Richmond 2014 FCS Football Playoff Capsule

Richmond Spiders


Despite some injuries, Richmond put together a very good season. The Spiders played New Hampshire tough back in September, but that loss put them at 2-2 on the year. After that, the Spiders reeled off five wins in a row, including an impressive 10-9 victory over Villanova. But a couple losses to Maine and James Madison set up what was basically a playoff play-in game against William & Mary. Richmond won that game 34-20 to finish the year 8-4 and reach the playoff for the first time since 2009.

2014 Record: 8-4, 5-3
Coach: Danny Rocco

Big Wins: 11/1 Villanova (10-9), 11/22 at William & Mary (34-20)
Bad Losses: 11/8 at Maine (20-33), 11/15 James Madison (20-55)

This team is all about the passing game. Michael Strauss missed four games, but still managed to throw for 2,202 yards and 16 touchdowns. He came back for the November 15th contest against James Madison and had his worst outing of the year. In fact, three of his seven interceptions came against the Dukes. But against William & Mary, Strauss appeared to be back in form, throwing for 291 yards and two touchdowns. Reggie Diggs, Brian Brown and Rashad Ponder are Strauss’ favorite targets. Yet, Richmond will spread the ball around and nine different players have caught at least one touchdown pass. Amazingly, that does not include Ponder and his 56 catches. While the Spiders get most of their offense through the air, Seth Fisher and Jacobi Green are dangerous enough running backs who can pick up some yards when the opposition drops too many players out of the box.

On paper, the biggest problem with this team is turnovers. However, their terrible turnover margin is a bit misleading. Strauss has thrown just seven interceptions, but backup Michael Rocco threw 11. Against Maine, Rocco threw four interceptions and Richmond had no chance to overcome all of those mistakes. It would be helpful if the defense could help make up for some of those turnovers. The team forced just 19 turnovers on the year. With Strauss back to his old efficient ways, the defense may not have to force too many turnovers in order to win a game or two.

Statistical Leaders:
Rushing: Seth Fisher, RB, 717 yards
Passing: Michael Strauss, QB, 2,202 yards
Receiving: Reggie Diggs, WR, 885 yards
Tackles: Eric Wright, LB, 82
Sacks: Justin Williamson, DL, 7.0
Interceptions: Ayo Ogunniyi, DB, 3; Aaron Roane, LB, 3

2014 Team Stats:
Rushing Offense: 150.9 (79th in nation, 8th in conference)
Passing Offense: 309.2 (9, 1)
Total Offense: 460.1 (23, 4)
Scoring Offense: 30.9 (40, 4)
Rushing Defense: 130.4 (25, 3)
Pass Defense: 202.8 (50, 5)
Total Defense: 333.2 (25, 3)
Scoring Defense: 25.0 (54, 7)
Turnover Margin: -1.55 (118, 11)
Sacks: 1.82 (69, 10)
Sacks Allowed: 1.00 (11, 1)

Recent Playoff Appearances:
2009    First Round    Defeated Elon
2009    Quarterfinals    Lost to Appalachian State
2008    First Round    Defeated Eastern Kentucky
2008    Quarterfinals    Defeated Appalachian State
2008    Semifinals    Defeated Northern Iowa
2008    Championship    Defeated Montana
2007    First Round    Defeated Eastern Kentucky
2007    Quarterfinals    Defeated Wofford
2007    Semifinals    Lost to Appalachian State
2005    First Round    Defeated Hampton
2005    Quarterfinals    Lost to Furman
2000    First Round    Defeated Youngstown State
2000    Quarterfinals    Lost to Montana
1998    First Round    Lost to Lehigh
1987    First Round    Lost to Appalachian State
1984    First Round    Defeated Boston University
1984    Quarterfinals    Lost to Rhode Island
1984    Quarterfinals    Lost to Rhode Island

*all team stats through 11/15


Playoff Central