August 29, 2012

"Bowden Ball" Kicks Off on Thursday Against UCF

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UCF at Akron Game Notes in PDF Format
Terry Bowden – UCF Week Press Conference Video
Terry Bowden – MAC Weekly Media Teleconference Audio

Game Day Coverage:
Listen to Free Audio Stream (SportsRadio1350.com)
Watch ESPN 3 Web Cast
Follow Free Live Statistics

GAME 1


(rv/rv) Central Florida (0-0) at Akron (0-0)

Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012
7 p.m. ET
InfoCision Stadium-Summa Field (30,000)

Television: ESPN3 – Keith Morehouse (play-by-play) and Je'Rod Cherry (analyst).

Webcast/Live Statistics: Live statistics available free of charge on GoZips.com. Webcast not available due to ESPN3 coverage.

Radio: Akron-IMG Sports Network – Fox Sports Radio 1350 AM (WARF) in Akron (flagship), 1420 WHK in Cleveland, 1440 WHKZ in Warren/Youngstown. Steve French (play-by-play), Brad Detwiler (analyst) and Joe Dunn (sideline) (6 p.m. ET airtime). Free audio stream via SportsRadio1350.com.

Akron Coach Terry Bowden (West Virginia, 1978): Is in his first season at the helm for the Zips and his 19th campaign as a collegiate head coach, owning a 140-62-2 record. He was named the program's 27th all-time coach on Dec. 22, 2011, but is just the seventh person to hold the position since 1960. He is 3-1 all-time against UCF, including a 2-1 record at Samford and a 1-0 mark at Auburn.

The Series: Thursday marks the eighth meeting between these former Mid-American Conference foes. Akron owns a 5-2 advantage in the series, including a 3-0 mark at home. These two last met on the gridiron on Oct. 16, 2004, in Orlando, Fla. The Zips won that matchup 26-21. UA won the last meeting in Akron, a 38-24 victory at the Rubber Bowl on Oct. 18, 2003.

Akron-UCF All-Time Series Results
Akron leads: 5-2
at UA: 3-0
at UCF: 2-2
1984 (A); W, 26-21    
1986 (H); W, 20-17    
2000 (H); W, 35-24    
2011 (A); L, 17-57        
2002 (A); L, 17-28        
2003 (H); W, 38-24    
2004 (A); W, 26-21

Streaks, Storylines, Sidebars
• Akron embarks on its 112th all-time season when it plays host to UCF at InfoCision Stadium – Summa Field on Thursday at 7 p.m. ET. The contest will be carried by ESPN3.
• UCF is receiving votes in both the AP and USA Today Coaches preseason polls.
• Thursday marks the return of Akron head coach Terry Bowden to the Football Bowl Subdivision sideline. Bowden coached at Division-II North Alabama each of the last three seasons. From 1993-98, he was head coach at Auburn.
• Thursday's game marks the start of year four for the program playing at its on-campus stadium. The Zips are 5-13 at the venue in that time. Prior to 2009, UA competed at the Rubber Bowl, located approximately 10 miles off campus.
• Debuting under center for Akron will be Dalton Williams. Williams is a fifth-year senior transfer from Stephen F. Austin. He is backed up by redshirt freshman signal caller Kyle Pohl. UA is one of 13 FBS schools that has no quarterback starters returning in 2012 (Arizona State, Boise State, East Carolina, Hawai'i, LSU, Memphis, Michigan State, Northern Illinois, Oklahoma State, Southern Mississippi, Stanford and Texas A&M).

In the Beginning
• UA opens the season at home for the second time in three years, squaring off against Syracuse to begin the 2010 campaign (29-3 Syracuse win on Sept. 4). The Zips opened the 2011 campaign at Ohio State (42-0 OSU victory on Sept. 4).
• The Zips have dropped their season opener in each of the last four seasons (at Ohio State on Sept. 3, 2011; versus Syracuse on Sept. 4, 2010; at Penn State on Sept. 5, 2009; at Wisconsin on Aug. 30, 2008).
• In 2007, the Zips opened the season by playing host to Army at Cleveland Browns Stadium (22-14 UA win on Sept. 1, 2007) in the inaugural Patriot Bowl.
• Akron opened the season at home versus neighborhood rival and league foe Kent State on Aug. 28, 2003 (41-38 KSU win), and defeated MAC opponent Ohio 31-29 in the 2001 season opener at home.

News, Notes, Trends
• In 18 seasons as a head coach, Terry Bowden owns an 13-4-1 record in season openers. He started each of the last three seasons at North Alabama with a victory.
• Bowden is one of 59 coaches at Bowl Subdivision schools on the USA Today Board of Coaches, and will participate in this season's top-25 balloting.

