Game of the Day: Massachusetts @ St. Bonaventure
Welcome to the start of A-10 play; the league has a few intriguing matchups on Saturday, and I found this one to be the most interesting. St. Bonaventure, fresh off a win in the Carrier Dome, will have to face a streaky Massachusetts team that has surprised plenty this year. The Minutemen own home wins over Georgia and Providence but have yet to win on the road this year. Beating the Bonnies will be a tall task.
Since his return to the starting lineup, Jaylen Adams has been nothing short of excellent for St. Bonaventure. He went for 23 points in a road win over Syracuse last week, and his partner in crime, Matt Mobley, hasn’t been too shabby this year either. Mobley hit the game-winner to beat Vermont a few weeks ago, and he’s always liable to put up 25-30 points.
If Massachusetts wants a shot, LuWane Pipkins and Carl Pierre are going to have to keep up from long range. Pierre is shooting 50% from three this season, so the Bonnies will certainly have their work cut out for them defending the perimeter. Look for an absolute showdown between two impressive backcourts.
Prediction: St. Bonaventure 77, Massachusetts 70
Fordham @ VCU
It’s a classic battle of the Rams in the A-10 opener, and VCU will look to avoid catastrophe against a Fordham team that caused it some trouble last season. VCU enters this one on a 3 game winning streak and has an 86% chance of victory according to Kenpom. Despite Fordham’s impressive first half against West Virginia the other day, I think VCU is going to be too much to handle today.
Prediction: VCU 83, Fordham 66
Saint Louis @ La Salle
Saint Louis comes into this one needing a big win to open up league play. SLU has shown signs of excellence in non-conference play, but it also fell hard on a few occasions. Either way, I think the Explorers will get a big game from B.J. Johnson and outlasted a spirited SLU charge.
Prediction: La Salle 69, Saint Louis 65
Dayton @ Duquesne
Dayton opens up as a slight favorite on the road against Duquesne, which makes for a very interesting A-10 opener. The Dukes have certainly been winning games, but they’ve yet to face many teams as good as the Flyers, which is saying a lot this year. I think Josh Cunningham is too much for Duquesne to handle, but if the Flyers neglect him in the post like they’ve been known to do, Duquesne could win this thing.
Prediction: Dayton 70, Duquesne 64
Saint Joseph’s @ George Washington
This one is basically a coin flip. I like the way the Hawks have been playing recently, and I think they’re on the rise in the Atlantic 10. Winning in Foggy Bottom would be a great start to conference play.
Prediction: Saint Joseph’s 75, George Washington 74
George Mason @ Rhode Island
Rhode Island will love this game, as it gets to open up A-10 play at home after some tune-up games that tested the Rams quite a bit. George Mason will prove to be much easier competition than Iona or College of Charleston, so I don’t expect Danny Hurley’s club to have any problems today.
Prediction: Rhode Island 86, George Mason 66
Davidson @ Richmond
The Wildcats are coming off a win over Akron in which Kellan Grady went off. I don’t think the Spiders will win many A-10 games this year, and this would certainly be a decimating loss if the Wildcats didn’t pull through. I’ll take Davidson, but if its three pointers aren’t going down, this thing could be close.
Prediction: Davidson 73, Richmond 68