University of Akron Classes Canceled Thursday PM Because of Street Closures & Crowd

The University is canceling all classes that start at noon or later on Thursday, June 23, because of scheduled street closures adjacent to campus and the anticipated large crowd expected to converge on downtown Akron tomorrow for the City of Akron celebration of LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers NBA Championship

The normal class schedule will resume on Friday, June 24.

Normal summer work hours for University employees will remain in effect.


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2016 Met Gala: Fashion and Technology

CNN Style                                                                                                              photo from CNN Style

The 2016 Met Gala explored fashion in the age of technology where fashion made by hand (manus) and made by technology (machine) were both showcased.

So, the celebrities in attendance were asked to dress according to the theme. Which was pretty interesting. Silver, sparkles, geometric and futuristic ensembles were showcased.

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2016 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Cornerbacks

Khalil Smith

  1. Jalen Ramsey
    • School: Florida State
    • Class: Junior
    • Height/Weight: 6’1” / 209lbs
  • Strengths:
    • Ramsey is simply a flatout “football player”. He made his mark at Florida State as the first true freshman to start since Deion Sanders, a 3-year starter, and a 1st team All-American selection in 2015.
    • Ramsey separates himself from other DB prospects with his versatility, playing all over the field at cornerback, safety, and even nickelback. Ramsey plays with impressive instincts, anticipating passes well before the ball leaves the quarterback’s hands. With Ramsey, you don’t have to worry about his willingness to help in run support. He’s a defensive back with a linebacker’s’ mentality, a ferocious head-hunter who aggressively plays up at the line of scrimmage.
  • Weaknesses:
    • The most popular statistic amongst defensive backs is interceptions, and Ramsey didn’t have many during his career at Florida State. Many scouts have questioned his ball-skills, and more specifically, his hands. Ramsey frequently dropped interceptions, and didn’t record a single interception during his junior season. There will be a learning curve for Ramsey when he first enters the NFL. Scouts expect him to struggle in man-coverage early on, but don’t expect these struggle to last forever, as Ramsey has the all the physical and intangible skills to overcome his deficiencies in man-coverage.
  • Comparison:
    • Best-case Scenario: Ronnie Lott / Tyrann Mathieu
    • Worst-case Scenario: Brandon Browner
  • Draft Prediction:
    • A few weeks ago, Ramsey was in consideration for the #1 overall pick in the draft. Now, after a couple draft-day trades (Rams, Eagles), look for the San Diego Chargers to take Ramsey at the #3 spot. Although Ramsey could fall as low as #6 to the Baltimore, Ravens fans shouldn’t get too excited, as Ramsey is far too talented to slip that far down.

2. Vernon Hargreaves III

    • School: Florida
    • Class: Junior
    • Height/Weight: 5’10” / 204 lbs
  • Strengths:
    • Hargreaves was the top cornerback prospect entering the 2015 college football season. While Florida State’s Jalen Ramsey took over that title, Hargreaves still remains the top “cover-corner” in this draft, period. Hargreaves is known as a “quick-twitch” athlete. He explodes out his breaks and his footwork is already at an NFL-level. His elite ball skills are elite, his recovery speed is remarkable, and unlike Ramsey, Hargreaves has the statistics to prove it (10 career INT’s, 38 career passes defensed).
  • Weakness:
    • Height and size (which are not entirely his fault). The average NFL cornerback size has increased over recent years, and so have the receivers’, causing concern for Hargreaves who only stands 5’10”. Look, he’s not getting any taller, but he must improve upon his size to stand a chance against the Dez Bryant’s and A.J. Green’s of the NFL.
    • Although he’s known for his “quick-twitch” athleticism and instincts, Hargreaves had his eyes caught in the backfield often during his time at Florida. If he’s not careful, he’ll get lured into double-moves all day long.
  • Comparisons:
    • Best-case Scenario: Joe Haden
    • Worst-case Scenario: Dee Milliner
  • Draft Prediction:
    • Many scouts believe Hargreaves will land back in his hometown of Tampa, Florida with the Buccaneers at #9, who are in desperate need of secondary help. If Hargreaves was a couple inches taller, he would be considered a top-5 pick.

3. Eli Apple

    • School: Ohio State
    • Class: Sophomore (RS)
    • Height/Weight: 6’1” / 199 lbs
  • Strengths:
    • Eli Apple solidified himself as a boarder-line 1st round pick last season at Ohio State while earning Second Team All-Big Ten Honors. Apple has all all the physical tools NFL teams look for in a cornerback: size, length, speed, quickness, etc. He’s a fluid athlete who moves his feet and hips well, critical for tracking receivers downfield. Apple is extremely competitive in jump-ball situations, aggressively breaking up passes and fights for possession of the ball.
  • Weakness:
    • Although Apple possesses the physical traits to be a solid shutdown corner in the NFL, he needs to improve upon his discipline in pass defense. Too often was Apple caught up in being physical with receivers to where he picked up countless penalties. If his disincline fails to improve, Apple will begin to get exposed by offensive coordinators, and perhaps referees too.
  • Comparisons:
    • Best-case Scenario: Antonio Cromartie
    • Worst-care Scenario: Andre Woolfolk
  • Draft Prediction:
    • Apple is a borderline 1st round pick. The Pittsburgh Steelers, who’s secondary proved to be a liability, have their eye on Apple at #25. If he slips past the 1st round, he immediately becomes second-day steal for whoever lands the Ohio State product.

