Former Florida Tech Panther basketball player Runako Ziegler signs pro contract with UCD Marian in Ireland

Ziegler played 59 games during his 3-year Florida Tech career

Former men’s basketball player and recent Florida Tech graduate, Runako Ziegler will begin his professional career after signing a contract with UCD Marian. (picture Florida Tech)

BREVARD COUNTY • MELBOURNE, FL – Former men’s basketball player and recent Florida Tech graduate, Runako Ziegler will begin his professional career after signing a contract with UCD Marian.

UCD Marian Basketball Club is Ireland’s oldest club and has served to promote the sport in South Dublin since 1968.

UCD Marian competes in the Super League, Ireland’s top division for senior men.

“I am thrilled to start my professional basketball career in Dublin, Ireland,” said Ziegler.

“I want to thank Coach Mims for helping me get to this point. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity and I’m grateful to be living my dream!”

Ziegler, who graduated from Florida Tech with a degree in sports management last May, was a member of the men’s basketball team for three years after transferring from School Craft College.

“I’m so excited for Nako to be given this opportunity to continue playing basketball as a professional and to experience another country and a new culture in the process,” Florida Tech head coach Billy Mims said. “Dublin is an exciting city steeped in history with lots to see and do.

“UCD Marian is a historic Super League club with a rich tradition of success. My friendships at their club go back many years, and it’s an honor to have one of our Florida Tech alumni playing now. for them.

“I know Nako will be surrounded by good people there and be a great fit for his club on the pitch and in the local community. UCD Marian fans will love his speed, explosive style of play and defensive tenacity.

Ziegler played in 59 games during his three-year Florida Tech career, including 44 starts.

He finished with career averages of 12.5 points, 3.6 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game while shooting 47.3% from the field, 26.7% from beyond the arc and 70.4% from the free throw line.

His best season as a Panther came in 2021-22 when he started all 25 games and averaged 14 points, 4.7 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.4 steals per game.

That season, Ziegler recorded double digit numbers in 19 games, including six games with at least 21 points. He also recorded a triple-double with 21 points, 10 rebounds and 12 assists against Notre Dame College on December 19, 2021.

UCD Marian is yet to release its 2022-22 fixture schedule, but UCD Marian club manager Conor Meany is delighted that Ziegler is starting his professional career with the team.

“We are really delighted to welcome Nako to Dublin to play for us at UCD Marian,” said Meany.

“We were looking to find a guard who could be a leader on both sides of the court and someone with a big personality who could engage the young players in our community.

“Nako has a skill set that will work well in Europe and having known Coach Mims for many years we are confident we are getting a high character player. Florida Tech has had a number of graduates in recent years to have a positive impact in Europe, and we hope Nako will be the next in a long line of Tech graduates to do so.

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