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Men's College Basketball
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Louisiana State at VCU
When: 6:00 PM ET, Wednesday, November 13, 2019
Where: Stuart C. Siegel Center, Richmond, Virginia

Will Wade returns to the place where he won 51 games and made a pair of NCAA Tournaments in two seasons as coach when 24th-ranked LSU pays a visit to VCU for a non-conference game Wednesday night. Wade was 51-20 at VCU from 2015-17 before taking the job in Baton Rouge, La. where he helped the Tigers win their first SEC regular-season title since 2009 last season.

“VCU is a great place,” Wade told reporters. “As a coach you travel around a lot. That’s the longest I’ve been in one place. I was there four years as an assistant. I was there two years as the head coach. They’ve got tremendous fans. … It will be rowdy, but it should be fun.” LSU held Bowling Green to 32 percent shooting from the field to win its opener 88-79 on Friday as Wade blended some newcomers in with holdovers such as sophomore guard Javonte Smart, who finished with 21 points, a career-high eight rebounds and five assists. The Rams, who just missed making the top 25 in the preseason USA Today coaches poll, has an experienced team that knocked off St. Francis (Pa.) by 14 points in its opener before edging North Texas 59-56 on Friday. “That was a grind,” VCU coach Mike Rhoades told reporters Friday. “It was a good test for us even though when we got the lead we couldn’t keep it.”

TV: 6 p.m. ET, ESPN2

ABOUT LSU (1-0): Smart, who averaged 11.1 points and 3.3 rebounds last season, drained 3-of-5 from beyond the arc in the opener and told reporters: “They knew I like to drive the ball. I have been working hard on being consistent with my 3-pointer and it paid off.” Sophomore forward Emmitt Williams poured in 21 points on 5-of-9 shooting from the field after averaging seven in 2018-19 and senior guard Skylar Mays scored 18 while adding eight boards along with three assists against Bowling Green. Much is expected from 6-9 freshman forward Trendon Watford, who registered 10 points and seven rebounds Friday.

ABOUT VCU (2-0): The Rams return all four of their double-figure scorers from last season’s team, which went 25-8 and reached the NCAA Tournament, and have been balanced in the first two contests of 2019-20. De’Riante Jenkins (14 points, two steals) has led the way along with fellow senior guard Marcus Evans (12.5 points, 2.5 assists) while senior forward Issac Vann has scored 16 total in the first two games. Junior forward Marcus Santos-Silva had 21 points and 18 boards in the season opener before being held to three points on 1-of-3 shooting in 27 minutes along with seven boards versus North Texas.

TIP-INS

1. LSU sophomore F Darius Days, who averaged 5.3 points last season, scored 13 on 5-of-8 shooting in 21 minutes Friday.

2. VCU senior G Mike’L Simms is just 2-of-9 from the field in the first two games, but has just one turnover in 49 total minutes.

3. Mays played his 100th game in a Tigers uniform Friday and is 15 assists from 300 for his career.

PREDICTION: LSU 78, VCU 71
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Neutral Day Night Conf
Louisiana State 1-0 W1 1-0 0-0 0-0 0-0 1-0 0-0
VCU 2-0 W2 2-0 0-0 0-0 0-0 2-0 0-0
Last Meeting
Louisiana State VCU
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
11/25/16 VCU 85 LSU 74 74 28 49.1 85 30 49.2
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Louisiana State A. Blakeney 14 54.5 2
VCU J. Lewis 19 54.5 4
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Louisiana State D. Reath 5 0 5
VCU J. Tillman 8 4 4
Assists Player  
Louisiana State J. Patterson 7
VCU J. Lewis 9
Season
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Louisiana State J. Smart 21 41.7 8
VCU D. Jenkins 28 56.2 8
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Louisiana State S. Mays 8 1 7
VCU M. Santos-Silva 25 10 15
Assists Player  
Louisiana State J. Smart 5
VCU M. Santos-Silva 6
Quickchart Matchup
blue bar Louisiana State Off vs  red bar VCU Defense
blue bar 88.0 Points For
red bar 57.0 Points Against
blue bar 47.4 FG%
red bar 35.9 FG%
blue bar 44.0 Reb
red bar 30.5 Reb
red bar VCU Off vs  blue bar Louisiana State Defense
red bar 65.5 Points For
blue bar 79.0 Points Against
red bar 43.6 FG%
blue bar 32.0 FG%
red bar 30.5 Reb
blue bar 39.0 Reb