DavidsonDuquesneFordhamGame PreviewsGeorge MasonLa SalleSt. BonaventureTourney CentralUMASSVCU

Thursday A10 Tourney Preview and Prediction

As you all know, the A10 has decided to go on with the games in response to the coronavirus outbreak, but without fans and spectators.  This is a huge blow for the league and all of college basketball.  Media is credentialed to be there still, so the A10 Talk staff will still be in attendance to give you all the latest information on the games.  On the bright side, at least we still have games.

8 UMass vs 9 VCU

Time:  12:00 ET

TV:  NBC Sports Network

Regular Season Matchup:  UMass 60, VCU 52

What to watch for:

  • Tre Mitchell vs. Marcus Santos-Silva.  Mitchell has been on a tear as of late and probably has a chip on his shoulder after being snubbed off of the first-team all-conference honors (in my personal opinion). Santos-Silva was left off the awards list completely.  Who’s shoulder chip is bigger?
  • VCU is most likely going to have a few players out, including Corey Douglass and De’Riante Jenkins.  We will know at game time who is all out for the Rams.
  • Carl Pierre is going to have to compliment Mitchell in a big way.  He is the Minutemen’s key to beating VCU for a second time this season.  He had 21 points in the first meeting, so they need him again.
  • Who knows what the status of Marcus Evans is, so Bones Hyland will have to play big as a starter, just as he has the past few games for VCU.

Prediction:

Tre Mitchell’s dominance in the A10 combined with the VCU injuries and lack of key players does not make a good mix for the Rams.  Bones will keep it interesting.  UMass 65, VCU 61

 

12 George Mason vs 5 St. Bonaventure

Time:  2:30 ET

TV:  NBC Sports Network

Regular Season Matchups:  

  • Bona 61, Mason 49
  • Bona 74, Mason 65

What to watch for:

  • Can Bona win for a third time in one season?  We saw Fordham do it to George Washington earlier, so it could happen.  It is still a hard task for any team to do.
  • The battle down low between AJ Wilson and Osun Osuniyi.  Wilson has been one of the most dominant bigs in the league lately for Mason.  Osun just wrapped up an all-defensive team award.
  • Kyle Lofton vs. Javon Greene.  These guys have to get it going offensively for their teams.  If one of them is off, it is hard to find someone other than their star bigs who can carry them to a victory.

Prediction:  

I’m calling a huge upset in this one.  AJ Wilson has been virtually unstoppable lately, and Bona has been struggling coming into the tournament.  Mason 72, Bona 69

 

7 Davidson vs 10 La Salle

Time:  6:00 ET

TV:  NBC Sports Network

Regular Season Result:  Davidson 74, La Salle 49

What To Watch For:

  • Without Ed Croswell for the Explorers, Davidson will have an advantage down low with Brakjovic.  It will be interesting how La Salle adjusts their game plan to his absence.
  • Can Isaiah Deas get it going?  The senior had 16 points in the upset of Bona.  He, along with David Beatty, need to have a huge impact in this game to pull off another upset like that.
  • Does La Salle have enough scoring to keep up with Davidson?  The Wildcats are the second best offense in the A10 behind Dayton, and La Salle is #227 on AdjO in the country.  Not good.

Prediction:

If you saw the first game, you saw how bad of a matchup Davidson is for La Salle.  This will go about the same as that.  Davidson 76, La Salle 58

 

6 Duquesne vs 14 Fordham

Time:  8:30 ET

TV:  NBC Sports Network

Regular Season Results:

  • Duquesne 58, Fordham 56
  • Duquesne 59, Fordham 54

What To Watch For:

  • Can Fordham’s offense carry over from Wednesday?  We saw the Rams’ defense stiffle GW, but their offense figured it out in a rout of the Colonials.  Can Duquesne stop it if the Rams bring the scoring again?
  • Which defense will prevail?  Both these teams play stout defense, so which one will hold up better?
  • Michael Hughes vs Joel Soriano.  Soriano had 14 and 12 for the Rams against a mediocre GW defense.  Duquesne is way better, so how will he do against a stout rim protector like Hughes?
  • Balanced scoring:  Neither team has a big time scorer, so it is important that both teams get scoring from many players.  Fordham had 4 players in double figures against GW.

Prediction:

Both of the regular season games were close, but Duquesne squeaked out both of them.  I say this happens again just because Duquesne has just enough guys to get it done on offense.  Fordham won’t have an offensive day against the defense of Duquesne like they did against GW.  History says that as well.  Duquesne 62, Fordham 54

 

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