Seniors taken center court

Sean Joseph

With only three games left before their last Mid-American Conference Tournament, the seniors of the Kent State men’s basketball team still think their most memorable games are yet to come.

Saturday’s game against Miami (16-11, 12-3 MAC) at 2 p.m., which will be televised on Fox Sports Network Ohio, is Kent State’s chance to separate themselves from Akron and Miami, who are both one game behind the Flashes (20-7, 13-2 MAC) in the conference standings.

This is the final stretch, and the second to last home game, for this group of seniors who will be missed. Senior Nate Gerwig is the only player who has won a MAC Championship. DeAndre Haynes holds the all-time school record for assists and steals. Jay Youngblood was named the National Junior College Player of the Year in 2004 before coming to Kent State, and has more 20-point games this season than anybody since Antonio Gates. Senior Kevin Warzynski sat out his junior year after transferring from Charleston Southern and has 1,239 career points.

About the team

What is the best time you’ve had with your teammates off the court?

Warzynski: Playing video games with Nate at 4 a.m. the year we sat out. We played any kind of sports game, especially baseball.

What are some superstitions or rituals you have before games?

Warzynski: I bowl two days before every game. I’ve averaged 185 in the past six weeks with a high of 236.

I put the left everything on first. Left pant leg, left sock, shoe, everything.

What aspect of your careers would have surprised you the most if you learned about it your freshman year?

Warzynski: Transferring from Charleston Southern

Haynes: Breaking so many records

Gerwig: Going to the Elite Eight

Youngblood: Winning a national championship in junior college

About Kent State

The seniors’ favorite local hangouts

Warzynski: AMF Twin Star Lanes, Taco Tontos

Gerwig: Chapel Hill Mall

Youngblood: Applebee’s

If you could change Kent State’s mascot to anything, what would it be?

Gerwig: Jay Youngblood’s face

Youngblood: Bulldogs

Haynes: Superfan

About college

What will you miss most about college?

Youngblood: My teammates. If anyone plays pro it’s more for themselves than for the team. Here we play for each other.

Gerwig: Everything is free for us right now.

Why will you be glad to be out of college?

Warzynski: College is a phase of your life you’re glad to be a part of at the time, but five years is enough and at some point you have to move on to bigger and exciting things, whatever they may be.

If you could replay one game, what would it be?

All seniors: last year’s loss to Ohio in the MAC Tournament.

How have you changed in college?

Warzynski: I’ve matured and learned how to take care of myself. I learned how to cook real well. Some people still let their mommies take care of them, but college is where you become who you are.

Contact men’s basketball reporter Sean Joseph at [email protected].