Courtesy: Atlantic 10 Conference

Men's Basketball Championship Begins Wednesday, VCU Set as Top Seed

By Atlantic 10 Conference

NEWPORT NEWS, Va.— VCU, which won the Atlantic 10 Conference regular season title with a 16-2 conference record, will be the No. 1 seed for next week’s A-10 Men’s Basketball Championship at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The 14-team tournament begins Wednesday with the championship final set for Sunday, March 17.

ESPN+ will air Wednesday’s first-round games while NBCSN will carry the entire second round Thursday and all four quarterfinal matchups Friday. CBS Sports Network will air the semifinals Saturday at 1:00 and 3:30 pm. The championship final is set for 1:00 pm on CBS Sports as part of their annual Selection Sunday coverage.

The Rams secured the top seed on Wednesday, their first outright A-10 regular season title. VCU shared the 2016 regular season title with Dayton and St. Bonaventure. VCU was also the first A-10 team to win 16 league games since the 2005-06 season when George Washington went 16-0 in conference play.

In addition to VCU, second-seeded Davidson (14-4), No. 3 Dayton (13-5) and No. 4 St. Bonaventure (12-6) earned byes into the quarterfinal round of the championship. VCU plays at noon on Friday, followed by St. Bonaventure at 2:30 pm. Davidson opens the evening session at 6:00 pm and Dayton will close out the quarterfinals at 8:30 pm.

Seeds five through 10 earn byes into the second round and will play Thursday on NBCSN. George Mason (11-7) is seeded fifth and will play the winner of No. 12 George Washington (4-14) and No. 13 Massachusetts (4-14) at 2:30 pm Thursday. GW and UMass will meet Wednesday in the first round at 1:00 pm on ESPN+. The Colonials earned the 12 seed by virtue of a head-to-head tiebreaker with the Minutemen.

No. 6 Saint Louis (10-8) will open play Thursday at 8:30 pm against the winner of the late first-round game between No. 11 Richmond (6-12) and No. 14 Fordham (3-15). The game between the Spiders and Rams will tip off at 3:30 pm on Wednesday on ESPN+.

Seventh-seeded Duquesne (10-8) will play 10-seeded Saint Joseph’s (6-12) at 6:00 pm on Thursday in the second round, with the winner playing No. 2 Davidson. No. 8 Rhode Island (9-9) faces No. 9 La Salle (8-10) at noon on Thursday for the right to play VCU in the quarterfinals.

Saint Louis secured the No. 6 seed over Duquesne, winning a tiebreaker by virtue of the Billikens’ win over Dayton earlier in the year. Saint Joseph’s earned the No. 10 seeding through a head-to-head tiebreaker with Richmond.

Tickets for the championship can be purchased online at TicketMaster.com.

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