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  1. 8 points
    Back in the Spring of 2000 I participated in this! I didn't land Zippy, but I did get a call and became a professional Akron mascot....and I got to participate in the Olympic torch relay when it came through Akron on its way to Salt Lake City! What a life achievement!
  2. 6 points
    This is just a thread to discuss the team, the past, the current season as we lead up to the game at PCCC. I have some construction going on at my house, so as I wait for them to leave (and not wanting to to turn on the TV and face all the bad news) I turned to my favorite topic The Zips. This whole Groce/Dambrot thing is dividing us all a bit on here. Looking back at the Dambrot years, they were really exciting. I loved all those trips to Cleveland, but FOR ME I hated the tourney losses more. I went to Detroit for the VCU game. That was just a horrible draw for the Zips and the coaching staff knew it immediately. Having no point guard was bad enough but then two guys got the flu. What was a coach to do? Remind us a bit of what's happening now? While I keep VCU in perspective, there were many more losses at big moments that just left me really sad as a fan. (Ok, just there I sounded like a Bobcat Attack dweller). Dambrot Exits Stage Right: For reasons only known to the parties in the room at the time, Dambrot left for Duquense. He got a big raise and a chance to play in a better conference where good teams are forced to play on his home floor. It's a multi-bid conference where he can rack of quality wins without leaving the conference to get them. It looks like he's doing well. When he left, some players went with him and three guards transferred for various reasons. Maybe some were already planning on leaving. We also lost Big Dog and Kwan. Although, Big Dog was the really big loss and the hardest to replace. The only tall guy left at that point was Eman and the unproven (redshirt) freshman Sayles. The good news was that Ivey and Utomi stayed. So on Dambrot's departure (and to me it doesn't matter whether he poached players or not) there were two solid guys and a back up center who was a foul machine much like a certain other guy we have playing now. Groce Enters Stage Left: John Groce. The Kitten hero and the bane of our existence along with his star guard DJ Cooper. He helped make this vicious rivalry versus Ohio. God, he was annoying. Frenchy called him "a clown." He took Ohio to the second round of the NCAA with a big upset over Georgetown. The next year, with the same team, he lost early in the MAC. That year we had probably the best game I can ever remember attending: MAC championship with over Kent. However, the next year, Ohio, Groce, and Cooper were back and took us out in the finals and then swept into the Sweet 16 with the help of a good draw and then almost took out NC. Many wonder...what if Brian Walsh made that basket? What would have happened to Groce? Well, i assume they might have made an NIT run and would be back the following year with the same team. And who knows what would have happened. Did Groce catch lightning in the bottle? I didn't follow his career at Illinois, but it obviously wasn't good enough to keep him around. They wanted him out and were willing to pay him millions to leave. But it's tough at least for me to compare Big Ten coaching situations to the MAC. So he's fired. And we hire him. We get a good deal. We save some $$ for a few years. What is the goal? What were Williams, Wilson, and Van Horn thinking when they hired Groce? What did they want for the program? Did they want the same regular season success of Dambrot? Or did they want more of the Ohio U model? Or did they want to start over and bring a guy in who could truly bring us to dominance so that we absolutely outclass the BGs and directional schools every season. I have no idea, but I guess my hope is the third option. Maybe some of you think they weighted Groce's prior success too much. I wasn't there. I don't know. This Season: Yes, there were those of us, myself included, who were/are absolutely pro-Groce. Of course, that is subject to change. However, at least for me I want to be optimistic. I liked what I saw with the team he and his staff cobbled together. I like the style of play, and, hell, we were winning. However, a trip to Hawaii, an ugly loss at home to Buffalo, a effortless loss to EMU away, and injuries to our two big men left us wondering what the hell has happened to our team. We certainly aren't used to this. I'm certainly noticing a few more empty seats. Maybe those who will always re-up their tickets don't make it to every game now. But anecdotally the folks I talk to at the game who have been there for years are still positive about the team and the coach. Perspective: As noted above, those tourney losses were hard on me as a fan. I also began to realize last year that these 20+ win seasons were a mirage and not worth much to me as a fan and didn't mean anything at all if we collapsed in the final game. While that record looked good and the company we kept was good, if you knew who we played well it didn't mean that much. We had that home winning streak. Second longest in the nation. But someone on here said that wasn't too hard because we only had to get up for a few games a year at home. (Wow, to only have that problem this year.) So for me, when I heard Dambrot was leaving I was basically indifferent, and I am enjoying a new team, new coaches, and a new start even with the losses. I really want to get a game in Cleveland, but like the rest of you that seems so unlikely. I don't blame Groce for that. Next year I might. But not this year considering the big picture. The Players: On this topic, as to who will stay and who will go I would defer to all of you. If Groce and his group are going with the third option mentioned above of building a dominant program then they may cut a few loose that may surprise us.
