Whether it’s basketball, soccer, or the BCS, the NCAA is always finding a way to slight the MAC and other mid-major schools. Despite a 16-3-1 record and a proven track record as an elite soccer program, Akron did not receive the coveted top-16 seed in the NCAA tournament. A top-16 seed would have earned the Zips a bye in the 48 team field on their quest for a second national title. Everyone was surprised and/or disappointed to see another selection committee failure with Akron.
My biggest gripe with field? How does Akron not get seeded (again)? Easily a Top 10 team, but can't nab a Top 16 spot? Blame the RPI system
My biggest gripe with field? How does Akron not get seeded (again)? Easily a Top 10 team, but can't nab a Top 16 spot? Blame the RPI system— Ives Galarcep (@SoccerByIves) November 18, 2013
Damn. Someone on the committee hates Akron - unseeded and playing a red-hot Indiana side. Ouch.
Damn. Someone on the committee hates Akron - unseeded and playing a red-hot Indiana side. Ouch.— J.R. Eskilson (@JREskilson) November 18, 2013
We can only dwell on the selection process for so long before taking a look at the upcoming matchup. The Zips will host the defending champion Indiana Hoosiers this Thursday at 7 P.M. The Hoosiers struggled throughout the regular season finishing with a 8-11-2 before coming together to win the Big Ten tournament and earning a NCAA tournament bid. These two teams have a history in recent years. The Zips defeated Indiana 1-0 last year in South Bend and the Zips also hold a 2-1 victory over the Hoosiers in the 2010 NCAA quarterfinals.
This is the Zips’ first tournament in the Coach Jared Embrick era. Akron has not been as dominant as past years, but they are still a national title contender and are peaking at the right time. The Zips enter the NCAA tournament with a 9-0-1 record in their past ten games culminating in winning the MAC championship. While this is a game the Zips probably should not even have to play, they have had the Hoosiers’ number of late and are the hosts in front of one of the best home crowds in soccer.
Akron wins 2-1 with two goals from senior MAC player of the year Aodhan Quinn advancing to play Marquette on Sunday. The best and only way to combat the NCAA is to prove them wrong time and time again.