VCU has lost two straight games to CAA teams. The Rams are in need of a solid win against JMU later this evening. The Dukes, however, have been known to make things difficult.
- What: VCU Rams (11-5,2-2) host JMU Dukes (8-7,1-3)
- Where: Stuart C. Siegel Center
- When: Thursday January 12th
- Watch: Online or ESPNU
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Last year, JMU was the exclamation point on VCU’s horrendous (!) February. After disappointing losses to Northeastern and Drexel on the road and home losses to George Mason and Old Dominion, JMU hit a buzzer beater to hand VCU its third home loss of the season. Like last season, VCU finds itself in a little bit of a rut after dropping two CAA games in a row to fall into 6th place. Bradford Burgess and Rob Brandenberg have shot a combined 12-63 in 2012, and Briante Weber, after earning the CAA Rookie of the Week award, had a pair of disappointing games. The Rams desperately need a good shooting performance and strong defensive showing in the comfortable confines of the Siegel Center to help rebuild their confidence and get competitive in the CAA.
Fortunately for the Rams, the 6’-10” Denzel Bowles graduated last season, and so the Dukes are playing a much smaller lineup. JMU returns an experienced back court in Devon Moore and Humpty Hitchens that knows what it is like to play against VCU’s HAVOC defense. The past few games, the Ram’s CAA opponents have looked more comfortable against the press than their non-conference opponents.
Junior transfer AJ Davis leads the Dukes in scoring and is a respectable rebounder at 6’-6”. After sitting out a season, he has proven that he has the ability to explode and hit 3-pointers. Fortunately for the Rams, he has struggled from 3-point range, shooting just 1-17 from beyond the arc in 2012.
Ken Pomeroy’s website picks VCU to win 76-59 with a 93% chance of victory. VCU should–and needs–to win this game to stay competitive in the CAA. The margin of victory is totally dependent on how the struggling Rams shoot the ball.
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- Location: Harrisonburg, VA
- Conference: CAA
- All time series: VCU leads 43-21
- Last meeting: JMU won 69-72
- Student Enrollment: 18,971
- Established: 1908
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