Game of the Day: Saint Joseph’s @ Massachusetts
The middle of the pack has not failed to deliver exciting games thus far; this could be another example. Massachusetts and Saint Joseph’s enter Sunday’s contest at 2-2, and for one of these teams, the chance to earn a winning record in conference play is a big opportunity. The Hawks are 0-2 in conference road games thus far but do boast wins over VCU and St. Bonaventure at Hagan Arena. On the flip side, Massachusetts had an embarrassing home loss to George Mason but also went on the road to down Dayton. Anything could happen.
The point guard matchup in this one is going to be incredible to watch. Both Shavar Newkirk and LuWane Pipkins, especially recently, have put up some killer performances and should have quite the scoring day at the top of the key. Newkirk is averaging 23.5 points, 8.5 rebounds, and 5 assists over his last 2 contests. On the other hand, sophomore Luwane Pipkins just dropped 44 on La Salle in a comeback win at home. Is it possible that these guards combine for more than 60 points on Sunday? Absolutely, and whichever one gives his team the biggest boost is likely going to leave Sunday’s contest with a 3-2 record.
Prediction: Massachusetts 76, Saint Joseph’s 75
Davidson @ Fordham
The Wildcats have been taking advantage of an easy start to league play, as this will be their 5th straight matchup against a team ranked 175th or worse in Kenpom. With that said, Davidson has crushed its opponents in the games it should be winning, and in New York today, the Wildcats have an opportunity to improve to 4-1 in league play, a tie for second with the Duquesne Dukes. Fordham’s defense has been its key this season, but stopping Davidson is no easy task. Chartouny and company will have to find a way to shut down Grady, Aldridge, and Gudmundsson from long range, and I don’t see that happening on Sunday.
Prediction: Davidson 84, Fordham 69