Most of us would agree the Zips' offensive line had some bad games this season.
J.D. Brookhart wasted little time in filling his commit list with solid blockers, including two more who committed this week.
- Casey Estrada, a 6-foot-5, 285-pound tackle from Sacramento City Community College, committed today. Rivals.com gives Estrada three stars. He chose Akron over a scholarship offer from Wyoming and interest in Temple. Estrada played with a huge offensive line (by junior college standards) at Sac City. Of the five juco prospects Akron is targeting, Estrada is the best, according to Rivals.com. That list includes two receivers, a defensive end and a cornerback. I can't find much more on Estrada, but he should be able to start next season. It appears he'll have two years of eligibility remaining.
- Jake Anderson, a 6-4, 278 guard from Erie, Pa., also committed today. He had scholarship offers from Connecticut, Ohio and Buffalo. Anderson's official visit to Connecticut came during the Huskies' loss to Cincinnati. He rated it a 8.5 or 9, because no school "can be exactly perfect." Scout.com lists Anderson as a defensive tackle. That's probably wrong for his college position. Both major recruiting sites give Anderson two stars.
Here is a listing of the Zips' offensive line commitments so far...
- Three stars - Estrada, Paul Simkovich
- Two stars - Anderson, Dan Ronsman, Zac Kasperek
That's a great O-line class, and we still have two months until signing day.
It's early, but the Zips are running away as the MAC's best recruiter again. All the other teams are just doing so-so. Kent State is having an awful recruiting season. The Flashes' nine recruits average 0.89 stars, compared to Akron's 2.25.
Here are some updates from the Zips' other three-star potential recruits...
- Kahlil Permenter, a safety from Maryland, will sit out next season because of an injury. He'll probably attend prep school or a junior college. Permenter turned down scholarship offers from Akron, Temple and Boston College.
- Cornelius Ward, a cornerback from Maryland, visited Miami (Ohio) and that school sits on top of his list. Akron, Buffalo and Marshall are the other schools to offer him a scholarship.
- Aaron Gresham, an inside linebacker from Florida, didn't mention Akron in a recent Rivals.com story. The nation's No. 33 linebacker will probably end up at one of his other offers: Louisville, South Florida, Florida International or Central Florida. Florida, Michigan State and West Virginia are also interested.
- Renaldo Sageese, a defensive tackle from Montreal, is probably headed to Illinois. Minnesota also has offered him a scholarship. Akron has not.
- Mark Wooldridge, a running back from Walsh Jesuit High School, is not interested in staying close to home. He visited campus last week. Wooldridge's finalists are Marshall, Bowling Green, Wisconsin, West Virginia and Illinois.
- Morgan Williams, a running back from Canton McKinley, plans to visit Indiana and Akron, who are the only scholarship offers for the two-time Ohio Division I Player of the Year. I'm a bit surprised the Zips were late in offering Williams a scholarship. Rivals.com says he's the state's No. 2 running back prospect and 27th best in the nation. There must be something scaring off the other big schools.
Pat Bangtson signed two left-handed pitchers and a catcher.
Bangtson said the team focused on the team's needs behind the plate and against right-handed hitters.
- Andrew Turocy is the brother of current Zips righty hurler Frank Turocy. The younger brother had a 1.45 ERA and .469 batting average his junior year. Bangtson expects him to help on offense as well.
- Scott Foster, a product of Green, was 6-2 with a 1.40 ERA last year.
- Dan Burant, a catcher from Brecksville, was all-conference with a .329 batting average his junior year.
Both Akron's Blue and Gold teams beat Rose Hulman Institute of Technology this weekend in a home match.
The undefeated team's next challenge will come Jan. 13 at Penn State.
Yup. This is the first time I've written about cheerleading.
Forgive me, but I had no idea this even counted as a team.
Well, they submitted a video that earned them a No. 8 ranking nationally -- good enough to earn an invitation to the national competition in early April.
Congrats go out to everyone's favorite cheerleader, Leo Spagnola, and all his death-defying teammates.
I plan to break down Illinois-Chicago sometime tomorrow.
Until then, whet your whistle with a heated discussion about the AK-Rowdies on ZipsNation.org.
Not that anyone asked, but here's my opinion... The Rowdies did something fairly miraculous on Akron's apathetic commuter campus. But they need to be careful not to be too exclusive. The more fans, the better.
I realize they had a mandatory meeting, but the University of Akron cannot afford to turn down fan support at this point. If there is an empty seat in the Rowdies and someone wants to sit there, just let them. It's nice to have a dress code to make it look organized -- much like OU's O-Zone. But sending people away seems like a power trip.
I think it's a great idea to have a spill-over section in the case of the big conference games.
By the way, someone needs to toss the band out of the student section. Holy crap that's dumb.