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Analyzing the Atlantic 10's Non-Conference Schedules For 2016-17

After a couple of relatively lean years in terms of NCAA bids, 2017's slates offer hope for the A 10's contenders.

Over the past five seasons, the Atlantic 10 has earned 16 total at-large bids, but only two apiece in 2015 and 2016. For this season, several of the league's members have scheduled like they want to get back to 2014's record haul of five at-large places.

For a full explanation of this series' methodology and what these rankings mean (and why certain games appear twice with strikethroughs), check out the intro piece.

Update 10/05/2016: Due to the late addition of Albany to SMU's schedule, I've adjusted the numbers from those originally published on October 3rd.

Update 10/06/2016: I mistakenly counted Virginia's game with UNCG as a home game, when it's an away game. Therefore, I've had to adjust the Cavaliers' scores and overall rankings and means accordingly.

Update 10/07/16: I didn't include Villanova's January home game with Virginia in the original Big East post, so the rankings and averages have been updated yet again.

Update 10/10/16: While finishing the Mountain West post, I noticed that San Diego State added a home game against Savannah State since I first started it. Therefore, scores and rankings have been updated as a result.

Update 10/11/16: While reviewing the Pac-12's schedules again for that post, I noticed that Oregon added not one but two games since I started—one against (drumroll) Savannah State (!) and another against non-D1 Western Washington. That really shook up the standings and averages, so these have again been updated.

Mean Schedule Ranking

Team Opponent Score Distance From Average
(1.406)
At-Large Pool Rank
(out of 135)
A 10 Rank
(out of 14)
Davidson 1.765 +0.359 9 1
Saint Joseph's 1.753 +0.347 11 2
Rhode Island 1.627 +0.221 21 3
La Salle 1.499 +0.093 47 4
VCU 1.486 +0.080 51 5
George Washington 1.448 +0.042 55 6
Dayton 1.402 -0.004 68 7
St. Bonaventure 1.326 -0.081 82 8
George Mason 1.298 -0.109 87 9
Massachusetts 1.288 -0.118 92 10
Richmond 1.239 -0.167 101 11
Saint Louis 1.201 -0.205 106 12
Fordham 1.155 -0.251 116 13
Duquesne 1.145 -0.261 117 14
Atlantic 10 Average 1.402 0.000 3 of 9*

* American, A 10, ACC, Big 12, Big East, Big Ten, MW, Pac-12, SEC

High-quality games away from home for the Wildcats (UNC and Kansas in Kansas City), the Hawks (Villanova, Princeton, and Illinois State), and Rams (Providence, Valparaiso) boost their respective schedules before factoring in their exempt tournaments—a department where all three will receive boosts in the next two rankings, on paper anyway. With Dayton's schedule barely worse than the at-large pool average, half of the A 10's members rank among the top half of the 135 teams covered in this series.

Best-Case (Maximum) Schedule Ranking

Team Opponent Score

Distance From Average
(1.445)

At-Large Pool Rank
(out of 135)
A 10 Rank
(out of 14)
Davidson 1.864 +0.419 5 1
Saint Joseph's 1.833 +0.388 7 2
Rhode Island 1.664 +0.219 22 3
VCU 1.551 +0.107 46 4
George Washington 1.511 +0.067 52 5
Dayton 1.501 +0.057 56 6
La Salle 1.499 +0.054 57 7
George Mason 1.351 -0.094 82 8
St. Bonaventure 1.326 -0.119 90 9
Massachusetts 1.288 -0.156 96 10
Richmond 1.275 -0.170 100 11
Saint Louis 1.203 -0.242 111 12
Fordham 1.155 -0.290 121 13
Duquesne 1.145 -0.300 124 14
Atlantic 10 Average 1.440 0.000 3 of 9*

* American, A 10, ACC, Big 12, Big East, Big Ten, MW, Pac-12, SEC

That total remains steady when each team's best-possible exempt tournament performance is factored in. Davidson is the biggest winner on that front, as an optimal Puerto Rico Tip-Off performance would see the Wildcats take on both Xavier and Oklahoma with a quarterfinal win over Clemson. Likewise, Rhode Island would ideally meet Duke with a win over Cincinnati in the Hall of Fame Tip-Off. On the other hand, Saint Joe's projected score here is a bit optimistic, mostly because the Paradise Jam features a whole lot of potential bubble teams.