  3. 6 points
    Inexcusable, especially when they are short-handed. Kudos to Groce for sticking to his guns.
  4. 6 points
    Now he's featured for 23 minutes per game on a 12-13 New Mexico team. Hope he's happy.
  5. 6 points
    The foul on Cotton leaping over the fallen BSU player that'd just lost the ball was pretty egregious too.
  6. 6 points
    ^^Yawn. I took a peak over there a while back and fans were already growing restless a few games into his tenure after losses to inter-city rivals Robert Morris and Pitt. Get some context Elton, of course Duquesne fans are going to love this compared to what they've dealt with the past 30 years. Being overanalyzed for faults in victory is a sign of a good program. It's natural to want more, especially when those victories weren't leading to anything meaningful in the post season. If you can't handle it, go to a shitty program with no expectations like KD did. I can't remember anyone calling for his head. Shame on us for hoping to raise expectations to something other than a 21+ win season over cupcakes, disappointing MAC-C loss, and inevitable first round NIT/CBI/CIT exit. I guess he's never watched a Buckeye game? People get disappointed if they don't win half of their games by 40+ points. The Steelers just let go of their OC after getting the #2 seed in the conference. Bo Pelini got fired from Nebraska for winning 9 games every year. What was Mike Brown's winning % (the first time he was fired) or David Blatt's when he was let go? I can go on and on.
  7. 6 points
    I have to say I'm getting a chuckle out of all you guys jumping on the Kostolac bandwagon. Earlier in the season several posters had already written him off as a lost cause. Based on what I saw in the early practices I loved the kid. Here was a very athletic big man with a nice touch around the basket. The best part though was even though he is a very nice kid, when he gets on the court he has a certain mean streak in him. He loves the rough play. Early in the season that didn't help him. Too many quick whistles and trying too hard kept him buried on the bench. Now that he is getting quality minutes the game is starting to slow down and he is really showing what he is capable of doing on the court.
  8. 5 points
  9. 5 points
    I think some may be taking joy in Akron's losses and that is much weirder
  10. 5 points
    He scored 48 points in a game and that is a record. PERIOD
  11. 5 points
    As much as I enjoy watching this team in action, the bigger joy I get is when I close my eyes and imagine what this team will look like in 2 years. At the end of previous games, I used to imagine what Parrish, Sayles, and Cotton will look like...today Kostelac earned a spot on that list too. Here's hoping that Patton will do the same soon. The future is bright, fellow Zippers
  12. 4 points
    I catch myself sometimes wondering how KD would do with this team. I then realize he would do very poorly given the difficulty of coaching two division 1 basketball teams at the same time.
  13. 4 points
    Yeah...it would suck to reach the Elite 8.
  14. 4 points
    So we're playing with 7 scholarship players the rest of the season, 4 of which are freshman? Wow... I'd shut Sayles down and heal that wrist properly.
  15. 4 points
    Well we were told that the Zips playing worse than a few weeks ago is a sign of bad coaching, so I'm sure they've been improving despite their loss. *Checks last couple weeks on Duquesne's schedule* Whoops
  16. 4 points
    Discussing Zips BB sucks this year, and it isn't even because we stink. I can't wait for another year or two when we can go a page without mentioning KD
  17. 4 points
    I'd think we could elaborate further than two games (both of which went to OT) when it comes to discussing the merits of each coach, but sure. Again, I'm not saying Groce isn't a good coach or that Dambrot is the greatest of all-time. But as skip-zip pointed out, Dambrot always did more with less. There were so many times I expected a huge dropoff, only to find myself at The Q on Saturday night cheering for the Zips in another title game. I'm confident Groce will have a much better year here next season, and strongly believe he'll get us a NCAA Tournament win before moving on. I base this on my opinion that he is an elite recruiter, which I do not think KD is. But if I'm giving both coaches the same roster of players to work with in this hypothetical situation, yeah, KD's going to squeeze more wins out of the group every single time.
