A-10 Power Rankings – MBB: Week of 2/5

The Atlantic 10: a conference filled to the brim with buzzer beater finishes, high intensity play and paradoxical upsets.

Every week, The Good Five Cent Cigar sports staff will vote on these teams to generate a power ranking of the conference’s basketball programs.

Here are the men’s basketball rankings as of Feb. 5:

15th Place: St. Louis University Billikens (8-14 Overall) (1-8 A-10) (-)

With their six-game losing streak serving as the longest slide in the A-10, the conference’s most westbound team also doubles as the last place member of the power rankings.

Back-to-back losses this past week against Loyola University Chicago (77-62) and Fordham University (67-65) kept the Billikens from making any further progress up the rankings.

14th Place: La Salle University Explorers (11-11 Overall) (2-7 A-10) (-)

Even if you barely trail in the end, a loss is a loss. That was the story for the Explorers when they dropped a close 88-82 game to a much more competitive St. Joseph’s University team.

Compounding that with a 71-69 loss to a struggling University of Rhode Island squad, this week sees La Salle also with no advancement in the rankings.

13th Place: Davidson College Wildcats (12-9 Overall) (2-6 A-10) (-)

Davidson was blanked this past week in a 63-58 loss to Virginia Commonwealth University to go along with a 76-63 defeat by Loyola Chicago. The Wildcats still are in search of a win against a top-half opponent in the A-10.

12th Place: University of Rhode Island Rams (10-12 Overall) (4-5 A-10) (-)

After playing hosts in three of their last four contests, disappointment filled Kingston when the Rams exited the stretch with a 1-3 record, dropping a bout with Duquesne University 85-71 after a relieving 71-69 win against La Salle.

Rhode Island, who have lost five of their last six, are in desperate need of a buoy as they try to weather the storm of conference play.

11th Place: Duquesne Dukes (13-8 Overall) (3-5 A-10) (-)

The Dukes, whose four-game winning streak is the best in the A-10, concluded a rather unorthodox week in the win column.

Duquesne collected the first of their two-win week when they played an out of conference game against Chicago State University in which they were victorious 65-60. Concluding the week with an 86-71 flattening of Rhode Island, the Dukes might just be a team to watch out for come March.

10th Place: George Washington University Revolutionaries (14-7 Overall) (3-5 A-10) (-1)

The Revolutionaries slide down the conference continued this past week with a loss to nationally ranked #21 University of Dayton by a final tally of 83-61.

While Dayton has displayed dominance over a large number of teams this season, that loss marked the fourth straight for George Washington University, making a return to the win column just that much more pressing.

9th Place: Fordham University Rams (10-12 Overall) (4-5 A-10) (+1)

A 67-65 win over last place Saint Louis University seemed like a consolation prize after an 83-69 thumping from the University of Richmond earlier in the week.

The Rams have lost five of their last six, and in order to possibly accomplish something in March, the turnaround for Brooklyn has to begin now.

8th Place: George Mason University Patriots (15-7 Overall) (4-5 A-10) (-3)

Riding high from a massive win over Rhode Island, George Mason University was met this week with consecutive one-possession losses to St. Joes (75-73) and the University of Massachusetts (66-65). The performances left the Patriots with a flat tire.

7th Place: St. Bonaventure University Bonnies (13-8 Overall) (4-5 A-10) (-1)

Although its conclusion was a part of the losing column, St. Bonaventure University put together a rather solid week: first, a 67-62 upset win over VCU, followed by almost knocking off the top team on the road, but falling short 76-71 against Dayton.

If results like these can become a constant, the Bonnies could make noise on the south end of their state come tournament time.

6th Place: University of Massachusetts Minutemen (14-7 Overall) (5-4 A-10) (+2)

Since his return from injury, fourth-year forward Matt Cross has started in two games and UMass is 2-0 in those contests. Coincidence? Possibly.

With Cross back, a nail-biting 66-65 victory over George Mason served as the closer result of the week after a previous 84-73 toppling of Saint Louis.

5th Place: St. Joseph’s University Hawks (15-7 Overall) (5-4 A-10) (+2)

Even though they were narrow, back-to-back wins this week for St. Joes has moved the Hawks into the top five this week.

A 75-73 victory over George Mason served as the initial strike, and an 88-82 topping of La Salle complimented it well, serving as the latest addition to a turnaround of a conference season for the Hawks. They’ve won five of their last six and are one of the hottest teams in the conference after starting A-10 play 0-3.

4th Place: Loyola University Chicago Ramblers (15-7 Overall) (7-2 A-10) (-)

Despite the fact that the opposition was not the strongest, the Ramblers were able to take care of business against Saint Louis and Davidson College this past week, besting the Billikens 77-62 before defeating the Wildcats 76-63.

While the lack of talent on the other end prevented the Ramblers from any advancement, their success this past week kept them in the top five.

3rd Place: Virginia Commonwealth University Rams (14-8 Overall) (6-3 A-10) (-)

Although their week began with a 67-62 loss on the road to a home-dominant St. Bonaventure squad, a bounce back 63-52 upset win over Richmond knocked the top team in the A-10 down a spot on the podium.

The Rams are red hot, winning 10 of their last 13. If this consistent performance can continue, VCU may make a deep run in Brooklyn in five weeks.

2nd Place: University of Richmond Spiders (16-6 Overall) (8-1 A-10) (-1)

They say nobody is perfect, and a loss for Richmond on Saturday proved that when the Spiders fell to VCU 63-52. The loss was marked the first for Richmond in A-10 play this season and snapped an 11-game winning streak.

Regardless of the conclusion of the week, an 83-69 victory versus Fordham earlier in the week softened the blow on Saturday slightly.

1st Place: #18 University of Dayton Flyers (18-3 Overall) (8-1 A-10) (+1)

The Dayton Flyers, winners of 17 of the last 19 games and the A-10’s only nationally ranked program, found themselves back into the top spot in the standings and the power rankings with two wins and a bit of help.

Even though Richmond’s loss to VCU allowed the leap back up, it was an 83-61 win over George Washington and a 76-71 victory vs. Saint Bonaventure that created the opportunity to bounce back into the highly-touted first place spot in the Atlantic 10.