Note that five of the A 10's 14 members are not involved in bracketed tournaments, so their average opponent scores remain stable through all three rankings. Of these teams, four are participating in round-robin events, while La Salle is skipping an exempt event entirely.

Worst-Case (Minimum) Schedule Ranking

Team Opponent Score Distance From Average
(1.360)
At-Large Pool Rank
(out of 135)
A 10 Rank
(out of 14)
Saint Joseph's 1.671 +0.311 11 1
Davidson 1.634 +0.274 14 2
Rhode Island 1.591 +0.231 19 3
La Salle 1.499 +0.139 34 4
VCU 1.406 +0.046 53 5
George Washington 1.386 +0.026 59 6
St. Bonaventure 1.326 -0.035 72 7
Dayton 1.293 -0.067 80 8
Massachusetts 1.288 -0.072 81 9
George Mason 1.223 -0.137 97 10
Richmond 1.203 -0.158 102 11
Saint Louis 1.200 -0.161 104 12
Fordham 1.155 -0.205 111 13
Duquesne 1.145 -0.215 114 14
Atlantic 10 Average 1.358 0.000 3 of 9*

* American, A 10, ACC, Big 12, Big East, Big Ten, MW, Pac-12, SEC

Somehow, the bottom half of the Paradise Jam field pushes the Hawks past the Wildcats in the event of a trip to the 7th/8th-place game of their respective exempt events. But a possible "loss to Nebraska-loss to Portland-third game against Cal State Northridge" drops Dayton out of the top half of the conference (and at-large pool) rankings in the event of a disastrous Thanksgiving weekend in Orange County.

True Road And Non-D1 Games

True Road Games
Scheduled
True Road Games
Scheduled Against
Non-Power 6 Teams
Non-Division I Games
Scheduled
37 26 3


With the Atlantic 10 outside of the Power 6, its members have naturally scheduled a few more road games against fellow mid-majors than their power conference counterparts. Dayton, Fordham, and George Mason all have non-Division I opponents on their slates, with the Rams' and Patriots' doing so to get the maximum four games out of their exempt tourneys.

As I examine each of the 14 schedules, you'll be able to quickly note the teams with national ambitions from those going through a transition or rebuilding phase.

Team Capsules

Davidson

Davidson Wildcats

Average Opponent Score 1.765 (avg.); 1.864 (max.); 1.634 (min.)
At-Large Pool Ranking 9th (avg.); 5th (max.); 14th (min.)
A 10 Ranking 1st (avg.); 1st (max.); 2nd (min.)
Exempt Event (*) Tire Pros Puerto Rico Tip-Off (three at Lake Buena Vista, Fla.)
True Home Games
(4)
Semi-Home Games
(0)
True Neutral-Site Games
(3)
Semi-Away Games
(1)
True Away Games (3)
Charlotte
Appalachian State
Hartford
Jacksonville

Clemson*
Xavier/Missouri*
Oklahoma/Northern Iowa/Arizona State/Tulane*
Kansas
(Kansas City)
North Carolina
Mercer
College of Charleston


The Wildcats' schedule has a Carolinas/Southern-focus (including their Puerto Rico Florida opener), with their games away from Belk Arena providing just about all of this slate's heft. If you've read this series in the order of publication, you'll notice that Davidson is first Top 10 schedule, at least in terms of the average ranking, to appear. That's thanks to a true road game against UNC, a game in KU's backyard, and potential neutral-court contests with both Xavier and Oklahoma.

Bob McKillop's squad will only play 11 non-conference games despite participating in an exempt tournament, so they're two short of the max. With four winnable home contests, the Wildcats will need to win two away from Belk to get to 6-5 heading into A 10 play. They'll probably have to exceed that mark to have a real at-large chance at the start of January.

For more info on Davidson's November and December slate, check out Greg Mitchell's thoughts over at Mid-Major Madness.

