NCAA tournament team previews: VCU Rams
As part of its preview of the 2014 NCAA men’s basketball tournament, SI.com is taking a look at all 68 teams in the field. RPI and SOS data from realtimerpi.com. Adjusted offense and defense are from kenpom.com and measure the number of points scored and allowed per 100 possessions, and the team’s national rank. For more teams, click here.
Record: 26-8, 12-4 in Atlantic-10 conference
Adjusted offense / Adjusted defense: 107.9 (108) / 89.4 (2)
Impact player: Treveon Graham: 15.7 PPG, 6.9 RBG, 2.1 APG, .344 3PT PCT
The Case For:
VCU gets it done on both ends of the floor. The Rams finished second in the Atlantic-10 in both scoring offense (75.4 points per game) and scoring defense (64.8). VCU is especially effective on defense, where it ranked second in the country in KenPom’s adjusted defensive efficiency (89.0). The Rams gave up 67 points or fewer in each of their last seven games, including an upset of 10th-ranked Saint Louis on March 1, where the Billikens managed only 56 points.
The Case Against:
The Rams aren’t necessarily strong on the boards, where they allow their opponents to grab 36.7 rebounds per game while out-rebounding those opponents by only 1.2 boards. They also aren't a great shooting team, ranking just 247th in the country at effective field goal percentage. VCU beat three ACC teams during the season -- Virginia and league doormats Boston College and Virginia Tech -- but also lost to two power-conference teams that didn't even make the tournament in Georgetown and Florida State. Which version of the Rams will show up in the NCAAs?
SI Prediction: Lose in the second round to Stephen F. AustinView complete bracket predictions from SI.com’s panel of experts