Date With the Wildcats
The Richmond Spiders (1-0) will take on the #10 Kentucky Wildcats (1-0) at 1:00 on ESPN. Coming off an 82-64 victory over Morehead State on Friday night, Richmond aims to win their first two contests of the season for the 2nd year in a row. Playing on the road against Kentucky is no easy task, but a confident and experienced Richmond basketball team has a real shot in this one. Let’s take a look at how Kentucky matches up:
Brandon Boston Jr. had an impressive debut for the Wildcats when they took on the Morehead State Eagles. Boston led Kentucky scoring with 15 points in 33 minutes of play. Olivier Sarr is a 7’0″ senior who will be a tough matchup down low for Grant Golden. Sarr saw 21 minutes of action on Wednesday night, but only grabbed 3 boards in their victory. As a team, Kentucky shot 33-59 from the field against the Eagles, knocking down 6-16 3-pointers as well. Kentucky shot just 64% from the charity stripe compared to Richmond’s 41.7%, which could be something to keep an eye on. The Wildcats turned the ball over 15 times against Morehead State, which could be a direct correlation to this talented but inexperienced bunch.
Chris Mooney has one of the most experienced rosters in the entire country. We got to see that on Friday night as Richmond ended up cruising to an 18 point victory. On the Spider Scoop Podcast, we have talked about who will be the “guy” with Nick Sherod missing the season due to a torn ACL. With an experienced team, you really have no idea who it will be on any given night, which can be a delight for Richmond. Nathan Cayo proved to be the “guy” on Friday night as he shot 10-10 from the field, finishing with 23 points. Tyler Burton was someone that has been thought to be the spark that this lineup needed to replace Nick. Burton did a great job on the boards as he snagged 12 rebounds, and also knocked down a 3 pointer. Grant Golden is going to have to have a monster game down low if the Spiders want to knock off a top 10 team this afternoon. He will have his hands full with Olivier Sarr down low and will need to continue to take smart shots and try to out finesse this Kentucky team.
Looking at this game, most of the country will automatically pick Kentucky because well, they are Kentucky. This is not only a great opportunity for the Spiders, but also a huge chance to further cement the Atlantic 10 across the nation. As a conference, it hasn’t been the strongest start, but look for Richmond to get a key win today. I’m going to go with Richmond 74 – Kentucky 70 in a nail biter. As always, be sure to follow along on Twitter at @AustinDaisey11 & and @A10Talk! See you this afternoon Spider Nation!