In just his second year, VCU head coach Mike Rhoades has been named Coach of the Year by the Atlantic 10. Rhoades has guided the Rams to finish the regular season at 1st in the Atlantic 10, the first such accomplishment for VCU since joining the Atlantic 10 conference in 2012. Neither of the former VCU coaches (Shaka Smart, Will Wade) were able to achieve such success.
The Rams finished the regular season at 25-6, losing only 2 games in the Atlantic 10. Key out-of-conference wins against the Texas Longhorns and Temple Owls have kept VCU in the discussion for an at-large bid for the NCAA tournament, while also gaining enough votes in the AP poll to essential rank #27 heading into the Atlantic 10 conference tournament.
In addition to Mike Rhoades achieving Coach of the Year, VCU junior guard Marcus Evans was selected to Atlantic 10 All-Conference 1st team. Evans is averaging 14.1 points per game, 3.3 assists per game, and is logging 27.4 minutes per game. His recovery from a 2nd achilles tear over the summer was miraculous, a recovery which allowed him to play during the majority of the season.
VCU junior guard De’Riante Jenkins was the only other Ram picking up Atlantic 10 accolade, with his selection to All-Conference 3rd team.
VCU did not have any players in the All-Conference Defensive selections. The Rams have consistently had one of the best defenses in the country this season, so the lack of VCU players in the all-conference defensive selection was surprising. There is no doubt that the Rams will enter the Atlantic 10 tournament with a chip on their shoulder, looking to showcase the power of their defense.