I have gone over the football targets the past couple weeks. A co-worker of mine at the Indy Star reminded me that the summer is also a hot time for men's basketball recruiting.
So here is what I could dig up about some of the players Akron has interest in...
- Steve Swiech, a 6-foot-9, 240 pound center from Elizabeth, Pa. I remember coach Keith Dambrot telling me that Akron cannot get a polished big man. Well, Swiech (pronounced SWIK) looks pretty close to that. As a junior, he was on the Class AAA third team, scoring 26.8 points and 12 rebounds per game. The real shocker is that Swiech plays defense, too. He averaged 8 blocks a game. Scout.com ranks Swiech as the 19th best center recruit in the nation. The site also gives Swiech three stars, which would rank him higher than any Zips recruit in recent years. He recently underwent surgery on his pinky toe to fix a stress fracture. Akron and Duquesne are his only offers so far, according to Scout. Swiech also is interested in Kent State, Pittsburgh, Notre Dame, Penn State, Wake Forest, West Virginia and Xavier. Although Pitt has not yet offered a scholarship, the Panthers seem to be the frontrunner for Swiech.
- Kevin Johnson, a 6-5, 185 power forward from Chicago. I can't find much on this guy. Scout.com says he has offers from Akron, Ohio and Ball State. The site gives Johnson two stars, which sometimes is a euphamism for the guy not being important enough to rank.
- Jessie Bosnik, a 6-1, 185 shooting guard from Saint Mary's, Pa. Scoring 18.1 points per game, Bosnik made the Class A first team as a junior in Pennsylvania. Scout.com says Bosnik has plenty of teams interested in him, but no scholarship offers. Those teams are Akron, Colgate, Kent State, Penn State, Pittsburgh, St. Bonaventure, St. Francis, West Virginia and Youngstown State. Bosnik also has two stars. Check his Rivals.com profile to view Bosnik's other stats.
For the most part, most of Akron's targets -- both in basketball and football -- are above average at best. The Zips have not really been in the running for a nationally revered stud recruit in the past few years, despite solid recruiting classes from Dambrot and J.D. Brookhart.
Where am I going with this? Well, one of Akron's targets this year was a big-time player...
- Kosta Koufos, a 7-foot, 230 center from Canton. Rivals.com ranks Koufos as the 12th best player in the country, regardless of position. Despite his size, Koufos considers himself a power forward in college because of his shooting ability. Here's the kicker: Koufos verbally committed to Ohio State in late May. He had offers from Illinois, Louisville, Maryland, Michigan and Michigan State. Two schools had interest but had not offered: Akron and North Carolina. Oh well. It's still a good sign that Koufos would report that he had interest in the Zips to a national Web site.
As Captain Kangaroo reported on ZipsNation.org, receiver Vincent Hill has verbally committed to play at Akron.
The 5-10 player from Fort Washington, Md. chose Akron over Colorado, Connecticut, Maryland, Michigan State, North Carolina, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, Temple, Virginia, West Virginia and Kent State.
Hill is the Zips second verbal commitment and also their second receiver, behind Jerome Royal.