  18. 4 points
    UAZippers: the elevating the Miami freshmen over ours is because: Some on here are always looking for new passive/aggressive ways to diss the coaching staff and the team this season. In this discussion, its that the current staff just isn't getting enough out of our freshmen unlike Miami apparently is or a former coach did. The fact is that you can't quantify what even a Dean Smith or John Wooden would be able to do with this team with these injuries.
  19. 4 points
    Ivey on track to set the Zips all time record for differential scoring in back to back games. Adjusted or not.
  20. 4 points
    Like Will, my son is also a Junior at Hudson. They've both played in a school-sponsored rec basketball league over the winter. Will could dunk a basketball last year, as a Sophomore. That alone makes him unique among the local HS soccer standouts. Great shooter, and ball handler. From a competitive standpoint, he has no business playing in the rec basketball league ...he's head and shoulders above any of the other kids. If he wanted to be an all state Div 2 guard, he could do it. He's the best athlete in the Hudson 2019 class. He lists at 5'10", 165. But he's a "thick" 165. Not the typical slender HS soccer player. He's strong. He could easily be an elite HS football running back or slot receiver too. For the Zips I think you'll see a player that is strong, aggressive and does things at a very high speed. Great coordination. Just a gifted athlete that happened to focus on soccer.
  21. 4 points
    In recent history we have had freshmen who we HATED who turned into beasts. This poster once called Big Dog a "boat anchor". This poster used to scream at the screen when Deji walked onto the Court. Antino was nothing to rave about as a freshman. Zeke was a good rim defender, but was always in foul trouble. Our current frosh have great potential. I see POY written all over K-Lac. Had a rough start, last night gets 10 points and how many dives to the floor? This guy loves to shoot, had to get his sea legs. He will be another Big Dog as a senior. Parrish has all the tools. Going to be a monster junior and senior. I did not like Cotton at all in the beginning. He is already close to playing like a junior. He plays big for a (relatively) small guy. We do have potential for a fairly good finish, and a better future. The youth of this team hurts us now, but will be a home run in a couple of years. And after the last two games, I can understand why no one was after K-Lac - they just didn't have Groces crystal ball. Mark my words, in two years people will be asking: How did that guy ever wind up at Akron?
  22. 4 points
    I look at Sayles and Kostelac, and they are competing well at the D1 level today. The Zips are never going to get the one-and-done lottery pick kid. So you need to find kids with potential and develop them. Zeke went for 5.1 points/3.9 rebs his Freshman year. Big Dog's first season went 3.8/2.8. Kostelac is 6' 11" and 250 lbs as a Freshman. And he's coordinated. That projects well for the next 3 years. Sayles (healthy) is more polished than Kostelac 1.0, but time will tell if he'll be better than the 4.0 version. When all is said and done, I think both their stats will compare more favorably to Zeke and Big Dog than Sweich, Forsythe and Bardo (loved all three of those guys, but you know what I mean).
  23. 4 points
    THERE IS A NEW CENTER IN TOWN
  24. 4 points
    Not to brag, but that was me. You're all welcome.
  25. 4 points
    Have we checked for any quality backup bigs in the RC??
  26. 3 points
    We went down there the last time we played there about 10 years ago. Lexington is a great, great town. The tailgating environment is mammoth, and the home fans are all so polite and friendly to their visitors. It feels like the entire state converged on Lexington for the weekend for a big party. And if you're not careful, you'll find yourself singing "My Old Kentucky Home" with the rest of the crowd before kickoff. I HIGHLY recommend this trip. It's only about 5 hrs. away (depending on how fast you drive).
  27. 3 points
    Give it a rest already!!!!!!!
  28. 3 points
    When Keith took over, he had Romeo, DJ III and Jerimiah Wood... three of the best Zips in recent memory. Groce got, basically, a bucket of spit with one all-MAC calibre player. Huge, huge difference. Keith is my friend since junior high. Loved him here. Happy for him for his payday. Wish him well. But Groce is handling a situation that Keith never faced at Akron.
