RICHMOND- It hasn’t happened since 2000, and it came with a thunderous blow.
A four game losing streak is official for the VCU Rams after their humiliating 80-62 defeat to the Saint Louis Billikens.
The Rams are now 17-10 (7-6 in A-10) while Saint Louis moves to 19-8 (8-6 in A-10).
Fans couldn’t muster but a few words to describe just how this season has spiraled downwards since their victory over Davidson when they had an 83% chance to make the NCAA Tournament.
The Rams now have a less than 30% chance and considering the proud stature of these players, the NIT would not be in consideration.
“It’s not good”, Jishnu Purihella said. “It’s not good at all”.
Javonte Perkins led the Billikens in scoring with 25 points on 8-11 shooting. Hassahn French had 18 points and 4 players recorded over 10 points.
Jordan Goodwin led the Billikens with 10 rebounds.
The defending A-10 champions led 41-27 at the half and proceeded to shoot 57.1% from the field while VCU shot only 40% from the field.
Marcus Santos-Silva led the team with 11 points. De’Riante Jenkins has 10 while every Ram player on the roster except for Corey Douglas had at least 1 point.
VCU hit 28% from 3 on 25 shots. Saint Louis went 44% on 9 shots. The Rams were also out-rebounded 41-26.
“Being a fan since 2008, this is the worst playing and team cohesion”, Daniel Puryear said.
Fans watching on television were appalled by the style of play as the preseason favorites resembled the Washington Generals compared to the Saint Louis Globetrotters.
In the 1st half, VCU starred strong thanks to two early three pointers by Jenkins but would shoot 37% from the field while having 8 fouls and 7 turnovers.
Saint Louis meanwhile, cruised through the first half going 58.1% in FG and 66.7% from beyond the arc.
The second half proved to be more of the same as VCU could not shake their rust.
Combine that with Marcus Evans receiving both a technical and a flagrant foul on the same play, giving Saint Louis many free throw opportunities.
Speaking of FT, the ice turned even colder. 57% FT shooting. For every make there would be multiple misses.
As mentioned previously, the recipe for success is a complimentary scheme of both excelling offense and intense defense. Against Saint Louis, neither showed up for VCU.
VCU also seemed to only take shots outside of the paint as opposed to the Billikens outscored them in the paint, 48-22. The Billikens also assisted on 21 field goals, compared to VCU’s 10 assists.
“It’s just pathetic”, Kris Gordon said. “So many expectations and ultimately, a major letdown”.
The Rams currently sit at 8th, which barely gives them a bye game in the A-10 tournament set to top off in 3 weeks.
3 out of the last four losses shows the Rams lack of response to an oppositions run.
Head Coach Mike Rhoades said following the George Mason loss that if VCU didn’t fix themselves up, every team they would play after would “crush them”.
Safe to say, those words have come true as VCU, since the Mason loss, has been outscored 223-182 in their last three games including their 5-point loss to Dayton. A 41 point difference.
There is absolutely nothing left except to win the A-10 tournament if VCU wishes to participate in March Madness.
The chances were there and just like the recent snow in Richmond, it passed by without the opportunity being seized.
VCU’s next game is on the road against star guard Tre Mitchell and the University of Massachusetts on February 26 @ 7pm on MASN.