• Sam Basel

A-10 Roundup Vol. 10: Dayton's Rising Stock, Team of the Week, Updated Rankings


The A-10 may be eating itself, but it's spitting out some winners. While a few top matchups may have been cancelled due to continuing virus issues, I think this week proved that there is still hope for the A-10 to be a three bid league. Here are my favorite takeaways from the week, my team of the week, and updated weekly/aggregate rankings.


Dayton Comes Away With Two Big Wins

I already talked about the Flyers win over Saint Louis on Friday, so I won't retread too much ground here. Long story short, Dayton was able to use the Billikens' break against them to pull off a close win, but solid performances from Jalen Crutcher and Ibi Watson shouldn't be attributed solely to a rusty opponent. Luckily for the Flyers, they were able to double down on their winning efforts by taking down URI on Saturday, 67-56. With Crutcher and Watson scoring 15 and 22 respectively, Dayton was able to completely dictate the tempo of the game, forcing the Rams to take some ugly shots, leading to an uncharacteristic 22% shooting from 3-point range. In a season in which a few poor non-conference wins brought in the doubters, Dayton is beginning to really get their team identity together. I still think an at-large bid is just out of reach for the Flyers, but Crutcher and Watson could be a formidable duo in the conference tournament.


VCU Pushes the Bubble's Limits

Call me crazy, bur I really think VCU could find themselves within the last four in come Selection Sunday. I think they'd have to come close to winning out to do it, but their current stretch in conference play just might push them over the edge. That loss against URI doesn't help them too much, but if they can split the series against Richmond, and get a win against a mid-level school like Dayton, I think they'll just make it. It's also important to remember that they will be hosting the conference tournament next month, and if they can use their home court advantage to bolster their defense, I see no reason why they can't challenge for the conference title.


Team of the Week

Forwards:

Sr. Marcus Weathers (DUQ)- I feel like if Duquesne had started off this season playing with their post-Sincere Carry rotation, they'd be in a bit better position then they are currently. They're playing as a much more cohesive unit, and Marcus Weathers' double-doubles against Fordham on Wednesday and St. Joe's on Saturday are a testament to that. He led his team past the Hawks with 24 points and 12 boards.


So. Tyler Burton (RICH)- Tyler Burton is on his way to being a top player in the conference for the next two years, and he showed that on Tuesday against St. Joe's. Originally coming off the bench in short stints his freshman year, Burton has become a tenacious second-chance scorer, and will be the biggest presence in the Spiders' frontcourt for years to come.


Guards:

Sr. Jalen Crutcher (DAY)- Crutcher is the first half of a Flyers duo that's on it's way to a strong A-10 tournament run. Crutcher dropped 27 against the Billikens on Tuesday.


Sr. Ibi Watson (DAY)- Finishing that Dayton duo, Watson is one of the most prolific scorers in the conference, dropping at least 10 points in every game but three this season. Watson scored 18 against the Billikens.


Jr. Dominick Welch (SBU)- Welch has been on a tear for the Bonnies, shooting 46% so far this season. While the Bonnies rely heavily on Osun Osunniyi in terms of offensive performance, Welch has been instrumental in the Bonnies quest for an at-large bid.


Rankings

Davidson, UMass, and GW all did not play this week, meaning that the most points a team can earn this week is 11.


This Week's Ranking:

  1. Dayton (11 Pts.)

  2. VCU (10 Pts.)

  3. Saint Bonaventure (9 Pts.)

  4. Richmond (8 Pts.)

  5. Duquesne (7 Pts.)

  6. URI (6 Pts.)

  7. SLU (5 Pts.)

  8. La Salle (4 Pts.)

  9. Mason (3 Pts.)

  10. Fordham (2 Pts.)

  11. St. Joe's (1 Pt.)

Season Aggregate Rankings:

  1. VCU (79 Pts.)

  2. Richmond (74 Pts.)

  3. URI (62 Pts.)

  4. Saint Bonaventure (61 Pts.)

  5. Davidson (61 Pts.)

  6. Dayton (60 Pts.)

  7. Saint Louis (53 Pts.)

  8. UMass (39 Pts.)

  9. La Salle (39 Pts.)

  10. George Mason (33 Pts.)

  11. Duquesne (31 Pts.)

  12. George Washington (29 Pts.)

  13. St. Joe's (13 Pts.)

  14. Fordham (11 Pts.)


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