Grading Atlantic 10 Conference Schedules

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The Atlantic 10 Conference released scheduling for 2018 conference play on Wednesday. Some A-10 teams now know their entire schedules for the 2017-18 season. Some teams get to face better opponents at home, while others have brutal road slates and easy home games. Here’s a look at each team’s conference schedule.

Davidson Wildcats

Home- La Salle, Massachusetts, Saint Joseph’s, Saint Louis, Fordham, George Washington, Rhode Island, Richmond, St. Bonaventure

Away – Dayton, Duquesne, George Mason, VCU, Fordham, George Washington, Rhode Island, Richmond, St. Bonaventure

Davidson gets to face Rhode Island and St. Bonaventure twice, making for some tough home and away games but also some great opportunities. The Wildcats will also play host to Saint Joseph’s and Saint Louis, two teams that are likely to be ranked ahead of Davidson heading into next season. The Cats have a chance to beat quality A-10 teams at home, but they’ll also have to take on VCU and Dayton on the road. Davidson will likely be a middle-of-the-pack team, and their schedule seems to show that.

Big Win Opportunities: B+

Relative Easiness: B-

 

Dayton Flyers

Home – Davidson, Fordham, George Washington, St. Bonaventure, Duquesne, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Saint Louis, VCU

Away –  La Salle, George Mason, Richmond, Saint Joseph’s, Duquesne, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Saint Louis, VCU

Dayton has one of the more difficult conference slates. Having to face Rhode Island, Saint Louis, and VCU twice will likely mean at least 3 conference losses. Factor in a road game against Saint Joseph’s as well, and you’ll realize that the Flyers are really going to be tested away from home. This also means that Anthony Grant’s squad is going to have some big opportunities in league play; if he wants to make the NCAA Tournament as Dayton’s first-year head coach, he’ll have to beat St. Bonaventure, Rhode Island, and VCU at home.

Big Win Opportunities: A-

Relative Easiness: C+

 

Duquesne Dukes

Home – Davidson, George Mason, La Salle, Richmond, Dayton, Fordham, George Washington, St. Bonaventure, Saint Louis

Away–  Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Saint Joseph’s, VCU, Dayton, Fordham, George Washington, St. Bonaventure, Saint Louis

Duquesne is already going to have a tough time in conference play, being one of the worst teams in the league. That said, its conference slate isn’t going to do it any favors. The Dukes have to play Dayton, St. Bonaventure, and Saint Louis twice, all 6 games of which will probably be big losses. Not to mention, playing Rhode Island, Saint Joseph’s, and VCU away from home is going to be almost impossible. There are plenty of upsets for the Dukes to pull, but I just don’t see any of them happening barring a meltdown from one of the top dogs.

Big Win Opportunities: A

Relative Easiness: D+

 

Fordham Rams

Home – George Mason, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Richmond, Davidson, Duquesne, La Salle, Saint Joseph’s, VCU

Away – Dayton, George Washington, St. Bonaventure, Saint Louis, Davidson, Duquesne, La Salle, Saint Joseph’s, VCU

In all honesty, the Rams don’t have the most difficult schedule in the world. Getting to play Duquesne and La Salle twice means probably picking up 2 conference wins somewhere in that mix. Home games against George Mason, Massachusetts, and Richmond could be competitive matchups. The Rams are going to get killed on the road when they face Dayton, George Washington, St. Bonaventure, Saint Louis, Saint Joseph’s, and VCU, but if they could defend home court, there might be 5 or 6 conference wins in the mix for the Fordham Rams.

Big Win Opportunities: B-

Relative Easiness: A-

 

George Mason Patriots

Home- Davidson, Dayton, St. Bonaventure, Saint Louis George Washington, Massachusetts, Richmond, Saint Joseph’s, VCU

Away- Duquesne, Fordham, La Salle, Rhode Island, George Washington, Massachusetts, Richmond, Saint Joseph’s, VCU

George Mason is going to have a ton of enormous games in Fairfax. Playing host to Davidson, Dayton, St. Bonaventure, Saint Louis, Saint Joseph’s, and VCU, it’s likely that George Mason picks up a few big conference wins next season. The road isn’t too rough for George Mason either; Massachusetts, Duquesne, Fordham, La Salle, and Richmond are all teams that can be beaten away from home. I really like the way this team’s conference schedule sets up, and if it can bring out a supportive home crowd, it’s going to have a chance to make some serious noise in Atlantic 10 play.

