William & Mary at Richmond FCS Football 2015 Playoffs 2nd Round Breakdown

George Hammond

William & Mary at Richmond FCS Football 2015 Playoffs 2nd Round Breakdown


William & Mary at Richmond, Saturday, Noon

These two Virginia foes are no strangers as they met just two weeks ago in the regular-season finale won by Richmond, 20-9. It was the fourth straight victory in the series for the Spiders. That Richmond victory (8-3) forced a three-way tie for the CAA title among Richmond, William & Mary and James Madison with the Spiders earning the league’s automatic qualifier. This will be the 126th meeting between the two teams with the Tribe holding a slight 61-59-5 advantage.

By virtue of that 20-9 victory two weeks ago, the Spiders received a first-round bye as one of the top eight seeds. Meanwhile, William & Mary (9-3) had to outscore Duquesne, 52-49, Saturday in a contest that was much closer and higher scoring than many expected. The Tribe had leads of 38-24 and 45-31 but just couldn’t shake the Dukes.

The scenario for the W&M-Richmond rematch should be a fairly simple one – turnovers and rushing yardage. In the first game, the Tribe, specifically quarterback Steve Cluley, had three interceptions. Entering that contest, he had thrown just five all season. In addition, William & Mary was held to 95 yards on 29 rushes. If Richmond can shut down William & Mary’s running game again, the Spiders will likely advance to the quarterfinals.

Meanwhile, Jacobi Green was a one-man wrecking crew for the Spiders against William & Mary. He rushed for 217 yards on 36 carries with one touchdown. Teammate Brian Brown added seven receptions for 101 yards and a score. Spiders’ quarterback Kyle Lauletta was 14-of-23 for 171 yards and two touchdowns.

These two are evenly matched, but lately it seems as if Richmond has the Tribe’s number. There’s no doubt William & Mary was looking past Duquesne in the opening round – and it almost cost it – but the Tribe haven’t shown they can beat Richmond at least in recent games. This could be a thriller, but the Spiders will prevail.

Projected Score: Richmond 23, William & Mary 17


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