Social Media Night
• The theme for the game is "Social Media Night" and a group of fan correspondents have been selected to engage social media channels from the stadium press level.
• Media and fans are asked to use the hashtag #ZipsGameday when tweeting about the event.
• The game also serves as the first stop on the Mid-American Conference's Social Media Road Tour, which provides a behind-the-scenes media experience for fans at one game involving a league team each week throughout the season.

On this Date in Akron Football
2006: The last time the Zips played on Aug. 30 came at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, Wisc., during the 2008 season. UA fell 38-17 to then No. 12-ranked Wisconsin.
2001: Akron opened the 2001 season with a 31-29 home win over Ohio at the Rubber Bowl. Zac Derr's 38-yard field goal as time expired lifted the Zips to victory in a game that featured 950 yards of total offense, 58 first downs and just two punts – one by each team.

Player Noteables – Offense
• The Zips return 19 letterwinners and five starters on the offensive side of the ball, including top-rusher from a season ago sophomore Jawon Chisholm (961 yards, 5 TDs) and top-receiver junior Keith Sconiers (639 yards, 5 TDs).
• Chisholm broke the program's freshman rushing record with 961 yards and five touchdowns last season. He finished the 2011 campagin with 84 yards receiving and added one passing touchdown in four passing attempts. He enters the season as an All-MAC candidate.
• Sconiers returns to lead one of the deepest positions on the squad. He led the Zips in catches (47), receiving yards (639) and receiving touchdowns (5) in 2011.
• The Zips will also have the services of junior Broderick Alexander (196 yards) and newcomers Conor Hundley, Hakeem Lawrence and Quentin Hines in the backfield.
• Joining Sconiers at wide receiver are senior Marquelo Suel (417 yards, 4 TDs), junior Jerrod Dillard (76 yards, 1 TD) and sophomore Tyler WIlliams.
• Taking the snap from center will be first-year starter Dalton Williams. Williams, a fifth-year senior transfer from Stephen F. Austin, completed his SFA career 72-of-110 for 724 yards and seven touchdowns as a backup. Redshirt freshman Kyle Pohl earned the No. 2 quarterback position.
• The offensive line will be anchored by senior Adam Bice, who started 10-of-12 games last season. Veterans Mitch Straight (senior) and Jarrod Pughsley (junior) will also start, as well as sophomore Travis Switzer and redshirt freshman Dylan Brubaugh.

Player Noteables – Defense
• The Akron defense will have 18 letterwinners and six defensive starters return in 2012, led by second-leading tackler senior LB Troy Gilmer.
• Gilmer battled injuries in 2011, missing three games, but posted 71 tackles to finish second on the squad. His 7.9 tackles per game average were 13th-best in the MAC and 87th nationally.
• Senior J.D. Griggs (28 tackles, 1.0 sack) and junior Nico Caponi (30 tackles, 1.5 sacks) anchor the defensive line. The two combined for 7.5 tackles for a loss, five fumble recoveries and one forced fumble in 2011.
• The Akron secondary returns three players that made multiple starts in 2011 in senior Josh Richmond (27 tackles, 1 INT), junior Anthony Holmes (35 tackles, 4 PBU) and sophomore Johnny Robinson (38 tackles, 1 INT).
• The defense will have three starting positions filled by key transfers, including junior Albert Presley (Dean College) on the line, senior Kurt Mangum (Howard) at middle linebacker and senior Avis Commack (Florida State) at cornerback.

Player Noteables – Special Teams
• Sophomore Tyler Williams is back as the Zips' kickoff returner following a record-breaking freshman campaign. He broke the single-season return mark with 39 in 2011. He finished second on the squad with 734 all-purpose yards.
• Redshirt freshmen Robert Stein (kicker) and Zach Paul (punter) will take over the Akron kicking game. Stein converted 15-of-19 field goals and 51-of-54 extra points in his high school career. Paul averaged 39.7 yards per punt in high school, and also made 13-of-16 field goals and 56-of-58 extra points in his prep career.

Zips Live Coaches Show
Every Thursday throughout the season from 7-8 p.m. ET Akron head coach Terry Bowden can be heard on the weekly radio program Zips Live. The show airs locally on 1350 AM (WARF) and originates from the Winking Lizard Tavern in nearby Fairlawn. Visit GoZips.com/broadcasts/index to listen online.

Zips Football with Terry Bowden
Weekly throughout the season, head coach Terry Bowden will review the previous week's game and preview the Zips' upcoming opponent on the 30-minute television show, Zips Football with Terry Bowden presented by Wentz Financial Group. The show will be carried by SportsTime Ohio at a to-be-announced date and time. Visit GoZips.com/broadcasts/index for a complete schedule of airtimes.