University of Akron men’s basketball head coach Keith Dambrot announced on Thursday that Peter Agba (Greensboro, N.C.), Emmanuel Olojakpoke (Houston, Texas) and Joshua Williams (Akron, Ohio) have signed national letters of intent to play for the Zips in the 2015-16 season.
Agba, a forward who is 6-foot-6 and 210-pounds, averaged 13 points and 8 rebounds as a junior while helping Greensboro Day School to the PACIS conference championship and Division 3-A state championship game in 2014. He was named PACIS All-Conference and was the team’s co-MVP for 2013-14. One of the highlight performances from his junior campaign included a 24-point, 29-rebound effort against High Point Christian on Jan. 8.
“Peter is a relentless rebounder with an outstanding motor and energy, and no player will out-work him on the floor,” Dambrot said. “He comes from a great high school program and has been well-coached.”
Olojakpoke, a forward who is 6-foot-8 and 190-pounds, averaged 13.5 points, 8.7 rebounds and 5.6 blocked shots per game as a junior at Cypress Springs High School. He finished his junior campaign shooting 64.4 percent from the floor (192-for-298). He earned Defensive Player of the Year honors in his district (17-5A) while helping CSHS to a 22-12 record in 2013-14 and a spot in the 2014 district playoffs. Olojakpoke was the high school teammate of current Zips freshman Antino Jackson.To read more or comment...
University of Akron volleyball head coach Ron Arenz announced Thursday that Patience Brown (Bloomington, Ill.) and Abbey Pawlak (Sylvania, Ohio) have committed to join the program for the 2015-16 academic year
“We are looking forward to having Patience and Abbey as freshmen for the 2015 season,” Arenz said. “The pair brings a new dimension to what will be a veteran squad for us next year.”
Brown, a 5-9 middle hitter out of University High school in central Illinois, led her team to back-to-back conference championships for the last two seasons. She was named team captain as a senior, and earned several all-tournament team nods in the club circuit.
“Patience is as dynamic of a student-athlete as you can get, and she comes from one of the best volleyball breeding grounds in the country,” Arenz said. “Her speed, jumping ability and fluid arm make her a threat along any part of the net. I anticipate great things from Patience during her time as a Zip.”To read more or comment...
University of Akron softball head coach Julie Jones announced Thursday that Caroline Cahill, Gabby Fredericks, Kelly Hysong and Lilli Piper have committed to join the program for the 2015-16 academic year.
Cahill, a catcher from Huber Heights Wayne High School in the Dayton area, hit .391 with 13 RBI as a junior in 2014. She earned second-team all-conference honors and was named to the All-Ohio underclassmen southwest team a season ago. As a sophomore, Cahill earned honorable mention all-conference honors and was named the team's most valuable player.
“Caroline stands out with her on-field leadership abilities,” Jones said. “She is the perfect student-athlete to come in and help our pitchers get better with her communication skills behind the plate.”
Fredericks, a catcher/first baseman out of New Philadelphia High School, was named first-team all-conference and first-team all-district in each of the past two seasons. She also earned honorable mention All-Ohio status as a sophomore and was part of the All-Ohio second team last year as a junior. Fredericks has hit over .460 every year, including a .523 mark in 2014 that featured 46 hits, 18 for extra bases. She has struck out just three times total in three seasons.To read more or comment...
University of Akron women’s basketball coach Jodi Kest received national letter of intents from high school seniors Lilli Piper and Fredniqua “Shaq” Walker.
“This is a great week for our program as we add two exceptional student-athletes to our Akron family,” Kest said. “Our recruiting philosophy has always been to keep the local talent home. Lilli and Fredniqua are two great local talents that will bring a lot to our program.”
Piper, a 5-foot-10 guard who lives in Norton and attends Walsh Jesuit, averaged 12.3 points, 8.6 rebounds and 5.9 assists per game last season. She earned All-Ohio Special Mention recognition as a junior, and was also named first team all-district.
“Lilli is a phenomenal athlete with a tremendous work ethic and drive,” Kest said. “She possesses great basketball IQ and an extremely versatile game that will allow her to play multiple positions.”To read more or comment...
The University of Akron women’s swimming and diving head coach Brian Peresie announced on Wednesday that 11 student-athletes have committed to the program for the 2015-16 academic year.
The 11 recruits are: Emily Christophersen, Karly Crail, Ragen Engel, Sadie Fazekas, Alexandra Hedden, Kim Jones, Emma King, Madison Myers, Ashley Schrock, Victoria Shaffer and Hannah Smith.
