Akron player suspended following arrest
by Scott Gleeson, USA TODAY Sports
Akron’s hopes for an at-large bid in the NCAA tournament took a huge hit with its loss to Buffalo last week that snapped an NCAA-leading 19-game winning streak.
Now the Zips could be at serious risk of missing out on an automatic bid to the Big Dance, as the team was dealt more adversity on Thursday night.
The Akron Beacon Journal reported that starting point guard Alex Abreu was arrested on drug charges and has been suspended indefinitely.
It’s a devastating blow for a Zips squad with high postseason aspirations, having lost in the championship game of the Mid-American Conference Tournament last season to eventual Sweet Sixteen finisher Ohio. With one game left on the conference slate — a game against Kent State on Friday, Akron has already claimed the regular-season MAC title and No. 1 seed in the MAC Tournament, which starts Wednesday in Cleveland.
Akron coach Keith Dambrot told USA TODAY Sports recently that Abreu, was “one of the most important pieces” to his team’s success. A junior from Puerto Rico, Abreu is averaging 10.3 points and six assists a game this season.
The university released a three-sentence statement Thursday evening, announcing the suspension and directing all inquiries to the Akron Police Department.