1. #1
    MaddyMax
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    Akron/Houston Motivation factor...

    Which team is more motivated here?
    Akron clinched their conference top seed long time ago and was waiting for the conference tourny to go to the big dance but they lost in the conference finals. Big blow to their players who were all planning big for the big dance way ahead of every team since they clinched conference first seed long time ago. Will the team show up or be heart broken and don't give a fuk?

    What about houston?

    Both teams can drain threes at a good clip. Houston defense is better. Size is also better for Houston. But 8 points is a lot to lay if they don't come with motivation......

    Perhaps the over?

    What do you guys have to say about this game?

  2. #2
    funnyb25
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    This is a great question. This is the reason I did not bet Akron. Not sure how motivated they are, and even the seeding is a bit strange to see Akron as a 7 getting that many points. I stayed away on this one but if Akron is motivated they should cover that number IMO
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  3. #3
    MaddyMax
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    Going to pass this game but here is a good article...

    The energy in Rhodes Arena was noticeably different Monday as the University of Akron men’s basketball team went through its paces ahead of Wednesday night’s National Invitation Tournament game against the University of Houston.
    A lightened regimen — free-throw shooting, individual coaching — is partly to blame for zapping that vibrancy.
    “It’s a simple thing,” UA coach Keith Dambrot sad. “You’re not going to do that much preparation because you just played three games in three days.”
    As the Zips prepared to head to Texas for a 7:30 p.m. game on ESPN2, there’s little doubt that Kent State receives part of the credit as well. The Golden Flashes are preparing for the NCAA Tournament bid the Zips had hoped for before KSU defeated UA 70-65 on Saturday in the final of Mid-American Conference Tournament in Cleveland.
    The NIT doesn’t offer the opportunity and prestige of the NCAA Tournament, and for the second consecutive year, the Zips have had to settle for the second option in the world of college basketball tournaments.
    Dambrot acknowledged getting up to play could be a challenge.
    “It’s more emotional preparation than physical preparation at this point,” Dambrot said. “Do we have enough in our tank emotionally coming off two disappointments two years in a row to play a good game in the NIT? That’s probably the toughest challenge I’m going to face as a coach, trying to motivate my guys.”
    The NIT selection committee, either by design or by sheer luck, proved to be wily in choosing UA’s opponent. Given the fact that it pitted UA against Ohio State last year, there is reason to suspect it’s the former rather than the latter.
    In sending a UA team that has three key players from the Houston area to play the Cougars, the committee created at least one compelling storyline. Guard Antino Jackson and forwards Daniel Utomi and Emmanuel Olojakpoke have all contributed to the Zips’ success this season.
    Heading home provides the desired effect of providing some semblance of motivation for these three players.
    Utomi and Olojakpoke both said that they’ve allowed the loss in the MAC Tournament championship game to roll off their backs.
    “Of course, happy because you get to play in front of your family and friends and you’re going back to your hometown,” Utomi said after Monday’s light workout.
    Utomi offered a pragmatic take on the subject: “I’m just trying to get ready to play Houston in front of my family and try to win the NIT.”
    As of Monday, Jackson was still processing the loss, alternating emotions. He thought he was over it after hearing about playing the Cougars, but then practice hit Monday morning.
    “Coming in this morning, I started slow, you know, it’s kind of emotional, wins and losses,” he said. “This is the second year in the row this has happened to me, so I’m taking it pretty rough. Before I get on this plane [Monday], I’m going to forget about it.”
    Given the high school resumes of Jackson, Utomi and Olojakpoke, it’s a wonder they made it out of Texas. Jackson averaged 19.2 points, 4.7 assists per game. Utomi tossed in 27 points and grabbed 14 rebounds per game in his senior year and Olojakpoke averaged 14.2 points and 6.2 rebounds as a senior and was his district’s defensive player of the year.
    Houston didn’t recruit them. There are conflicting emotions when asked whether that provides them with any added incentive.
    “I just want to go in there and play well,” Jackson said. “It really is a statement game, but it’s not. I’ve got a chip on my shoulder for sure because that’s my backyard school and they didn’t recruit me, but we’re in a good program and it’s going to be really good game.”
    For the three players, Houston bragging rights are on the line.
    “The biggest reason I’m happy is because [we] have a lot of buddies on the team … and they talk a lot of trash, so it would be good to get a win in Houston,” Utomi said.
    As for the rest of the Zips, anyone who remembers last year’s game against the Buckeyes knows the competitive juices eventually flowed.
    “I believe in my guys, so I think we’ll play,” Dambrot said, “but it’s not easy, emotionally, on them.”

  4. #4
    Machine Choice
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    This is why I don't bet on the small tournaments unless both teams are glad to be there.

  5. #5
    PorkChop
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    Akron has 4 starters from Houston, TX.

  6. #6
    Waterstpub87
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    Trying to assess the motivation of 18 year olds is a pointless task. Even so, how do you quantify that? Better to consider the game only from fundamentals and go from there.

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