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Game 1- South Dakota State


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3 minutes ago, NWAkron said:

That 3 game skid PCCC, WMU, and NIU felt like an eternity.  Of course, how the PCCC game ended sent us and apparently the team into a spiral.  Then they dumped Trimble and won out.  

What a clutch, brilliant, and ballsy move by Coach Groce.

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The game will be on ESPN3. Zips are 4 point favorites. SDSU will be an excellent challenge for us, so I hope we're ready. The Jackrabbits went 30-5 and were riding a nation leading 21 game win streak before falling to Providence in the NCAA Tournament last season. This is a GREAT out of conference game to open the season at the JAR. Go Zips!

Screenshot_20221106_084115_Chrome.jpg

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2 hours ago, Let'sGoZips94 said:

College Basketball Sport GIF by NCAA March Madness

 

One of my favorite moments of the entire season! Bud does a ton for the program, and it's cool to have a big money guy like that get so into it. This is when Tribble got the And-1 to go up 7 before the media timeout. Unfortunately, a whole lot of people were texting me and jinxing the game at that point. Damn, so close!

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Last year, I went into the season wanting and needing to see a lot of development from guys that had been here for a couple years. I was most concerned about how Ali, Trimble, Freeman, Dawson, and Bandaogo would take the next step after a few years in the program. Mixed results, I would say. The big thing, of course, was replacing LCJ's production, which was essentially everything.

 

This year is quite different. While technically losing the leading scorer, we did not lose our most important player. I also feel much better about the structure of the program and the team itself, though I am disappointed and a little worried about losing Dawson coming into the season. We have a lot of fun looking new guys to look forward to. I think Hunter has the potential to be the most impactful. I like having a proven MAC shooter in Hankerson. I'm eager to see how the redshirts from last year perform. And I'd like to see a freshman or two get some time. As far as returners, I feel we know what to expect. Rique will be Rique, X can hopefully put a full season together after a slow start last year and an awesome finish, I'd like to see Clarke go from role player to game-changer, I'm hoping Tribble can develop into a stronger finisher and more of a serious threat on the offensive end. 

 

I love the opponent. This team knows how to win games. And their schedule this year is a gauntlet. On back to back nights early in December, they play at Kent and at Bama! This is one of the better nonconference teams to come to the JAR in a long time, and I'm hoping some of the public has taken notice of both the Akron program and what is has become under Groce, and the quality of opponent coming in. 

 

As far as the game goes, I am not going to get too up or too down based on the result in the W/L column with 35 of these things to go. I think it's a fantastic early season test, as is Friday, but I'm not really concerned about RPI and at-large bids in November. Maybe I should be, but I really couldn't care less. As high as my expectations are for this season, I realize that this is a new team that may not be playing the same slow, low possession style anymore. There are new pieces that may take time to make things work. It was a thrill last year to watch the ups and the downs as the team worked out kinks. Groce & Co. put together a masterpiece that came to fruition in March. I look forward to another fun, long, sometimes sad, usually happy journey to Cleveland.

 

GO ZIPS!!!!!!

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4 minutes ago, Blue & Gold said:

The new uniforms are classic and straight 🔥🔥🔥

 

Btw, it's a white out tonight so try to wear white if you're going.  I have new "A" shirts in gold and in blue... but not white :(

From GoZips.com...The Akron Zips men's basketball program will open the 2022-23 season against South Dakota State at James A. Rhodes Arena on Monday, Nov. 7, as both the Zips and the Jackrabbits are coming off 2022 NCAA Tournament appearances. The Zips 122nd season and sixth under head coach John Groce is scheduled to tip-off at 7 p.m. Prior to the game, the program will recognize the 2022 MAC Tournament Championship with a ring ceremony and banner reveal.

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FWIW:

 

Finally paid $20 for the advanced KenPom stuff. Pretty fun to read, and as the season goes on, I would imagine it gets more accurate.

 

Preseason calculations have Akron winning tonight 76-70 (covering -4). The model has Akron going 21-8, 13-5 in the MAC with a 0.1% chance of going 18-0.

 

The KenPom model also predicts a 15-game winning streak from 12/30 vs. Concord, ending with a loss at Toledo on 2/21.

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54 minutes ago, LoyalZIP said:

Last year, I went into the season wanting and needing to see a lot of development from guys that had been here for a couple years. I was most concerned about how Ali, Trimble, Freeman, Dawson, and Bandaogo would take the next step after a few years in the program. Mixed results, I would say. The big thing, of course, was replacing LCJ's production, which was essentially everything.