4. Artie Burns

    • School: Miami (FL)
    • Class: Junior
    • Height/Weight: 6’0” / 193 lbs
  • Strengths:
    • A two-sport star athlete at Miami (FL) in football and track, there is no questioning Artie Burns’ speed in this draft. He effectively uses his speed in man-coverage, especially when tracking down deep balls. He also possesses solid quickness, with the ability to turn his hips and explode out his break. Burns has a natural eye for the football, leading the ACC with six interceptions this past season with the Hurricanes.
  • Weakness:
    • Still a work in progress with his mechanics. Burns’ often relies heavily on his natural speed, which may work in college, but not at in the NFL. Often exposed to elite route-running wideouts. Needs to attack blockers rather than waiting for the ball-carrier to come, will get exposed in the running game early in his career.
  • Comparisons:
    • Best-case Scenario: Darius Slay
    • Worst-case Scenario: Alphonso Smith
  • Draft Prediction:
    • Burns can go as high as the second round and as low as the fourth round. He should be off the board by the middle of the third round at the latest.                                                             

5. William Jackson III

    • School: Houston
    • Class: Senior
    • Height / Weight: 6’0” / 189 lbs
  • Strengths:
    • William Jackson III enters the draft with good size at the cornerback position. He is at his best when the ball in the air. Jackson III has receiver-like ball-skills, anticipating the ball at its highest-point, and he’s not afraid to get physical with receivers when fighting for jump-balls.
  • Weakness:
    • Although Jackson III is a decent athlete with good size, some question his quickness when covering shorter routes. This may become a problem when he faces shorter, quicker receivers who run tight and crisp routes (ex. Antonio Brown)
    • Some scouts also question the competition Jackson III faced in college. He started at a junior college, then transferred to Houston, who plays in the mediocre AAC.
  • Draft Prediction:
    • Although Jackson III is projected as a second round pick, don’t be surprised if the Kansas City Chiefs, who needs a solid cornerback to play opposite of Marcus Peters, take Jackson III late in the first round at #28.

2016 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Safeties

Safety: David Rodriguez

1. Vonn Bell – The Ohio State State senior Vonn Bell has had an elevated career as a Buckeye. Bell led the Big Ten with six interceptions as a sophomore and finished with just two his junior season. His speed is something NFL teams should take note of. Bell switched to free safety from cornerback where he was involved in more tackles, ninety two to be exact his sophomore year and with just sixty five his junior year. Bell has blown a few coverages at free safety but it’s nothing you can’t fix.

Vonn Bell is one of the better free safeties coming out of the top five projected players for his position for the draft. His team’s success throughout the years he played shows that he can defend the best. He matched up with Amari Cooper in the college football playoff during the 2014 – 2015 season. Vonn Bell will hopefully be one of the later picks in the first round or early second.

2. Karl Joseph – The most fearful defender in the college backfield before suffering a knee injury after just four games into the season. After a disappointing season he seeks to go early in the second round with his aggressive play style and gritty tackle tactics. Joseph, with his 4.57 forty yard dash speed while staying low and engaging contact, he demolishes the opposing offenders.

His aggressive play style could be a downfall for the Mountaineer senior. It has been said that Joseph lacks in open field tackling which could be a problem. No team wants a guy that can’t handle his own during one on one situations, and that could be crucial. Joseph’s landing in the draft will be based on how quickly he can recover from his knee injury.

3. KelVarae Russell – The questionable KelVarae Russell of the Fighting Irish has on and off battles with his football career through college. Being suspend the season of 2014 for academic dishonesty, Russell managed to return in 2015 and play a good season until the final two games where he broke his right leg. The Irish defensive back Russell has raw talent, his unreal athleticism and excellent hand eye coordination helps him squeeze on the ball mid air. Some cons with his play style are keying in on the quarterback too long and that’s where he loses the receiver. If Russell can to recover from his injury safely he can become something special in the NFL but he’ll have to stay focused and healthy. KelVarae Russell is projected to go third or fourth round in this years draft.

4. Keanu Neal – The six foot junior weighing in at two hundred pounds solid, Keanu Neal, hopes to go in the first round as stated by scouts. The Florida Gator whose physical defense has stood out at his time as a Gator. Neal could be the new addition and perfect fit to the Arizona Cardinals five star defensive backfield. Quick to the ball and with the ability of breaking up passes instantly, Neal has the authority to make a statement in the NFL. Don’t sleep on this guy.

5. Justin Simmons – Justin Simmons of Boston College didn’t miss a beat while playing center field for Boston College. Simmons played an outstanding fifty games while having his time spent on the field. Leading his team in tackles his final year with seventy-six, Simmons’ lengthy play style has made him someone to look out for. He has the ability to break up passes and jump routes. His toughness and ability to make open field tackles with no hesitation is a plus.

There aren’t many weaknesses of Simmons but his size could get to him with his lengthy-ness   slowing him down during coverages in the open field.

Kerry Washington signs ABC contract under Simpson Street Productions

Kerry Washington, aka Olivia Pope, is grabbing a seat at the big table in ABC Studios with her own production company: Simpson Street

In a recent statement Kerry Washington says, “I believe strongly in the importance of having a seat at the table, which makes starting this production company thrilling for me. It’s an honor to be at a point in my career when I can help generate projects that that are exciting, necessary, and truly reflect the world around us. I’m grateful to be on this journey with ABC, a network that remains unparalleled in its commitment to inclusive storytelling.”

#BlackGirlMagic at it’s finest!

Simpson Street just signed a two-year contract with ABC Studios. First project is said to be an Anita Hill documentary starring Kerry Washington herself!

 

Read more at: Blavity.com