Big Win Opportunities: A

Relative Easiness: A

 

George Washington Colonials

Home– Fordham, La Salle, Rhode Island, Saint Joseph’s, Davidson, Duquesne, George Mason, Richmond, VCU 

Away –Dayton, Massachusetts, St. Bonaventure, Saint Louis, Davidson, Duquesne, George Mason, Richmond, VCU

George Washington’s schedule is pretty average. The Colonials only have to face Dayton, Rhode Island, St. Bonaventure, and Saint Louis once, but three of those games will be on the road. The Colonials have a pretty easy home slate, but the road isn’t likely to treat them well. With all of the outgoing transfers and given Maurice Joseph’s transition as a full-time head coach, I wouldn’t expect a big year from George Washington.

Big Win Opportunities: B-

Relative Easiness: B-

 

La Salle Explorers

Home – Dayton, George Mason, St. Bonaventure, VCU, Fordham, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Saint Joseph’s, Saint Louis

Away – Davidson, Duquesne, George Washington, Richmond, Fordham, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Saint Joseph’s, Saint Louis

La Salle’s road schedule is very easy. The Explorers get to face Davidson, Duquesne, George Washington, Fordham, Richmond, and Massachusetts away from home. Any of those teams can be beaten in their home arenas. At home, they’ll have a tough time with Dayton, St. Bonaventure, and VCU, but at least they won’t have to travel to take on those teams. La Salle’s schedule looks very favorable, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Explorers win a couple of big games in conference play next season.

Big Win Opportunities: A-

Relative Easiness: B+

 

Massachusetts Minutemen

Home – Duquesne, George Washington, Saint Louis, VCU, Dayton, George Mason, La Salle, Rhode Island, Saint Joseph’s

Away–  Davidson, Fordham, Richmond, St. Bonaventure, Dayton, George Mason, La Salle, Rhode Island, Saint Joseph’s

Massachusetts isn’t going to like having to play Dayton and Rhode Island twice, and road games against St. Bonaventure and Davidson aren’t going to be very easy either. I don’t see Massachusetts beating Saint Louis or VCU at home, but at least they don’t have to go on the road for those games. Honestly, the Minutemen are going to struggle, and this schedule isn’t doing them that many favors. It could be worse though; at least they have two opportunities against beatable teams in George Mason and La Salle.

Big Win Opportunities: B+

Relative Easiness: C+

 

Rhode Island Rams

Home – Duquesne, George Mason, Richmond, Saint Joseph’s, Davidson, Dayton, La Salle, Massachusetts, St. Bonaventure

Away – Fordham, George Washington, Saint Louis, VCU, Davidson, Dayton, La Salle, Massachusetts, St. Bonaventure

Two games against St. Bonaventure and Dayton make Rhode Island’s schedule difficult. Also, factor in road games against VCU and Saint Louis. The Rams have easy opponents at home (Duquesne, George Mason, Richmond), and they’re going to have to be road warriors if they want to win the Atlantic 10. I think this schedule sets up for some big wins, but the Rams might have to defy the odds in order to get some of them.

Big Win Opportunities: A

Relative Easiness: B-

 

Richmond Spiders

Home – Dayton, La Salle, Massachusetts, Saint Joseph’s, Davidson, George Mason, George Washington, Saint Louis, VCU

Away– Duquesne, Fordham, Rhode Island, St. Bonaventure, Davidson, George Mason, George Washington, Saint Louis, VCU 

Richmond’s schedule is pretty tough, as the Spiders will have to face Rhode Island, St. Bonaventure, Saint Louis, and VCU on the road. A home game against Dayton is a good opportunity, but hosting La Salle and Massachusetts won’t help this team’s resume at all. Two games against Davidson, George Mason, and George Washington likely won’t carry much merit, but they will be competitive games that will be fun to watch.

Big Win Opportunities: B-

Relative Easiness: B-

 

Saint Joseph’s Hawks

Home – Dayton, Duquesne, Saint Louis, VCU, Fordham, George Mason, La Salle, Massachusetts, St. Bonaventure

Away – Davidson, George Washington, Rhode Island, Richmond, Fordham, George Mason, La Salle, Massachusetts, St. Bonaventure 

The Hawks’ schedule actually sets up pretty nicely to accumulate a lot of conference wins. Dual matchups against Fordham, George Mason, La Salle, and Massachusetts could honestly lead to 6 or 7 wins right there. The Hawks also get Dayton, Saint Louis, and VCU at home, which could all be big wins with the team Phil Martelli is returning. I think the Hawks got one of the best conference slates, and this could lead to a Top 5 finish.

Big Win Opportunities: B+

Relative Easiness: A

 

Saint Louis Billikens

Home – Fordham, George Washington, Rhode Island, VCU, Dayton, Duquesne, La Salle, Richmond, St. Bonaventure

Away – Davidson, George Mason, Massachusetts, Saint Joseph’s, Dayton, Duquesne, La Salle, Richmond, St. Bonaventure

Playing Dayton and St. Bonaventure twice will be tough, yes, but the Billikens get VCU and Rhode Island at home, two great opportunities. On the road, Saint Louis has a great shot of taking down Davidson, George Mason, Massachusetts, Duquesne, La Salle and Richmond. I really like this team heading into the 2017-18 season, and it definitely helps that the Billikens’ conference schedule is working in their favor.

