To be honest, I have never heard of them.
I have a perfectly good excuse. They have been in Division I for only a week.
They leaped into the Atlantic Sun conference, which has some nice wins to its credit so far (Belmont over Cincinnati, Gardner-Webb over Kentucky, Mercer over USC).
Before making the jump, USCU won two of the past three Peach Belt Conference championships. Consequently, they went to the Division II tournament.
The first thing that pops out about their roster is 7-foot-2 Nick Schneiders. He played 14 months on Germany's playgrounds before USCU recruited him. (Kinda sounds like "The Air Up There," doesn't it?) Schneiders is still raw, but he can rebound.
Head coach Eddie Payne formerly held that job at East Carolina and Oregon State. He is known for a high-tempo game with three guards in the starting lineup. His son Luke Payne is one of those guards. He is a smart distributor and good shooter. Another good guard is Jeremy Byrd, whose quickness leads to a lot of steals.
Bobby Davis, a junior college transfer, leads the team with points after putting up 13 in a loss to Utah.
Those four guys could probably play for some MAC teams. With nine freshmen on the roster, however, depth will be a problem. If the Spartans love to run so much, they'll need a lot more.
Akron needs to push the ball, get a big lead and cruise.
Prediction: Akron 78, USCU 49
Akron Beacon Journal
The line is Akron minus 25 with an over-under of 110.
Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
Akron will play Northern Illinois in the MAC Tournament semifinal tonight.
If you remember, the Huskies knocked the Zips out of the tournament last year.
Coach Caleb Porter said the team is very confident heading into the weekend.
- 2013 (110)
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- 2011 (225)
- 2010 (266)
- 2009 (380)
- 2008 (327)
- 2007 (561)
- 2006 (605)
- 2005 (89)