Kent State and Akron have been on a collision course all season. Both teams enter Friday's game at 22-8 overall and 12-3 in the Mid-American Conference. The game will be nationally televised on ESPN2 in prime time at 8:00 p.m.
The PD's Elton Alexander is calling it "arguably the biggest regular season game ever in Northeast Ohio."
FORD ON THE SENIORS - "We've gone two years, since the start of school last year, we haven't had an off the court incident," Kent State head coach Geno Ford said. "We've had all six of those guys have had 3.0's or better in multiple semesters, we're winning. You don't want to see them go. We've had a fun ride with them."
EMOTIONAL SINGLETARY MATURES - An emotionally spent Chris Singletary was choked up after the game as he talked about his career at Kent State after Saturday's victory. "You guys that have been with me these four years have seen the bad and the good,” Singletary said. “Through it all, Kent State has stuck with me. It means a lot to me and my family. These last four years are something that I will always cherish. These last four years, I've spent more time with these guys, the coaches, Mr. Kennedy than my own daughter. They're my family. I have a lot of bad days and a lot of rough days, but these guys help me get through it. It means so much to me." “Chris has been crying all week long,” said Frank Henry-Ala. “Chris loves Kent State. This meant a lot to him. That was one of my biggest reasons to make sure we got this win at all cost.”
COLES ON GREENE, KENT STATE - Veteran Miami head coach Charlie Coles came away impressed with Justin Greene's 18 point, 11 rebound performance. "That guy might be the MVP of the league," Coles said. "He's the secret to their team because he is so efficient. He was the best player on the floor tonight."
"He worked his butt off. I like to see that in athletes. You hate it when they beat you, but you kind of smile and think, are any of our guys taking notice?”
“Kent State is terrific. It seems as though last year at this time, the guys were not as timely as they are this year. This year, it seems like different guys strike. Simpson is a very good player, and he hurt us down the stretch.”
COACHES ON FRIDAY'S GAME - "Next week should be what this league is all about," Coles said. "That's what this league should be all about, big showdown. Both teams are excellent."
''I told our guys we have put ourselves in position to win the league. That's all we could do,'' Akron coach Keith Dambrot said. ''We have to prepare hard, enjoy the game and realize we may play them again with even more on the line.''
"We'll get to work on that," Ford said. "At this stage of the year we've seen them a lot, they've seen us a lot. You can say it's a big game, that's fair to say."