The University of Akron men’s basketball team announced the signing of two guards Thursday afternoon.
Antino Jackson, a 5-foot-11 point guard from Cypress, Texas comes to the Zips after averaging 19 points, five assists and four rebounds in his senior. A first team all-district and Academic All-District selections, he led Cypress Springs High School to a 22-12 record and a spot in the playoffs.
Zips coach Keith Dambrot said that Jackson is someone who will get a shot at playing right away.
“That’s why we signed him,” he said Thursday afternoon.
The point guard position proved to be an Achilles heel for the Zips last season with neither transfer Nyles Evans (5.3 points and 1.4 assists per game) or veteran Carmelo Betancourt(2.1 points, 2.2 assists per game) ever seizing the starting job.
While Dambrot tried to compensate by using Quincy Diggs at the position, he never truly looked comfortable running the offense. The result: the Zips often looked disjointed and on many occasions lacked offensive flow.
And how did someone’s skill set fall into UA’s lap? Biology and luck.
Jackson stood just 5-foot-7 in his junior year, Dambrot said. He gained four inches in his senior year. With that growth spurt, Jackson will bring quickness, a great work ethic and the ability to shoot the ball.
In a school better known for its football talent, Ivey, a 6-foot-4 combo guard, arrives from Cleveland’s Glenville High School where he averaged 24 points, eight rebounds and five assists per game. Ivey also earned Second-Team Northeast Lakes All-District honors.
Ivey brings the ability to play both positions to the team. Dambrot said that he believes he was under recruited.