Rhode Island Men's Basketball 2020 NCAA Tournament Capsule


Rhode Island Rams

Atlantic 10 (21-9, 13-5)

During Coach David Cox’s first season leading the program last year, the Rams missed out on the NCAA Tournament after two straight trips to the round of 32. But now the Rams are back and will look to recapture a bit of that recent tournament success. Behind a strong defense and an aggressive offense, URI has the tools to pull off a surprise.
Big Wins: 12/6 Providence (75-61), 12/21 Western Kentucky (86-82), 1/22 Duquesne (77-55)
Bad Losses: 1/2 at Brown (75-85), 2/22 at Davidson (75-77), 3/1 St. Louis (62-72)
Coach: David Cox
Why They Can Surprise:
Rhode Island plays solid defense. They allow the opposition to shoot just 29.7 percent from beyond the arc. This is also a team that can take care of the ball and force plenty of turnovers and much of that is due to the outstanding play of Fatts Russell. The junior guard dishes out 4.6 assists per game and averages an amazing 2.9 steals per contest. As if that was not enough, Russell also tallies 18.8 points per game. The backcourt also boasts Jeff Dowtin and Tyrese Martin. Dowtin is a great secondary ballhandler, while Martin is 6-6 and very productive on the glass. Cyril Langevine handles much of the rebound though. The 6-8 senior averages 10.1 points and 10.3 rebounds.
Why They Can Disappoint:
Even though this group has a lot of perimeter talent, they are not much of an outside shooting team. Russell is the most prolific option and Dowtin and Martin can at least be outside shooting threats, but Coach Cox cannot rely on his team scoring much from beyond the arc. That has not stopped the Rams from putting up quite a few points, but if they need to score in a hurry, it could prove problematic. And in the NCAA Tournament against tougher competition than they have seen for most of this season, they will need to score in bunches on occasion to stay in the game.
Probable Starters:
Fatts Russell, Junior, Guard, 18.8 ppg, 4.6 apg, 2.9 spg
Jeff Dowtin, Senior, Guard, 13.9 ppg, 3.2 apg
Tyrese Martin, Sophomore, Guard, 12.8 ppg, 1.1 apg, 7.1 rpg
Jermaine Harris, Sophomore, Forward, 5.3 ppg, 3.0 rpg
Cyril Langevine, Senior, Forward, 10.1 ppg, 10.3 rpg, 1.9 rpg
Key Role Players:
Antwan Walker, Sophomore, Forward, 5.3 ppg, 3.5 rpg
Mekhi Long, Freshman, Forward, 3.1 ppg, 2.3 rpg
Jacob Toppin, Freshman, Forward, 5.1 ppg, 3.9 rpg
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 73.3 (111th in nation, 3rd in conference)
Scoring Defense: 68.9 (162, 10)
Field-Goal Percentage: 42.3 (251, 10)
Field-Goal Defense: 41.8 (110, 6)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 5.7 (305, 13)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 31.5 (273, 12)
Free-Throw Percentage: 67.6 (280, 11)
Rebound Margin: 0.6 (164, 5)
Assists Per Game: 12.6 (221, 10)
Turnovers Per Game: 11.8 (60, 4)
Recent Postseason Appearances:
2018NCAARound of 64 win over Oklahoma
2018NCAARound of 32 loss to Duke
2017NCAARound of 64 win over Creighton
2017NCAARound of 32 loss to Oregon
2015NITFirst Round win over Iona
2015NITSecond Round loss to Stanford
2011CBIFirst Round win over Miami of Ohio
2011CBISecond Round loss to UCF
2010NITFirst Round win over Northwestern
2010NITSecond Round win over Nevada
2010NITQuarterfinal win over Virginia Tech
2010NITSemifinal loss to North Carolina
2009NITFirst Round win over Niagara
2009NITSecond Round loss to Penn State
2008NITFirst Round loss to Creighton
2004NITOpening Round win over Boston Univ
2004NITFirst Round loss to West Virginia
*all team stats through 3/8