The Richmond Spiders Are Coming To The Forks

UND now knows who their opponent will be on Saturday.  The heavily favored Richmond Spiders took care of over-matched North Carolina A&T by a score of 39-10 to advance in the FCS playoffs.

Richmond put up 491 yards of offense and held A&T to 226 total yards.  Head Coach Danny Rocco surprised everyone by pulling the redshirt off sophomore QB Kevin Johnson and starting him.  Johnson played sparingly last year but was going to sit this season out to save a year.  That plan changed when their star QB Kyle Lauletta went down with a knee injury last week.

Johnson looked very polished and composed for it being his first collegiate start in Richmond’s spread offense.  He ended the day 15-23 for 315 yards and 1 TD.  Johnson throws an accurate, tight spiral.  Can see why Rocco wanted to save him for next year.

The Richmond defense, who is missing several players due to injury, looked very sound in their 3-3-5 scheme.  They have a solid secondary and overall look the part of a very good defense.

The Spiders have playoff experience.  They went 2-1 last year, losing to NDSU in the semi-finals.

2015 FCS Playoffs
Sat, Dec 05 William & Mary,  Robins Stadium, Richmond, Va.    W, 48-13
Fri, Dec 11 Illinois State,  Normal, Ill.                                                 W, 39-27
Fri, Dec 18 North Dakota State,  Fargo, N.D.                                     L, 33-7

2014 FCS Playoffs
Sat, Nov 29  Morgan State,  Robins Stadium, Richmond, Va.      W, 46-24
Sat, Dec 06  Coastal Carolina,  Conway, S.C.                                     L, 36-15

Here are the Richmond offensive & defensive statistics and their rank in the CAA.

Richmond Offense (CAA Rank-12 Teams)

SCORING OFFENSE          G   TD  XP 2XP DXP  FG Saf  Pts   Avg
--------------------------------------------------------------
1. James Madison....... 11   71  67   1   0  10   0  525  47.7
2. Richmond............ 12   44  39   1   0  23   0  374  31.2
RUSHING OFFENSE          G    Att   Yds   Avg  TD  Yds/G
--------------------------------------------------------
1. James Madison....... 11    553  3268   5.9  42  297.1
9. Richmond............ 12    430  1801   4.2  17  150.1
PASS OFFENSE             G   Att  Cmp Int  Pct.  Yds  Avg TD Yds/G
------------------------------------------------------------------
1. Richmond............ 12   382  237  10  62.0 3355  8.8 25 279.6
2. James Madison....... 11   261  185   6  70.9 2474  9.5 22 224.9
TOTAL OFFENSE            G  Rush Pass Plays Yards Avg/P TD Yds/G
----------------------------------------------------------------
1. James Madison....... 11  3268 2474   814  5742   7.1 64 522.0
2. Richmond............ 12  1801 3355   812  5156   6.3 42 429.7
3RD-DN CONVERSIONS       G  Conv  Att   Pct
-------------------------------------------
1. James Madison....... 11    76  139  54.7
2. Richmond............ 12    74  169  43.8
FIELD GOALS              G  Made  Att    Pct
--------------------------------------------
1. Richmond............ 12    23   26   .885
2. Elon................ 11    12   14   .857
TIME OF POSSESSION       G  Total Time   Avg/G
----------------------------------------------
1. Villanova........... 12     394:45    32:53
2. Richmond............ 12     385:22    32:06

The Richmond offensive numbers are a bit skewed due to the fact that Lauletta ran the show all year. They liked to hit big plays through the air and that may change with Johnson at the helm.

One number that is very impressive is their 43.8% third-down conversion rate. UND will need to win that battle on Saturday.

Richmond averages 32 minutes of possession per game. UND averages 34 minutes. Something has to give.

Richmond’s punting game appears to be pretty average. They have also struggled on kickoff coverage, which bodes well for John Santiago.

