The Rams had an up-and-down week but one that ultimately ended on a high note, bouncing back from a tough road loss at George Mason with an important road win at George Washington.
VCU head coach Will Wade took time to address national media in today’s Atlantic 10 conference call, the entirety of which can be heard here: Will Wade Week 9 Teleconference.
The call was just over eight minutes but if you don’t have time to listen here are some highlights of what Wade had to say:
ON JONATHAN WILLIAMS INJURY – Williams scored a career-high 17 points in VCU’s win over George Washington but had to leave the game in crunch time after cutting his chester while diving into the stands on defense. No stitches were needed however and Wade said Williams has full range of motion.
ON MATCHUP PROBLEMS AT GW – “Cavanough is a nightmare matchup for us…We were very very worried about Cavanough.” Wade was worried about the matchup with 6’9 Wake Forest transfer Tyler Cavanough because the big has the versatility to post smaller defenders while stepping out against bigs. The junior big led GW with 19 points but thankfully fouled out before the end of regulation, racking up five fouls in 27 minutes of action.
ON DAVIDSON – “We’re best when we play inside out”. Wade wanted to establish bigs early against George Mason but said he couldn’t do so due to early foul trouble. Wade said that’s the key with any game and you can certainly expect to see that against an undersized Davidson unit that has struggled to defend the paint.
“We gave them some looks, they just missed a few,” Wade commented on defending the Wildcats’ explosive offense. “We just gotta be active, have active hands and really force them off their spots and force them to play further out and maybe at some places where they’re not as comfortable.”
ESPN – 10-Seed
CBS – First four out (second team out)
NBC – First four out (first team out)
VCU NCAA Resume
Versus RPI top-100: 5-6 Versus RPI top-50: 2-2
Versus RPI top-25: 0-1 Road/neutral record versus top-100: 4-4
Best wins: at Saint Joseph’s (26), v St. Bonaventure (35)
Bad losses: at UMass (172), at George Mason (191)
Teams that can still help VCU: Buffalo (RPI 102) and Rhode Island (RPI 108).
The Rams are about as on-the-bubble as it gets but have two big opportunities this week against Davidson (67 RPI) and Dayton (25 RPI). Wins against both would work wonders for the RPI but would also give VCU the A-10 regular season title, something that might be hard for the selection committee to ignore. The Rams can also get a little extra credit if both Buffalo and Rhode Island can find their way into the top-100 (not likely but wouldn’t hurt).
RAMS v SPIDERS: ROUND 3?
VCU is in poll position in the A-10 regular season standings and with either a strong week or a little help could secure their first A-10 regular season crown and a No.1 seed for Brooklyn. If they do, watch out for a potential VCU versus Richmond matchup in the Rams’ first game as what would be the 1 v 8/9 winner game. The Spiders currently sit at eighth place in the conference and are virtually a lock to play in the 8 v 9 game. In the meantime Ram fans may find themselves doing some casual rooting for their rival this Tuesday night as the Spiders host the Dayton Flyers. A Flyers loss combined with a VCU win over Davidson would put the Rams a full two games against of Archie Miller’s squad. Throw in a St. Bonaventure win over Saint Joseph’s and the Rams could actually win the A-10 regular season title before they even lace em up on Saturday.