Looking Into The Crystal Ball: Rider Broncs @ Virginia Cavaliers

Jesse KramerCorrespondent INovember 19, 2009

Tonight, at 7 PM, the Rider Broncs will battle the Virginia Cavaliers in Charlottesville, Virginia. 

Rider caught the nation's attention when they upset Mississippi State, ranked 19th in the country, in the season opener for both teams. Although Mississippi State was without Renardo Sidney and John Riek, Rider still was able to control the rest of a good Mississippi State team for the whole game.

Rider then went on to defeat Lehigh by 16 points in their next game, leading them to a 2-0 start to their season.

The Virginia Cavaliers defeated Longwood by 13 in their season opener, and then lost at South Florida. They are 1-1 going into tonight's game.

Tonight, Rider will have the edge on Virginia. They have averaged 39 rebounds a game, out-rebounding their opponent by four rebounds a game. Virginia has averaged 30 rebounds a game, also out-rebounding their opponent by four.

Despite outrebounding their opponents by the same amount, Rider will have the edge in rebounding. They have more players who have the ability to grab a lot of boards.

Virginia has only one player averaging more than four rebounds a game, while Rider has three players with more than five.

Rider will put a lot of defensive pressure on Virginia. They have averaged over seven steals a game. Virginia does not have extraordinary ball control, and Rider will be able to get some early steals and score off the fast break before Virginia will figure out a way to get by the pressure.

Lastly, Rider's ability to score is simply better than Virginia's.

Rider has a 3% edge to field goal shooting.

The main shooting number is Rider's ability to score from beyond the arc. They are shooting an outstanding 57.8% from three point range. 

Lastly, Rider has a balanced scoring attack. They have four scorers averaging in double digits, with Novar Gadson leading the way with 20.5. Patrick Mansell and Jhamar Youngblood are also averaging 7.5 and 6.5 respectively.

Virginia will put up a good fight and stay close the whole way, but Rider's ability to score will allow them to stay in control the whole game and move to 3-0.