Richmond Defense (CAA Rank-12 Teams)

SCORING DEFENSE          G   TD  XP 2XP DXP  FG Saf  Pts   Avg
--------------------------------------------------------------
1. Villanova........... 12   24  21   1   0   6   0  185  15.4
5. Richmond............ 12   34  30   1   0  10   0  266  22.2
RUSHING DEFENSE          G  Rushes  Yards  Avg.  TD  Yds/G
----------------------------------------------------------
1. Villanova........... 12    372   1132   3.0   11   94.3
5. Richmond............ 12    439   1788   4.1   21  149.0
PASS DEFENSE             G   Att  Cmp Int  Pct.  Yds  Avg TD Yds/G
------------------------------------------------------------------
1. William & Mary...... 11   282  155  12  55.0 1696  6.0  7 154.2
2. Richmond............ 12   299  157  16  52.5 1875  6.3 11 156.2
TOTAL DEFENSE            G  Rush Pass Plys Yards  Avg  TD Yds/G
---------------------------------------------------------------
1. Villanova........... 12  1132 2048  716  3180  4.4  20 265.0
3. Richmond............ 12  1788 1875  738  3663  5.0  32 305.2
SACKS BY                 G  Sacks Yards
---------------------------------------
1. Villanova........... 12     30   213
5. Richmond............ 12     21   152
SACKS AGAINST            G  Sacks Yards
---------------------------------------
1. James Madison....... 11      9    39
8. Richmond............ 12     21   148
PUNTING                  G  No. Yards Avg/P   PR  Avg  TB Net/P
---------------------------------------------------------------
1. Towson.............. 11   43  1908  44.4  130  3.0   2  40.4
10.Richmond............ 12   48  1817  37.9  107  2.2   1  35.2
                           |--Gained--||---Lost---|
TURNOVER MARGIN          G  Fum Int Tot Fum Int Tot Mar  Per/G
--------------------------------------------------------------
1. Albany.............. 11   15  17  32   5  11  16 +16   1.45
3. Richmond............ 12   11  16  27   5  10  15 +12   1.00
KICKOFF COVERAGE         G  No. Yards   Avg  Retn  TB NetAvg
------------------------------------------------------------
1. James Madison....... 11   92  5680  61.7  1268  26   40.9
12.Richmond............ 12   74  3947  53.3  1497   2   32.4

Feature Image courtesy of Richmond Athletics.

8 Responses

  1. Siouxhog71

    I was at the JMU/Richmond game this year and last. They have one great WR in particular, like playing on Sunday good. But their defense got torched both years, especially this year. They do not play defense out east like they do in the midwest. My inclincation is that they will score a minimum of 24 points and it will come down to our offense and special teams scoring enough points to beat them. The offense needs to be on cue and score at least 30 IMHO. I’m praying they can continue to squeak out enough offensive production to be able to win another one. It would be nice if some of that production could come in the first half rather than waiting until the end!

    1. Let’s hope UND has the physical advantage up front. That would be a big part of winning this game, no doubt.

      UND’s kickoff return team will play a big part in this game.

  2. Sioux46

    a. Seeing that the Big Sky has laid an egg, so far, in these playoffs and we didn’t set the world on fire over the last month are you at all concerned about this game?

    b. We need a fast start Saturday, something that we haven’t been able to do much this year. The 3 weeks off, while helping our health, could result in a case of rust that could hamper the fast start. How have practices been?

    c. Getting injured players back is vital to our success, how is the injury report looking?

    1. Siouxhog71

      Couldn’t agree more. I feel like this could go as the season as, start slow, crawl back and win a nailbiter. Or start slow and because they are a better team, never really be able get back into the game. Obviously I’d love to see them start fast and finish strong, but that’s not the way the year has gone. Getting Stanly, Rich and having a close to 100% Studsrud is key IMHO.

    1. Eric

      Unfortunately it sounds like Stockwell may be done for the year – from a pretty good source. However, sometimes these kids will try to play through anything, so you never do know. But don’t be surprised to see Bryce Blair manning the right side and Coe manning the left side. What an awesome addition Coe has been…….

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