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NCAA Bracket, Previews and Predictions: Vanderbilt Vs. Richmond

If you are looking for a realistic shot at the classic 5 vs. 12 upset in the 2011 NCAA Tournament bracket, then this is your game. Richmond dominated the Atlantic 10 while Vanderbilt struggled with a weak SEC schedule at times, especially teams that enjoyed cohesion much like the Spiders do. 

Check your NCAA Tournament schedule here for all of the games.

Star Watch: Balanced role definition is perhaps the most apt description for Vanderbilt. In the backcourt, Jenkins is the SEC’s leading scorer, and Brad Tinsley leads the league in assists. Big man Festus Ezeli is an efficient post player inside, and he provides that eraser presence on defense. A steady rotation of Lance Goulbourne, Steve Tchiengang, and Rod Odom provide requisite interior size support.  Jeffery Taylor is the X-factor, when he plays well the Commodores usually win.

As for the 12 seed, Richmond's dynamic duo of point guard Kevin Anderson and athletic power forward Justin Harper are high-major caliber players. Throw in the passing wizardry of point forward Dan Geriot out of the low post, and the puzzle pieces fit together well enough for the Spiders to make a run.

Prediction:  Again, defined roles and cohesion should help carry the day for the Spiders.  Vanderbilt seems like a team still in search of its identity and that's not a good place to be when facing a well coached Richmond squad that knows exactly who they are.  For that reason, the Spider's should win by five.  66 to 61.

Get your updated printable 2011 NCAA Tournament bracket.