Akron Does College Soccer Right, On and Off the Field

By Noah Davis Comment

Caleb Porter is creating a college soccer dynasty at Akron. His Zips have contested the last two College Cups – winning the 2010 edition – and have sent 11 players to Major League Soccer in the past two years. The ’10 squad might go down as the best in the history of the game.

But Porter’s team has some even more impressive statistics off the field.

“In 2009-10 they posted a team GPA of 3.33, eighth best in the country, and the semester the Zips won the 2010 College Cup they posted a 3.51 team GPA,” Jeremiah Oshan writes on Sports Nation. “In Porter’s five years at Akron, seven Zips have been named Academic All-America and 16 have been named Academic All-Conference.”

And the students aren’t getting by with easy majors, either. Kofi Sarkodie, the No. 7 pick in the 2011 MLS SuperDraft, was ESPN’s Academic All-American of the Year and earned a 3.96 GPA while majoring in biology. Perry Kitchen, the No. 3 pick, led the seven drafted players with a 3.945 GPA in his only year in college. Ben Zemanski, who was drafted last year, came away with a degree in mechanical engineering.

As we watch the chaos of National Signing Day, it’s refreshing to see some college sports programs are still about sports and school.