Dayton

Dayton Flyers

Average Opponent Score 1.402 (avg.); 1.501 (max.); 1.293 (min.)
At-Large Pool Ranking 68th (avg.); 56th (max.); 80th (min.)
A 10 Ranking 7th (avg.); 6th (max.); 8th (min.)
Exempt Event* Directv Wooden Legacy (2 at Fullerton, Calif., 1 at Anaheim, Calif.)
True Home Games
(7)
Semi-Home Games
(0)
True Neutral-Site Games
(1-3)
Semi-Away Games
(0-2)
True Away Games (1)
Vanderbilt
Saint Mary's
Winthrop
ETSU
Austin Peay
VMI
St. Joseph's (Ind.) (non-D1)

Nebraska*
UCLA/Portland*
Texas A&M/
New Mexico/
Virginia Tech/
Cal State Northridge*
UCLA/Portland*
Texas A&M/
New Mexico
Virginia Tech/
Cal State Northridge*
Northwestern
(Chicago)
Alabama


Other than the addition of a game against a non-D1 foe (tsk tsk) and a State Farm Chicago Legends contest against Northwestern in the Wildcats' backyard (though I wouldn't be surprised if Flyer fans make the placement of that one in the "semi-away" category look silly), Dayton's 2016-17 slate is almost a mirror image of the 2015-16 one—which should be good enough to get Archie MIller's team to another 7 seed at worst. This time around games against Vanderbilt and Alabama swap locations from a season ago, while the Flyers' exempt event takes place in the shadow of Disneyland, not Walt Disney World.

But there's one other significant difference between the 2016 Wooden Legacy and 2015 AdvoCare Invitational—the presence of a local favorite in this season's field of eight. With a win over Nebraska in the quarterfinals, Dayton would likely face UCLA—in the cozy confines of the 4,000-seat Titan Gym on the campus of Cal State Fullerton. Considering how Dayton fans traveled to Orlando last year, that matchup might end up not looking like a "semi-away" game either.

Duquesne

Duquesne Dukes

Average Opponent Score 1.145
At-Large Pool Ranking 117th (avg.); 124th (max.); 114th (min.)
A 10 Ranking 14th (avg.); 14th (max.); 14th (min.)
Exempt Event* Bluegrass Showcase (three at home, one away)
True Home Games
(9)
Semi-Home Games
(0)
True Neutral-Site Games
(2)
Semi-Away Games
(0)
True Away Games (2)
Canisius*
Cleveland State*
Colgate
UT Martin*
Loyola (Md.)
St. Francis (Pa.)
Jackson State
UMBC
Central Connecticut State

Pittsburgh
(Consol Energy Center)
Robert Morris
(Consol Energy Center)

Kentucky*
Penn State


Other than their trip to Lexington to play second banana in Kentucky's round-robin exempt event, the Dukes won't leave the state of Pennsylvania during the first half of the season. However, given the general strength of the opposition, only wins over the Wildcats, Pitt, and Penn State would put Jim Ferry's squad in the January NCAA picture a year after participating in the CBI.

Note that Duquesne's game against Pittsburgh counts as a Panther home game and the Robert Morris one as a Colonials home tilt. However, since the Dukes consider Consol a secondary home court, I've classed those games as neutral-site affairs. Note that Duquesne will host Dayton there in January—and I'll reuse all my jokes about Flyer fans taking over the building then too. (And I'll do it again when the Atlantic 10 Tournament unfolds there in March.)

Fordham

Fordham Rams

Average Opponent Score 1.155
At-Large Pool Ranking 116th (avg.); 121st (max.); 111th (min.)
A 10 Ranking 13th (avg.); 13th (max.); 13th (min.)
Exempt Event* Fordham Showcase (four at home)
True Home Games
(7)
Semi-Home Games
(0)
True Neutral-Site Games
(1)
Semi-Away Games
(0)
True Away Games (4)
UT Arlington
Rider
Saint Peter's*
Sacred Heart
Lipscomb*
Fairleigh Dickinson*
NYIT (non-D1)*

Rutgers
(MSG)

Harvard
St. John's
Manhattan
ETSU


Jeff Neubauer's second Fordham schedule is just as ambitious as his first. When you combine that piece of info with the fact that Duquesne's is the only one worse in the Atlantic 10, well, I really don't need to say much more, do I? The Rams' seemingly continuous quest to get themselves to A 10 relevancy rolls on for yet another year. However, general improvement in the quality of basketball played in the New York City area would help Fordham's cause considerably.

Greg Mitchell again has thoughts on Fordham's slate for Mid-Major Madness, and his URL says it all.

