So last night's upset call worked out pretty well, huh? Lets see what we can come up with today.
I'm not quite as firm on this pick in that I don't think I'd bet much on Richmond winning outright--I think they have a slight chance, but not anywhere near as decent as Arizona's chances to knock off Duke last night. However, the spread between the Richmond Spiders and Kansas Jayhawks is 10.5--that's waaay too high. Let me go into the reasons why:
1) Richmond runs a very slow pace.
Richmond almost always uses all of the shot clock, which is a trait that you'll often find in upset wins. The fewer possessions you use, the less a team's pure talent will matter and the more randomness can come into play. As long as the Spiders can get quality shots and keep Kansas from running the fast break against them, the Jayhawks won't have much of a chance to use their superior athletes and inside game to dominate the Spiders in the paint.
2) Richmond can shoot threes.
Of the Spiders top five players by minutes played, four of them are shooting better than 41% from long range, and they have a few reserves who can stick a three-pointer as well. Richmond can keep themselves in this game with good long-range shooting, and considering how hot they were against Morehead State and Vanderbilt, it wouldn't be a surprise if their shooting carried them into a tight game.
3) Richmond can match the Jayhawks size.
The Morris brothers are a pretty intimidating pair of players down low, but between Dan Geriot, Justin Harper, and Darrius Garrett, the Spiders have a trio that could at least bother the Jayhawks' inside shooting. I don't think they'll shut down either of the Morris, but the size of those three should be enough to keep them from dominating the game.
Like I said, I'm not quite as sure about this pick as far as Richmond winning outright goes. But 10.5 points with these factors? If gambling were legal in my state, I'd surely take that.
Be sure to pencil this latest upset pick into your printable NCAA Bracket, which I'm sure you've already downloaded from your good friend at SB Nation. You haven't done it yet? Then go, go! For the good of the city!