Sorry it has taken so long for the next installment of my recruiting series. I have been really busy at the Indianapolis Star, covering the Triple-A Indianapolis Indians. It has been a lot of fun.
Anyhow, here are the offensive linemen to whom coach J.D. Brookhart and company have offered a scholarship.
It appears Brookhart's staff is thinking big with these offensive linemen this year -- literally and figuratively. After two good classes of beef, Akron is investing in quality over quantity.
James Brunelli became Jodi Kest's second assistant this week. He comes from the University of Albany, where he was an assistant.
Kest said she likes Brunelli because "he is a relentless recruiter."
Kest's other assistant so far is Bob Bolden.
Last, but CERTAINLY not least, the Zips are in Sacramento for the NCAA Championships which begin tomorrow.
The Zips have one key advantage as a team: experience. Four athletes have been to nationals before. Those who have not, Randall Hafner and Auston Papay, are coming off the best discus throws of the careers.
John Russell (pole vault) and Ashley Kaufman (javelin) have a serious shot at becoming Akron's first national champions -- in anything -- since Christi Smith won the heptathlon in 2000.
Natalie Sako and Tomasz Smialek enter nationals in the middle of the pack for high jumpers. But both have been to the NCAA Championships before. That should work in their favor.
The action starts at 11:30 a.m. tomorrow with Kaufman's javelin preliminary event. All six will compete tomorrow. The finals will be Friday.
I hope to have comments from coach Dennis Mitchell tomorrow after the prelims.