The University of Akron men's soccer team has been one of the most productive programs at the university since its inaugural season in 1955. No other program has been ranked among the nation's best at the university through its history. Yes, there have been spurts of greatness at the university among over the years:
John Heisman led the Zip's football team to a 12-6 victory over Ohio State in 1896.
Bob Huggins led the Zip's basketball program to several 20 game win seasons
The men's basketball team played in the NCAA tournament and ran into Earl "the Pearl" Monroe as they lost to Winston Salem.
The football team made a played in the Grantland Rice Bowl in 1968 only to be picked apart by a little known quarterback (at that time) by the name of Terry Bradshaw. Of course four super bowl rings later and an illustrious career with the Pittsburg Steelers, everyone knows who Terry Bradshaw is today.
Other sports have had some great accomplishments also. A fraternity brother of mine was part of the University's bowling team that won the national championship in 1968 and the women's program has posted numerous starling seasons over the years.
The men's soccer team, however has been consistently regarded as one of the nation's best programs and has made 23 NCAA Tournament appearance including seven of the last eight seasons.
As the Head Soccer Coach at Cuyahoga Falls High School in the 70s and 80s I was proud to have one of my players (David Wells) recruited and selected to play for The University of Akron. I watched my young student start every game for The University of Akron from 1986 - 1990 and compete in the National Championship game in Tacoma, Washington during his freshman year.
The University of Akron is considered to be an elite program on the national level and have been near the top of the national rankings for several years. They were the first Mid-American conference team in any sport to achieve a No. 1 national ranking in 2005. They are currently ranked No. 1 nationally and are 19-0 to date. Their 19 wins represents the fifth longest winning streak during a single season in NCAA history as well as a school record for victories.
Those of us who have followed Akron soccer closely over the years are watching intently and hoping that the men's soccer team will bring home a national championship this year. As the top ranked soccer team in the country, The University of Akron has long made its school and followers proud.
Best wishes to coach Caleb Parker and the men's soccer team as they pursue a national championship. Go Zips!