 

This year is quite different. While technically losing the leading scorer, we did not lose our most important player. I also feel much better about the structure of the program and the team itself, though I am disappointed and a little worried about losing Dawson coming into the season. We have a lot of fun looking new guys to look forward to. I think Hunter has the potential to be the most impactful. I like having a proven MAC shooter in Hankerson. I'm eager to see how the redshirts from last year perform. And I'd like to see a freshman or two get some time. As far as returners, I feel we know what to expect. Rique will be Rique, X can hopefully put a full season together after a slow start last year and an awesome finish, I'd like to see Clarke go from role player to game-changer, I'm hoping Tribble can develop into a stronger finisher and more of a serious threat on the offensive end. 

 

I love the opponent. This team knows how to win games. And their schedule this year is a gauntlet. On back to back nights early in December, they play at Kent and at Bama! This is one of the better nonconference teams to come to the JAR in a long time, and I'm hoping some of the public has taken notice of both the Akron program and what is has become under Groce, and the quality of opponent coming in. 

 

As far as the game goes, I am not going to get too up or too down based on the result in the W/L column with 35 of these things to go. I think it's a fantastic early season test, as is Friday, but I'm not really concerned about RPI and at-large bids in November. Maybe I should be, but I really couldn't care less. As high as my expectations are for this season, I realize that this is a new team that may not be playing the same slow, low possession style anymore. There are new pieces that may take time to make things work. It was a thrill last year to watch the ups and the downs as the team worked out kinks. Groce & Co. put together a masterpiece that came to fruition in March. I look forward to another fun, long, sometimes sad, usually happy journey to Cleveland.

 

GO ZIPS!!!!!!

 

- Clarke seemed to find a groove in the MAC Tournament/NCAA Tournament. He had some insanely clutch moments and nice performances. We need that to continue, as X being off the ball helped open up the offense. 

 

- The Dakotas have treated Akron and the JAR well. NDSU as the Bracket Buster in 2012-13 was awesome (still should never have been a T on Zeke), and now the Jackrabbits coming to Akron after a nice NCAA Tournament appearance last year. Their success is so well documented, I thought they had at least one NCAA Tournament win (they've just come close like Akron). Safe travels for the Jackrabbits, and good luck this season regardless of the result. Thank you for coming to Akron. 

 

- Groce and March is an underrated love story. What he accomplished with last year's team was nothing short of miraculous. 

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Took some time to listen to Groce's interview on 88.1 this morning. He said they have 6 guys who are currently bought in to the "Akron way".  Assume thats X, Freeman, Tribble, Clark, Hankerson, and Hunter. Not that the other guys aren't good teammates/hard workers/talented, just that he needs a few to take the next steps to fill out our 8 man rotation. Something to keep an eye on tonight and as the season progresses. Who will step up?

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31 minutes ago, LZIp said:

Took some time to listen to Groce's interview on 88.1 this morning. He said they have 6 guys who are currently bought in to the "Akron way".  Assume thats X, Freeman, Tribble, Clark, Hankerson, and Hunter. Not that the other guys aren't good teammates/hard workers/talented, just that he needs a few to take the next steps to fill out our 8 man rotation. Something to keep an eye on tonight and as the season progresses. Who will step up?

 

This is the million dollar question that I think we're all asking. There are so many unknowns with the supporting cast, but I at least feel much more confident in the core of this team going into this year compared to the start of last year. 

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3 hours ago, Captain Kangaroo said:

When Netflix creates their "Akron - The Larry Williams Years" mini series, I want Bud to get the lead role. 

Good choice. Unfortunately when the filming gets tough Bud will leave staying totally in character as Williams.

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2 hours ago, LoyalZIP said:

FWIW:

 

Finally paid $20 for the advanced KenPom stuff. Pretty fun to read, and as the season goes on, I would imagine it gets more accurate.

 

Preseason calculations have Akron winning tonight 76-70 (covering -4). The model has Akron going 21-8, 13-5 in the MAC with a 0.1% chance of going 18-0.

 

The KenPom model also predicts a 15-game winning streak from 12/30 vs. Concord, ending with a loss at Toledo on 2/21.

 

Interesting. I went back and forth and actually took SDS +3. Maybe it's all the years of watching KD's teams come out flat to start the year, or just my negative nancy NE Ohio fandom getting in the way. I have a feeling it's going to be a really tight came that can go either way.

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