  29. 3 points
    Oh stop. There were worse crowds during Dambrot's cupcake OOC schedule; actually I remember some similar attendance numbers during conference play under Dambrot when some garbage MAC West teams would come in. Half the issue is the MAC isn't interesting. Of course MAC-play attendance might be down a bit this year, but we've had some solid crowds for how decimated this team. It's up to Groce & co. to win games worth a damn in future seasons to build interest back up. My "filled in decently well" comment was in reference to what the place looked like 10+ minutes before tip, which was a ghost town.
  30. 3 points
    What an informative article, thanks. • Alce chose Akron over eight other Division I teams, including the likes of Miami, Wisconsin, USF and Pittsburgh. • While several schools wanted Alce as a linebacker, Akron pursued him to play running back. • Abraham Alce and Shedro Louis have been known as Thunder and Lightning. Akron was the only DI school to offer Louis. • Alce pulled a fast one on the crowd, revealing a Miami hat....quickly tossed the Canes hat into the crowd and said "I’m taking my talents to the University of Akron" • Zips running backs coach Eric Hickson visited Alce last March....A native of Fort Lauderdale, Hickson recruits South Florida with vigor every year. • Louis (Wide receiver/defensive back) has impacted on offense, defense and special teams....led a deep, talented receiving corps with 614 yards and 11 touchdowns. Louis tended to bring his best in big games
  31. 3 points
    Article about Alce: National Signing Day: Alce, Louis to Akron highlights busy day for Immokalee
  32. 3 points
    With 7 scholarship players? No chance.
  33. 3 points
    Great summary 1981 Grad and you are correct, they are playing worse. They are not playing team defense and missing their assignments. They didn't follow Clarkswgriswold's scouting report which was obviously on point. On offense there is way too much hero ball and there is no ball movement or a general sense of purpose on the court. Even without a full roster, this team is underachieving. Groce's teams always improved at Illinois, even though some years they collapsed before the post-season due to exhaustion trying to over-come injuries/set backs. This team due to a lack of leadership, competitiveness, pride and coachability has hit a wall early on and now it's spiraling out of control. My guess is there is a cancer in the locker room that will not exist next year. It might be one of our best players. It might be 4 of of our best players. Nobody is safe going into next year and they all had better be prepared to compete against walk-ons for the rest of the season because it's obvious to me that Groce is prioritizing culture over wins at this point.
  34. 3 points
    2 years at a lower division. 1 year at a D1 program. I don't see him leaving. Groce has raved about his work ethic and commitment all season. Now that's he's hit a little wall he's out the door? Not buying it.
  35. 3 points
    I think this is the first time Utomi has struggled. He was a huge scorer in high school and didn't have any real expectations placed on him last year. This year, the exodus of so many players combined with his early season play against inferior opponents sent the expectations of him through the roof and I am sure he bought into it to some extent. Now he's being forced into strange territory from jumping center to start the game to guarding the other teams' bigs. I certainly hope it doesn't push him towards a transfer and that he sees reinforcements are on the way. He could be a big part of the future.
  36. 3 points
    Wanted to hit on two points on this post: 1st - I noticed Tim Scippio (early commit and currently unsigned) congratulating players for committing. Based on that I would count him in to sign next week. 2nd - I'm still worried about not bringing in a scholly QB (at least of yet) in this class. Lack of depth could realistically end up being a problem once again after next season. It's probably more likely than not Kato leaves sometime in his career if his dad has any say. Kelley seems like a nice back up based on what I've seen, but is gone after next season. Johns has 2 more years, but one would think he came here to play. Not only did he not play, he switched positions. After next season, it's very possible Ramart could be the starter with a true freshman as his back up.
  37. 3 points
    Been digging but so far haven't heard other names. I'll make sure to share if I do.
  38. 3 points
    This is potentially a very big story. You would think that intrepid Zips beat reporter at 44 E. Exchange would be all over this. Uh, never mind.
  39. 3 points
    Could you imagine our futbol program being limited to Ohio? For that matter, could you imagine Zips futbol being limited to the United States? 😂
  40. 3 points
    Thaaaaaaaaaaaank you.
  41. 3 points
    Was it the Bowling Green game at the very end where the Zips were the beneficiary of a bad out of bounds call? They reviewed it, turns out it was out of bounds on Akron because the opponent slapped across the arm causing the ball to go out. Possession goes the other way, but no foul because you can't review that!?! How does that scenario of events make the game better?
