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Z.I.P.

Old Guys Trivia

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Aloha Akron fans! This week marks the start of college basketball season, and that's true here in the 50th state as well. On Friday, the home Rainbow Warriors play Tennessee State. Which immediately started me thinking about the biggest road trip of my young life. When I was 12 my uncle took me with him to see the Zips play in the 1972 NCAA Division II Finals tournament in Evansville, IN. Now there should be A FEW members of this board who remember that Akron team, which played Roanoke in the national championship game, but finished as runner-up. Now what stood out about Akron's performance in the tournament was the national semi-final game vs Tennessee State. I believe TSU came into the game undefeated, and was referred to as the best small-college basketball team of all time. Akron scored the final hoop of the first half, but was still down 12 at the start of the second half. The star of the game for Akron was Massillon product, center Bryan Westover, who scored on a put-back at the buzzer to force overtime. I believe the Zips took over and won going away in OT -- though I can't find the score.

The question that's digging my brain is this: Who was the Tennessee State star -- I think the D-II Player of the Year, who went on to a fairly long NBA career. I believe he played for the Portland Trailblazers. Can anybody out there figure out who he was -- I think a post player with good size, probably a PF in the NBA.

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Aloha Akron fans! This week marks the start of college basketball season, and that's true here in the 50th state as well. On Friday, the home Rainbow Warriors play Tennessee State. Which immediately started me thinking about the biggest road trip of my young life. When I was 12 my uncle took me with him to see the Zips play in the 1972 NCAA Division II Finals tournament in Evansville, IN. Now there should be A FEW members of this board who remember that Akron team, which played Roanoke in the national championship game, but finished as runner-up. Now what stood out about Akron's performance in the tournament was the national semi-final game vs Tennessee State. I believe TSU came into the game undefeated, and was referred to as the best small-college basketball team of all time. Akron scored the final hoop of the first half, but was still down 12 at the start of the second half. The star of the game for Akron was Massillon product, center Bryan Westover, who scored on a put-back at the buzzer to force overtime. I believe the Zips took over and won going away in OT -- though I can't find the score.

The question that's digging my brain is this: Who was the Tennessee State star -- I think the D-II Player of the Year, who went on to a fairly long NBA career. I believe he played for the Portland Trailblazers. Can anybody out there figure out who he was -- I think a post player with good size, probably a PF in the NBA.

I wouldn't call 71-69 "going away."

I'll go with Truck Robinson.

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Zips media guide says the Zips beat Tennessee State 71-69 in OT. Their star player was Ted "The Hound" McClain.

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I had just graduated but I traveled back to Akron to see a game - might have been the first game of the regionals? I know it was around March of '72

I remember Len Paul, Larry Quarles, Jinx Jenkins. Guys who could start for us today, no question. We were a D2 team that had a D1 player or three.

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I think @Zipmeister had the player you're looking for in forward Leonard "Truck" Robinson. I remembered guard Ted "The Hound" McClain, perhaps because of the Big Dog connection. :lol: Truck was drafted #22 in the 1974 draft while The Hound was drafted #22 in the 1971 draft, so Hound would not have played in the 1972 game. Both players had solid professional careers. No wonder Tennessee State was such a power in those years.

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I'm old enough to remember that, but wasn't living in Akron at the time, and actually had no idea that The Univ. of Akron even existed :unsure:

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I wouldn't call 71-69 "going away."

I'll go with Truck Robinson.

Hey -- I was 12, and it was 41+ yrs ago! Not to mention my oldtimers disease catching up.

Well, for those who guessed Leonard "Truck" Robinson, you win the second-place trophy (provided you pay for it yourself). Truck, the NBA bad boy for many years was a sophomore on that team, according to various reports. The player I best remember spent seven seasons with the Trailblazers, and was the first player from the franchise to have his number retired. Lloyd Neal was a senior on the 1972 TSU team, and at just 6'7" was an undersized NBA big man. He played on the Blazers 1977 NBA championship team with Bill Walton, Mo Lucas and Larry Steele. I was thinking maybe Steele was the guy I was thinking of before putting my finger on Neal. Hopefully I can find a TSU fan or two on Friday who remembers those guys. I remember once I ended up sitting with a guy at a Tennessee Tech game, who I found out had hired Coleman Crawford to his first coaching job as a high school coach in Georgia. No comments now (ahem CK) saying he should have stayed there! lol

P.S.: Bonus points to anyone who remembers Tennessee State's all-time greatest player, who spent nine seasons with the NY Knicks.

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Hey -- I was 12, and it was 41+ yrs ago! Not to mention my oldtimers disease catching up.

Well, for those who guessed Leonard "Truck" Robinson, you win the second-place trophy (provided you pay for it yourself). Truck, the NBA bad boy for many years was a sophomore on that team, according to various reports. The player I best remember spent seven seasons with the Trailblazers, and was the first player from the franchise to have his number retired. Lloyd Neal was a senior on the 1972 TSU team, and at just 6'7" was an undersized NBA big man. He played on the Blazers 1977 NBA championship team with Bill Walton, Mo Lucas and Larry Steele. I was thinking maybe Steele was the guy I was thinking of before putting my finger on Neal. Hopefully I can find a TSU fan or two on Friday who remembers those guys. I remember once I ended up sitting with a guy at a Tennessee Tech game, who I found out had hired Coleman Crawford to his first coaching job as a high school coach in Georgia. No comments now (ahem CK) saying he should have stayed there! lol

P.S.: Bonus points to anyone who remembers Tennessee State's all-time greatest player, who spent nine seasons with the NY Knicks.

I know the answer, but I'm not saying until my prize for your last contest arrives at my door.

hint: he also played for the Nationals and the Lakers.

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I remember Nate Barnett, Dick's nephew, who played for the Zips in the early 70's, then went on to play for the Indiana Pacers in the old ABA.

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I remember Nate Barnett, Dick's nephew, who played for the Zips in the early 70's, then went on to play for the Indiana Pacers in the old ABA.

Obviously he had a great Momager.

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