“My staff and I are thrilled to welcome the Class of 2019. We feel each student-athlete brings the specific skill set and character we were seeking,” Peresie said. “Our team is comprised of driven individuals striving to represent the University of Akron at the highest level. We feel these young ladies will fit in right away and make a tremendous impact on our program.
“I want to applaud both Meg Finnerty and Chris Medvedeff’s efforts as we sought out to bring in a transformational recruiting class. We feel we have achieved our objectives and look forward to a bright future with Zips Swimming and Diving.”To read more or comment...
It would be very easy to make this post about the five things Akron Zips need to do to beat the Buffalo Bulls tonight and write all of the bullet points regarding turnovers. We’ll skip the silliness in favor of some serious observations because UA is in a serious spot in that they would greatly enhance their bowl opportunities were they to leave upstate New York with a much-needed “W.”
It would boost the program. It would boost their confidence and it would right a ship that’s been blown off its course through the efforts of its crew. So what do the Zips need to do to beat the Bulls?
Stop the turnovers: Yeah, I’m freakin’ Captain Obvious. I’ve been stating this for three games, but somehow they’ve not been able to do it through 14 turnovers in those three games. Part of it is their fault, especially in one area – interceptions. The Zips offense has a route that’s meant to do nothing but take advantage of height advantages they have with their outside receivers. Last week, it was thrown a couple of times and intercepted a couple of times because the receiver did do his job. He had two options on the play: catch it or stop the receiver from doing so. Simple enough.
Don’t be afraid to run the ball: Yup, the spread is basically a passing offense, but in their two running backs – Jawon Chisholm and Conor Hundley – they have a duo that each rush for better than five yards per pop.To read more or comment...
From a University of Akron athletics department news release:
The University of Akron athletics department will begin its search for a new leader for the women's soccer program, as Director of Athletics Tom Wistrcill announced Thursday that Vernon Croft will not return as head coach.
"Earlier today, I informed coach Croft that he has been relieved of his duties, effective immediately," Wistrcill said. "Under his leadership for the past several seasons, we have developed well-rounded student-athletes. Unfortunately, we were not able to meet our goals on the playing field. After a comprehensive evaluation, I have determined that our women's soccer program needs to move in a new direction."
Croft led the Zips for the last three seasons. He was named the interim head coach prior to the 2012 campaign. Akron was 17-34-5, 6-25-2 in Mid-American Conference play, under Croft.
The University of Akron football team will face their most significant game in coach Terry Bowden’s short tenure Tuesday when they play the Bowling Green Falcons Tuesday night at InfoCision Stadium.
The Zips (4-4, 2-2) can still control their destiny in the Mid-American Conference’s East Division with a win over Bowling Green (5-3, 3-1). A win ties them for the division lead, giving them the inside track to eventually play for the conference championship in Detroit.
But UA will have to fix one problem that has plagued the team in their past two games – turnovers.
“What we talked to our players about is eliminating the turnovers,” Bowden said. “I don't think the effort changed. I don't think their attitude changed. The turnovers changed.”To read more or comment...
Funeral services have been set for former University of Akron director of basketball operations Dan Peters, 60, who died from pancreatic cancer Monday.
Mr. Peters, a graduate of Canton Central Catholic High School and Kent State, also coached at Ohio State, Youngstown State, Walsh University and the University of Cincinnati.
Calling hours are 4-8 p.m. Friday at Paquelet Funeral Home, 1100 Wales Road NE, Massillon, 44646. A funeral mass will be held at Queen of Heaven Catholic Church, 1800 Steese Road, Uniontown, 44685, on Saturday at 10:30 a.m.
Messages may be sent to the family at www.paquelet.com.
From a Mid-American Conference news release:
CLEVELAND– With a strong commitment to sportsmanship, integrity and a student-first student-athlete experience, the Mid-American Conference (MAC) Council of Presidents affirms its commitment to the collegiate experience. The MAC will support the redefinition of an athletics grant-in-aid to include cost of attendance if autonomous legislation is enacted during the annual NCAA Convention in January, 2015.
The presidents of the MAC are committed to remaining a strong, vibrant and values-oriented NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision Conference, focused on the overall campus life experience of the individual student-athletes which includes academic success and graduation, social growth and teams competing at the highest competitive levels.
“The MAC is dedicated to supporting our student-athletes in the classroom, the community and on the playing field with the ultimate goal of graduating and having a great collegiate experience,” said MAC Commissioner Jon Steinbrecher.To read more or comment...