GMU

George Mason Patriots

Average Opponent Score 1.298 (avg.); 1.351 (max.); 1.223 (min.)
At-Large Pool Ranking 87th (avg.); 82nd (max.); 97th (min.)
A 10 Ranking 9th (avg.); 8th (max.); 10th (min.)
Exempt Event* Gulf Coast Showcase (one at home, three at Estero, Fla.)
True Home Games
(7)
Semi-Home Games
(0)
True Neutral-Site Games
(3)
Semi-Away Games
(0)
True Away Games (3)
James Madison
Mercer
Towson
Mount St. Mary's
Longwood
Prairie View A&M
Lebanon Valley
(non-D1)*

Houston*
Kent State/
South Dakota*
Vermont/
Hofstra/
Wofford/Bradley

Northern Iowa
Penn State
Penn


Speaking of rebuilding, Dave Paulsen still has a ton work to do in Fairfax in his second season. And a schedule that's heavy on potentially winnable home games against local rivals reflects that. At least the Patriots get trips to the Palestra and sunny Southwest Florida out of this slate.

GW

George Washington Colonials

Average Opponent Score 1.448 (avg.); 1.511 (max.); 1.386 (min.)
At-Large Pool Ranking 55th (avg.); 52nd (max.); 59th (min.)
A 10 Ranking 6th (avg.); 5th (max.); 6th (min.)
Exempt Event CBE Hall of Fame Classic (two at home, two at Kansas City, Mo.)
True Home Games
(7)
Semi-Home Games
(1)
True Neutral-Site Games
(1-2)
Semi-Away Games
(0-1)
True Away Games (2)
Penn State
Siena*
UCF
USF
UMES
Howard
UAPB*
Florida State
(Verizon Center)
Georgia*
Kansas/UAB*
Kansas/UAB* Miami (Fla.)
Temple


After just missing the NCAAs last season, Mike Lonergan beefed up the Colonials' slate for this year a bit—before he was relieved of his duties weeks before the season's start due to a university investigation into accusations of player abuse. Now, it's interim coach Maurice Joseph's task to guide GW through a slate that includes a set of home games the Colonials should honestly sweep (GW beat UCF and USF away last year and gets Penn State at home for a second year in a row, which is bizarre) and several difficult contests away from the Smith Center. The capper of the five games away from Foggy Bottom is the tantalizing possibility of a showdown in Kansas City against the Kansas Jayhawks. But to get there, GW will first need to topple a decent Georgia team in the CBE semifinals.

La Salle

La Salle Explorers

Average Opponent Score 1.499
At-Large Pool Ranking 47th (avg.); 57th (max.); 34th (min.)
A 10 Ranking 4th (avg.); 7th (max.); 4th (min.)
Exempt Event* None
True Home Games
(6)

Semi-Home Games
(0)

True Neutral-Site Games
(2)

Semi-Away Games
(0)

True Away Games (3)
Bucknell
FGCU
Lehigh
Texas Southern
Delaware
Penn

Villanova
(The Palestra)
Georgetown
(Miami)

Temple
Mercer
Drexel


Thanks to the strength of the top of the Big Five and five games against perennial mid-major contenders, Dr. John Giannini has built his team a slate that holds up well despite the lack of an exempt tournament. That doesn't mean the Explorers won't be going anywhere exciting in the fall, as a trip to Miami to take on Georgetown in a Hall of Fame showcase is a nice consolation for the lack of tournament play. However, if the Hoyas, Temple, and any of the quality mids struggle, La Salle's slate could look noticeably thin by the time January rolls around.

UMass

UMass Minutemen

Average Opponent Score 1.288
At-Large Pool Ranking 92nd (avg.); 96th (max.); 81st (min.)
A 10 Ranking 10th (avg.); 10th (max.); 9th (min.)
Exempt Event* Gotham Classic (four at home)
True Home Games
(9)
Semi-Home Games
(0)
True Neutral-Site Games
(0)
Semi-Away Games
(1)
True Away Games (3)
Temple
Harvard
Rider*
Pacific*
UCF
Wagner
Kennesaw State*
UMass Lowell
North Carolina A&T*

Holy Cross
(DCU Center, Worcester, Mass.)
Providence
Ole Miss
Georgia State


Since the Gazelle Group was unable to get a major conference team to join UMass in the Gotham Classic, that event won't feature its traditional showcase game at Madison Square Garden in December. So, the Minutemen's exempt tournament now features four very winnable home games and leaves them needing to make an impression in their four games away from home and in Temple and Harvard's visits to Amherst. To have any NCAA surprise NCAA hopes, Derek Kellogg will also need the Owls, Providence, and Ole Miss to overperform their preseason projections.

