☰ Menu
University of Akron Zips blog

Who is Nevada?

By mrasor Published: December 21, 2006

Men's basketball

If only Nick Fazekas used common sense.

Experts considered the 2006 NBA Draft as one of the weakest in 10 years. Nick, you would've gone pretty high.

Now you'll have to duel Greg Oden and three other stud freshmen, who (if not for David Stern) would have turned pro after high school.

Oh yeah, and now the Zips will pray they can contain you and No. 20 Nevada Friday at 7 p.m. at Rhodes Arena.

Fazekas, a 6-foot-11 forward for the Wolf Pack, is one of college basketball's most complete players. He owns an inside-outside offensive game not seen since Kevin McHale. If that's not enough, he leads the nation in rebounding with 12.8 per game.

Last year, Fazekas terrorized Akron's front line for 24 points and 14 rebounds. That's a front line now without Rob Preston and Matt Futch. Even then, Akron had to double- and triple-down so much that the Wolf Pack shot 63 percent from 3-point land.

Yeah. This team is scary, especially considering Akron has shown it is prone to giving up big nights to players over 6-10 who are only average.

So you're wondering if there's a chance the Zips can win. There is. Akron has won 21 games in a row at Rhodes Arena. Truthfully, though, the Zips haven't played anyone like Nevada on their own court.

Nevada also has weaknesses. Sort of.

This season, the Wolf Pack has more turnovers than its weaker opponents. It would stand to reason that pressuring Nevada's guards in the backcourt would be advantageous. UNLV leveled Nevada its only loss of the year, and the Running Rebels did it by forcing 21 turnovers, while only committing 11 of their own.

Akron will also need to take and make a lot of 3-pointers. Long caroms will be easier to rebound for the Zips. They also need to attack Nevada's guards. The Wolf Pack is quite thin in the backcourt. Foul trouble would force coach Mark Fox to insert some of his inexperienced guards.

Nevada starts three guards. Ramon Sessions is a solid point guard who can get to the hoop. He averages 12.1 points and 4.8 assists per game. Marcelus Kemp makes half of his 3-pointers and is second on the team with 18 points per game.

Still, the game probably will come down to Fazekas. If the superstar makes shots -- especially from the perimeter -- Akron is toast no matter what.

I will have a prediction either tomorrow or Friday. If you can't tell from the tone of this post, I'm not optimistic.

Hopefully Fazekas oversleeps and misses the plane to Akron tomorrow.


Prev Next


Zips sports news, features and notes