Sometimes it's hard to say whether your team underperformed or an opponent played better than usual,
I'd say Akron's 79-67 win over the lowly Winston-Salem State was a combination of the two.
With 15 minutes remaining in the second half, the Zips trailed. A series of 3-pointers pushed Akron ahead.
Several factors allowed WSSU to be competitive. The Zips ran a zone defense to which the Rams found a weakness. A WSSU player would drive to the hoop and attract a swarm of defenders, leaving the lane open for a pass. The Rams also made 11 of 16 3s. On offense, Akron seemed passive. WSSU, a 1-11 team playing its first season of Division I basketball, certainly looked much better than I expected.
Despite the ugliness, you have to love Akron's balanced scoring. Cedrick Middleton (19 points), Nick Dials (16), Dru Joyce (13) and Romeo Travis (13) all dominated at certain points of the game. And that's a reason why the worst you'll see from the Zips won't be that bad. Rather than relying on one player, who might fall into a funk, Akron has at least five players capable of mass scoring.
The Zips will return to action Saturday at 4 p.m. on the road against Illinois-Chicago. I'll have more on tonight's game tomorrow.