solo tackles among his 32 total tackles and on Oct. 1 he intercepted a pass and returned it 27 yards to contribute to a 23-7 victory.

Matt Alswanger was a 5-foot-11, 190-pound graduate student backup kicker for Duke University. Alswanger previously had a four-year career at Tufts University from 2017-20, where he converted 14-of-19 field goals, 84-of-92 extra-point kicks, and graduated as the school record holder for career PATs and PATs in a single season when he kicked 31 of them in 2018.


Michael DiConstanzo was a 6-foot, 220-pound junior defensive end for Western Connecticut State University. DiConstanzo had two sacks among his 15 total tackles.

Mike Coffey was a 6-foot-4, 235-pound first-year tight end for Sacred Heart University.

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