URI

Rhode Island Rams

Average Opponent Score 1.627 (avg.); 1.664 (max.); 1.591 (min.)
At-Large Pool Ranking 21st (avg.); 22nd (max.); 19th (min.)
A 10 Ranking 3rd (avg.); 3rd (max.); 3rd (min.)
Exempt Event* Hall of Fame Tip-Off (two at home, two in Uncasville, Conn.)
True Home Games
(7)
Semi-Home Games
(0)
True Neutral-Site Games
(2)

Semi-Away Games
(0)

True Away Games (3)
Old Dominion
Belmont
William & Mary
Dartmouth
Holy Cross
Brown*
Marist*

Cincinnati*
Duke/Penn State*

Providence
Valparaiso
Houston


Dan Hurley gets E.C. Matthews back from a knee injury, meaning the Rams should challenge for an at-large bid after a 17-15 campaign that saw Rhody rally late. With a Sunday matchup against Duke potentially looming for the victor, the Saturday Hall of Fame Tip-Off semifinal against Cincinnati is the most important on URI's slate. However, don't sleep on the Rams' away games, as all three opponents might possibly join them on the bubble between January and March.

A sneaky good group of teams is headed to the Ryan Center this fall, but it's a shame Albany wasn't sent to Kingston as part of their participation in the Hall of Fame Tip-Off.

Over at Mid-Major Madness, Greg Mitchell has a more comprehensive look at Rhode Island's early season slate.

Richmond

Richmond Spiders

Average Opponent Score 1.239 (avg.); 1.275 (max.); 1.203 (min.)
At-Large Pool Ranking 101st (avg.); 100th (max.); 102nd (min.)
A 10 Ranking 11th (avg.); 11th (max.); 11th (min.)
Exempt Event* Barclays Center Classic (two at home, two in Brooklyn)
True Home Games
(7)
Semi-Home Games
(0)
True Neutral-Site Games
(2)
Semi-Away Games
(0)
True Away Games (3)
Texas Tech
Old Dominion
Wake Forest
Robert Morris*
Hampton*
VMI
UMBC

Maryland*
Kansas State/
Boston College*

James Madison Bucknell
Oral Roberts


With Chris Mooney open to playing any team anywhere, Spider schedules during his tenure have typically ranked as among the most unique in Division I. For instance, in this season alone, Richmond will welcome two Power 6 teams to the Robins Center and travel to Oral Roberts. The visits from the Red Raiders (in Chris Beard's first season in charge) and Old Dominion look to be the most important ones, while the Wake Forest game has the potential to be an "Oh. That happened" win come Selection Sunday.

Richmond's trip to Brooklyn for the Barclays Center Classic should result in at least a split, since BC and K-State aren't likely to contend for an at-large this season. But the Spiders can really put themselves on the map by defeating Maryland in the semifinals on Black Friday.

St Bona

St. Bonaventure Bonnies

Average Opponent Score 1.326
At-Large Pool Ranking 82nd (avg.); 90th (max.); 72nd (min.)
A 10 Ranking 8th (avg.); 9th (max.); 7th (min.)
Exempt Event* Lone Star Showcase (three at Cedar Park, Texas)
True Home Games
(6)
Semi-Home Games
(0)
True Neutral-Site Games
(4)
Semi-Away Games
(1)
True Away Games (1)
Buffalo
UNCW
Canisius
Siena
Army West Point
St. Francis (Pa.)

Pepperdine*
Little Rock*
Central Michigan*
Niagara
(Buffalo)
Florida
(Lakeland, Fla.)
Hofstra


Last season, the Bonnies missed the NCAAs due to their non-conference schedule. After looking at this slate, I'm not sure that the Selection Committee's message was clearly received in Olean. That being said, it's difficult to attract teams to the Reilly Center—getting a pair of 2016 NCAA qualifiers to come to town is a feat, even if both claimed auto bids and one is a local rival. Plus, St. Bonaventure's exempt tournament also had a difficult time filling its field—the Lone Star Showcase was supposed to be an eight-team bracket—but the Bonnies' three opponents in what's now a round-robin in Texas aren't hapless. Not in the least.

However, Mark Schmidt's squad might have been better served by skipping an event this year and scheduling a couple more quality road games, particularly since the Bonnies only have 12 non-conference games on their plate anyway.

