Zips looking towards new beginnings


The Akron Zips football team takes to the field during a 2015 game at InfoCision Stadium. (Buchtelite file photo)

By Forrest Dukes, Sports Editor

Exciting news is coming from the UA Athletic Department including information on new hires and an invitation from the head coach himself.

The Zips have hired Darrell Funk as an assistant coach to beef up the offensive line as the offensive line coach as well as to make improvements to the running game as the offensive run game coordinator.

Funk has worked as an assistant since the 1990 season, started his career as a special teams coach and has climbed the ranks to an offensive line coach. Funk has also worked at the highest level with the St. Louis Rams for five years and the majority of his tenure was as an offensive line coach. With stops at colleges like Colorado State, Rhode Island, San Diego State, Michigan and MAC rivals Northern Illinois and Ball State. During his career Funk has aided the Aztecs to the 16th best offense in NCAA and an offensive line that finished sixth nationally with fewest sacks  allowed in 2010. At Michigan, Funks’ line produced three 1,000 yard rushers and a semifinalist for the Rotary-Lombardi award as well as three Big Ten Rimington-Pace Offensive Linemen of the Year.

“He is one of the top offensive line coaches in the country and will add a wealth of experience to our staff. Just as importantly, Darrell is a man of high character, and he will fit in nicely with the family atmosphere that we believe in here at Akron,” Head Coach Terry Bowden said to media.

The other big news is a look into signing day, where Bowden has invited students, fans, and faculty to attend and experience the National Signing Day in the Union. National Signing Day will take place on Wednesday, Feb. 4 at the Starbucks stage. During this event participants will be able to meet mentors, ask questions during the press conference, win prizes, learn about the new Zips, and watch their highlight video.