Spiders look to open the season 3-0
Richmond, coming off 2 straight overtime wins in front of the home faithful, welcome the Matadors from Cal State Northridge (0-4) to the Robins Center this afternoon at 4:00 (MASN & ESPN+). CSU-Northridge (222 Kenpom) faced Auburn in their last game, in what was a very lobsided affair where the Tigers won 116-70. This will be the first ever matchup between the Spiders and Matadors, in which will hopefully be an easier victory for Richmond compared to their previous 2 overtime thrillers. ESPN Basketball Power Index, which also predicted the 2 previous Spider victories, gives Richmond an 85.1% chance of winning.
Richmond bench should have plenty of opportunities
In the Spiders victory over Vanderbilt, the bench only provided 3 points through 45 minutes of gameplay. This game should give the Spider bench more opportunities to gel together as a unit, as this game heavily favors Richmond. If Mooney can get the bench going, I like how things could shake up for the Spiders this season. Jacob Gilyard led all scoring for the Spiders in their victory against the Commodores, where he scored 26. Two other Spiders also scored 20+ in the form of Blake Francis (24) and Nathan Cayo (20). If Chris Mooney’s squad can get out to an early lead, we could see a lot of the bench in this one.
After two nail biting finishes in Richmond’s first two games, I am not expecting this one to be close. Jacob Gilyard will lead the defensive charge again today, picking up where he left off from Thursday where he tallied 7 steals. Grant Golden was in the starting lineup last game despite his ankle injury, so hopefully he can shake some of the early season dust. Another player that I’m going to be really looking at will be Blake Francis, as he hyper-extended his left knee on Thursday, but claims to be ready to go later this afternoon. I’m going to go with Richmond 97 CSU-Northridge 75. Be sure to follow along on Twitter as well as our new and improved website, www.a10talk.com, and @A10Talk on Twitter. See you later Spider Nation!