Saint Joes

Saint Joseph's Hawks

Average Opponent Score 1.753 (avg.); 1.833 (max.); 1.671 (min.)
At-Large Pool Ranking 11th (avg.); 7th (max.); 11th (min.)
A 10 Ranking 2nd (avg.); 2nd (max.); 1st (min.)
Exempt Event* U.S. Virgin Islands Paradise Jam (three in Saint Thomas, V.I.)
True Home Games
(4)
Semi-Home Games
(0)
True Neutral-Site Games
(3)
Semi-Away Games
(0)
True Away Games (5)
Temple
Toledo
Columbia
Lafayette

Loyola (Chicago)*
Ole Miss/
Oral Roberts*
Creighton/
North Carolina State/
Montana/
Washington State*

Villanova
Princeton
Illinois State
Drexel
Penn


For much of last winter, the Hawks shared the bubble with St. Bonaventure, but thanks in part to a superior non-conference schedule, Saint Joe's ended up in the field of 68 with a bit of breathing room, while the Bonnies ended up in the NIT. Phil Martelli's 2016-17 team won't be quite as talented as last year's version, but this slate gives them room to grow. In particular, the early timing of the Paradise Jam and its relatively unimpressive field give the Hawks a chance to grab some useful wins and earn some pre-Thanksgiving publicity. With some early confidence, Saint Joseph's could surprise when things get tougher later on—particularly when the four local away games come around.

Saint Louis

Saint Louis Billikens

Average Opponent Score 1.201 (avg.); 1.203 (max.); 1.199 (min.)
At-Large Pool Ranking 106th (avg.); 111th (max.); 104th (min.)
A 10 Ranking 12th (avg.); 12th (max.); 12th (min.)
Exempt Event* MGM Grand Main Event (two at home, two at Las Vegas)
True Home Games
(9)
Semi-Home Games
(0)
True Neutral-Site Games
(2)
Semi-Away Games
(0)
True Away Games (2)
Kansas State
Winthrop
Ball State*
Eastern Illinois
Samford
SIU Edwardsville
North Carolina A&T
Southern Utah*
Chicago State

BYU*
Valparaiso/Alabama*

Wichita State
Southern Illinois


The Billikens won 22 games over the last two seasons—five fewer than the 2013-14 Atlantic 10 champion squad managed on its own. And that's why former Oklahoma State coach Travis Ford will roam the coaching box formerly occupied by Jim Crews this season. SLU's recent struggles should likely continue, and Billiken fans shouldn't get too excited if the squad gets to January with a record of .500 or better. Yes, Saint Louis will take its lumps, particularly in Las Vegas over Thanksgiving week and in its two true road games, but a home-heavy slate will give the Billkens a shot at seven or eight early-season victories.

VCU

VCU Rams

Average Opponent Score 1.486 (avg.); 1.551 (max.); 1.406 (min.)
At-Large Pool Ranking 51st (avg.); 46th (max.); 53rd (min.)
A 10 Ranking 5th (avg.); 4th (max.); 5th (min.)
Exempt Event* Battle 4 Atlantis (one at home, three at Paradise Island, Bahamas)
True Home Games
(7)
Semi-Home Games
(0)
True Neutral-Site Games
(4)
Semi-Away Games
(0)
True Away Games (2)
Georgia Tech
Princeton
Middle Tennessee
UNC Asheville
ULM
Howard
Binghamton*

Baylor*
Michigan State/
St. John's*
Louisville/Wichita State/
LSU/Old Dominion*
Illinois (Miami)

Old Dominion
Liberty


The Rams' schedule has the potential to position them for a seventh-consecutive NCAA appearance and second straight under Will Wade. While the highlight of the schedule is VCU's second trip to the Battle 4 Atlantis, a tricky first game against Baylor highlights why I use the word "potential," as there's a significant difference between spending Thanksgiving and Black Friday afternoons playing (probably) Michigan State and Louisville or Wichita State on an ESPN outlet or being relegated to the evening sessions on AXS TV, especially since the Rams already have to go to Norfolk to play ODU anyway.

Should the worst case scenario unfold in the Bahamas, that trip to the Monarchs' building and home games against Princeton and Middle Tennessee would zoom up the importance scale and the Rams would still be left with much work to do toward earning a bid during the Atlantic 10 campaign.

It's a shame that VCU's home-and-home series against Virginia starts next season.

Speaking of the Cavaliers, it's the ACC's turn tomorrow.

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