  42. 3 points
    I previously saw plans for the renovated JAR. Then last week I was in a discussion with someone in the development department and brought up those plans. That person quickly moved on to something else which I thought was odd at the time. Really doubt it has anything to do with the coaching change. We exchanged one good coach for another, and I don't think that's how multi-million dollar donors think. When you give enough money that allows you to name an arena or building, you probably figure there will be a few coaching changes over the next 100 years.
  43. 3 points
    A Zips hero! He stayed, he committed, and the best is yet to come.
  44. 3 points
    So what you're telling me is all this time we've been blaming the destruction of the football program and poor attendance on Ianello, when it was possibly related to Segway-Gate?
  45. 3 points
    This may well be Groce's greatest coaching job ever. Totally impressed with the grit of this team. The progression of Kostelac and Cotton has been a joy to watch and Ivey has matured into a true leader who leaves it all on the floor every night. The future looks very bright.
  46. 3 points
    I'm going on gut in the land of overall (not East/West) MAC parity. From what I've seen, there are 2 or 3 teams at the top, two or three at the bottom (two of which the Zips have beaten) and a huge mass in the middle including the Zips. They may be the bottom of the middle. Even if they are at the bottom, it's still damn odd to see them not playing each other at the top of the conference.
  47. 3 points
    Mark Montgomery can't be long for the NIU HC job. Midway through his 7th season, he sits at 84–123 (.406). It really amazed me how this decimated Zips team, with all it's injuries and defections, thoroughly whipped a healthy MAC team. Kudos to the coaching staff for keeping the guys focused. Cotton has been a revelation. Until 3 or 4 games ago he'd really shown nothing that'd foreshadow the run he's been on. Seems like he suddenly became confident, and it's made all the difference in the world. Patton isn't scoring all that much, but he continues to do a nice job on the boards. It will be fun to watch Kostelac develop. He's such a big strong kid as a true freshman. With an off season to work on a low post game, he should make a big impact as soon as next season. Overall, you have to be happy with the coaching, and subsequent growth of all the players. The young guys show continuous improvement, and the older ones have added a lot to their game. Nice to see the Zips honoring football's Andrew Hauser during the game...but they misspelled his name on the big screen - Houser? C'mon, man... Should be a fun Tuesday night game vs. OU. How this Zips teams has a chance against anyone is beyond me...but they do. Let's see Utomi go for 32 again!
  48. 3 points
    Big game on Tuesday. If we win we are 3-4 in the MAC, gives us a winning record, and puts us in the middle of the pack. I think there is a reason to be optimistic. We are rebounding much better. A highlight in yesterdays game was a defensive rebound by 3 zips. This team needs to understand that they need to go for every rebound because we need to outhustle every team we play. Utomi came out of his shooting slump. He is a key to our offensive scheme. Plus Cotten is also shooting the ball very well. This team has already played the class of the league, Toledo and Buffalo early. Although we got killed by Buffalo at home, we stayed with Toledo on the road. That is a good sign. We are getting production from our center. K is getting more confidant. That will only help his game. Finally, this is a very young team. The more experience they get this season, the better they may get. We have already seen Cotten and Klac make big jumps in their play. Who knows what the ceiling is for this team at the end of the season. The one thing I disliked about last years team and many of the recent teams with Dambrot, was our reliance on the 3 ball. Here we have a new coach, new players, new system, and we once again are relying on the 3 ball with about 30 per game. When we shoot the 3 ball well, we win. If not, it can get ugly. Looking forward to the game, go zips!!
  49. 3 points
    @Illini Zip I figured I'd get ahead of the question, "What's PCCC?" PCCC stands for Portage County Community College. Portage County is where Can't State is located. It's just another rivalry-driven derogatory name for our main rival. The original poster got a lot right in his post, but I thought he underestimated or missed Duvivier's ability to get to the basket. This is going to be a great game. I really wish Sayles was going to be healthy for this one. Kostelac is going to be a key factor I think, since he'll be the tallest player on the floor for once (although Doug Taylor at 264 lbs will give him all he can handle); don't leave your feet, Mark! Go Zips! Beat the Bobkittens!
  50. 3 points
    Don't let him fool you. Back in his day, he posted on cave walls!
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