Big Win Opportunities: A-

Relative Easiness: A-

 

St. Bonaventure Bonnies

Home –Fordham, George Washington, Massachusetts, Richmond, Davidson, Duquesne, Rhode Island, Saint Joseph’s, Saint Louis

Away– Dayton, George Mason, La Salle, VCU, Davidson, Duquesne, Rhode Island, Saint Joseph’s, Saint Louis

The Bonnies’ schedule will be very difficult, but that’s the road to making the NCAA Tournament. Having to play Rhode Island, Saint Joseph’s, and Saint Louis twice will be tough, and Dayton and VCU on the road won’t make things any easier. St. Bonaventure’s home slate is very easy, which is tough for the Bonnies because they’re going to have to win on the road. This is definitely one of the most challenging schedules in the Atlantic 10.

Big Win Opportunities: B-

Relative Easiness: C-

 

VCU Rams

Home –  Davidson, Duquesne, Rhode Island, St. Bonaventure, Dayton, Fordham, George Mason, George Washington, Richmond

Away – La Salle, Massachusetts, Saint Joseph’s, Saint Louis, Dayton, Fordham, George Mason, George Washington, Richmond

Playing Fordham, George Mason, George Washington, and Richmond twice sets up for some relatively easy conference wins at home and on the road. Even better for the Rams, they get St. Bonaventure and Rhode Island at home and don’t have to face those two on the road. Away games against Saint Joseph’s and Saint Louis should be tough, but La Salle and Massachusetts should be easy wins away from home.

Big Win Opportunities: A-

Relative Easiness: A-

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About Author

Grant Labedz

Grant Labedz is a college basketball superfan who loves the entire sport but definitely has favorites in the A-10 and the Big Ten. He has written for SB Nation's BT Powerhouse (Big Ten Basketball) and The Champaign Room (Illinois Basketball). He also co-founded his own Illinois Basketball blog called The Groce Report. Grant is a member of the Davidson Class of 2020. Shoot him an email at grant.labedz@gmail.com. Follow @GrantLabedz

5 Comments

  1. Jive36

    Grant – I really enjoy reading your A10 thoughts but when you are doing an article like this I think you need to define your grading scale. For example big win opportunities in this article it seem like you have drawn the conclusion that teams have a better chance of winning at home so if they play the tougher teams at home they received a better big win opportunities grade. When I think about big win opportunities I think about playing @Dayton, @VCU or @Bonas because road wins are weighted heavier by most ranking systems.
    So reading this article I kept disagreeing with your big win opportunities grades. If you had defined what the article was going to consider a big win opportunity it would have been better. imho The coach rankings also failed to define the parameters the coaches were ranked on. Providing more structure could have drastically improved that series as well especially when there were controversial rankings.
    Again I really appreciate the work that gets posted to this site and just wanted to voice my opinion on how the site and some of the articles could improve.

  2. Adam Lindner

    I think Duquesne should surprise some people with a few upsets — but you’re right, their lineup of home-and-home opponents is brutal. Can’t wait for the non-conference schedules to be released.

    • Bob Collamore on

      UMASS just released a brutal non-conference that has.

      South Carolina
      Georgia
      BYU
      Minnesota
      Providence
      East Carolina
      Georgia State
      Harvard

      Bob Collamore

      • Bob Collamore on

        SPRINGFIELD, MASS. – Breaking News. UMASS Brought In 8 power
        Newcomers.

        The New 8 Beasts Of The East.

        Power play move.

        Here is the Elite 8. Newly Considered via ESPN high – major

        overlapping New Recruiting Classes Repertoire in TOP 25 Rankings.

        The Sign of the new times.

        Jaylen Brantley – Maryland

        Keon Clergeot – Memphis

        Kieran Hayward – LSU

        Jonathan Laurent – Rutgers

        Cutis Cobb – Fairfield

        Unique McLean – Fr. New England Prep – McDuffie

        Khalra Turner- Morris – Fr. New England Prep – New Hampton, NH

        Carl Pierre – Boston College Catholic High School.

        According to ESPN tonight. UMASS has committed.

        Grand Larceny – The Steal Class In the Nation.

        A new Top 25 Class at UMASS – News In the A-10 Tonight.

        Bob Collamore

  3. Bob Collamore on

    SPRINGFIELD – “Could UMASS be the National “sleeper team.”

    Intrigue has reporters now just salivating tonight. Indeed.

    Look at UMASS brutal tough top 10 new RPI non- conference top games.

    Plus 8 new highly successful players in a nation powerful top 25 incoming class.

    11:45 – BC Report Combo Leak In Sports In New England

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