The Akron Zips offseason began on Saturday afternoon after finishing 1-11 (1-7 MAC) in the 2021 campaign, but they will be moving onto the new coaching administration without quarterback Zach Gibson, who announced his intent to transfer on Twitter Monday afternoon.
Gibson was part of Tom Arth’s first class of recruits in 2019, and saw action in four games in his true freshman season— the maximum number of games he could play to keep his redshirt status.
He would be pressed into service in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season after expected starter Kato Nelson opted to recover from offseason injuries, starting all six games and finishing 76-of-132 for 784 yards, four touchdowns and five interceptions through the air, leading Akron to a 1-5 record.
Gibson would find himself third on the quarterback depth chart going into the 2021 season, however, starting only when Kato Nelson or DJ Irons were unavailable. Over seven game appearances, Gibson saw vast improvement from his 2020 numbers, especially in pass accuracy and decision-making, finishing 109-of-157 for 1,262 yards, 10 touchdowns and no interceptions.
With Tom Arth’s mid-season firing, it is perhaps not a major surprise Gibson will be looking for a change of scenery, as a position to be the starter with a new football coach isn’t certain. Gibson, having spent three years as a freshman due to the COVID season, will be a sophomore wherever he transfers, granting three years of eligibility at his next stop.