Athletics hosts second-annual Jock Jams

James A. Rhodes Arena played host to the second-annual Jock Jams Monday night, as each of UA’s 19 athletic programs took the stage for a five-minute performance.


James A. Rhodes Arena played host to the second-annual Jock Jams Monday night, as each of UA’s 19 athletic programs took the stage for a five-minute performance.

The competition brought a variety of acts from track and field hurdler J.J. Budzyn and his poetic recital of Blue & Gold to the Haka performed by Phil Tonga, a defensive end for the Zips’ football team.

It is all about creativity and energy, said UA Athletic Director and featured judge Tom Wistrcill. It showcases the wonderful creative talents of our student athletes.

Wistrcill and his fellow judges from Akron’s Athletics Administration saw an array of creativity on the night, but the softball team stole the show and the title with their interpretation of numerous classic movies.

Softball Dead Coach Julie Jones got in the mix, as scenes from Forrest Gump, Lion King, Grease and Titanic, among others, were seen in the five-minute set.

Swimming and diving finished just behind the softball team, as they replaced words in popular music with Zip-themed lyrics.

Women’s basketball, decked out with Afros and sequined gloves, lip-synched a Michael Jackson medley on their way to third place.

You can tell the ones who put it together in the last 24 hours versus the ones who have been practicing, said Wistrcill.

Dean Carro, Meagan Gossens, Anne Jorgensen and Rob Heuer to round out the judging committee joined the Akron Athletic Director. Lauren Schuck hosted the event.

Creativity, choreography, originality, time management, crowd involvement, as well as a bonus for participating coaches were all factored into the final results.

The night of entertainment did not go without cause, as 100 percent of the benefits went to Akron Inner City Soccer.

The Student Athlete Advisor Committee looked at a number of options and they found a group that really gets no funding, said Wistrcill. It’s a way to promote youth soccer in a community that hasn’t been exposed to soccer before.

Last year, Jock Jams raised over $700 for Kids in Distressed Situations.