College Basketball Odds, Picks, Futures: 2022-23 Atlantic 10 Conference Betting Preview
Photo by Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: DaRon Holmes II (Dayton)
Only two teams from the Atlantic 10 reached the 2022 NCAA tournament, but this year, the conference looks like it’s headed for major improvement.
Dayton and Saint Louis have serious returning talent, Loyola Chicago joins the league from the MVC and the hirings of Frank Martin (UMass), Archie Miller (Rhode Island) and Fran Dunphy (La Salle) give the A-10 more national buzz.
Here are the futures odds and how the league will shake out in 2022-23.
2022-23 Atlantic 10 Regular Season Futures Odds
Selected as a top-25 team in the preseason AP poll, the Flyers are looking to soar — not only to an A-10 title, but to a top-four seed in March.
Led by A-10 Player of the Year frontrunner DaRon Holmes II and a savvy point guard in Malachi Smith, Dayton has the goods to make another magical run.
Will it be a repeat of 2020? Probably not, but with all five starters back — plus the majority of the key bench minutes — Anthony Grant’s squad could push top-15 boundaries.
Saint Louis Billikens
The Billikens are absolutely loaded this season. Five of their top six performers return from last season, as does the electric Javonte Perkins, who missed 2021-22 with an ACL tear after many thought he’d capture A-10 Player of the Year honors.
Junior point guard Yuri Collins was named to the Bob Cousy Award watch list, and coach Travis Ford thinks he’s the best lead guard in the country.
Transfers Javon Pickett (Missouri), Jake Forrester (Temple) and Sincere Parker (JUCO) give SLU a deep nine-man rotation that could rival most power programs.
Defense will always be overlooked in college basketball, but the fact remains that a great defense can carry a team further than a great offense.
VCU ranked seventh nationally in KenPom’s adjusted defensive efficiency metrics in 2021-22, and there’s every indication the Rams should be fierce on this end once again in 2022-23.
The return of all-league point guard Ace Baldwin Jr. and talented forward Jamir Watkins being back from injury should lead to a vastly improved offensive product, the area that prevented last season’s squad from reaching its potential.
Conference title odds stack the Rams far below Dayton and SLU, but the real-life gap is much closer.
Loyola Chicago Ramblers
The Ramblers are the new kids on the block in the A-10. Loyola dominated the Missouri Valley the past few years and were rewarded by a step-up in conference.
Despite the uptick in competition, don’t expect this plucky group to fade into the night.
31-year-old head coach Drew Valentine is one of the brightest rising stars in the country, and he has a roster capable of competing. Senior guards Braden Norris and Marquise Kennedy lead the way.
If you’re looking to back a team outside the top three, make it this one.
Matt McKillop takes over as head coach, replacing dear old dad Bob McKillop. McKillop, the youngster, has spent 14 seasons on the Davidson bench as an assistant and also played for his father back in the mid-2000s.
He bleeds Wildcat red and should keep the always-potent Davidson offense humming.
As seems to be the trend at the top of the A-10, Davidson is led by a savvy upperclassman point guard. Former Michigan State transfer Foster Loyer looks to improve upon his 16.1 points per game average from last season.
George Mason Patriots
Kim English made quite the splash in the non-conference of his first season. George Mason upended Maryland on the road, sending shockwaves through the college basketball landscape.
Though the Patriots couldn’t keep the momentum train chugging in A-10 play, English returns a dangerous roster led by A-10 Player of the Year candidate Josh Oduro.
There may not be a more talented top four in the league than Mason’s Oduro, Victor Bailey, Davonte Gaines and DeVon Cooper.
The Spiders just sneak into this group thanks to the man roaming the sidelines. Chris Mooney, the dean of the A-10, enters his 18th season as the longest-tenured coach in the league.
His squad lost a ton of production from last season, a concern given the nature of Mooney’s Princeton-style offense. But Player of the Year contender Tyler Burton is back to lead the charge.
Skilled big man Neal Quinn will be the new initiator at the top of the Richmond attack, but questions remain as to how the supporting cast will fill the giant shoes left behind by program greats Jacob Gilyard and Grant Golden.
UMass and Rhode Island made arguably the two best hires of the offseason, bringing in Frank Martin and Archie Miller, respectively.
With seismic coaching upgrades and considerable talent in tow, both programs have dark horse potential to finish near the top of the A-10 standings.
Rhode Island Rams
For URI, remember the name Brandon Weston, a Seton Hall transfer and former top-100 recruit who has yet to see the floor.
Point guard Brayon Freeman, formerly of George Washington, will also look to put his name right up there with the best guards in the league.
Martin brought mass with him to UMass in the form of center Wildens Leveque and forward Ta’Quan Woodley. He also added talented scorers Matt Cross (Louisville) and Rahsool Diggins (UConn) to pair with returning guards Noah Fernandes and TJ Weeks Jr.
With so much incoming talent and a coach that made a Final Four with freaking South Carolina, the Minutemen are the best flier bet on the board.
Work to Do
St. Bonaventure Bonnies
No team in the country lost more production than the Bonnies this offseason. Head coach Mark Schmidt is a wizard with the clipboard, but even he might struggle out of the gates replacing 99.7% of his minutes.
Keith Dambrot is looking to prove last season was simply a blip on the radar of an otherwise successful tenure at Duquesne. His Dukes went 1-16 in the A-10 last year after three straight seasons of .500 or better performances.
Dambrot has enough talent to make things interesting in the middle of the pack, but it would take a miracle for his squad to fly to the top of the standings.
Saint Joseph’s Hawks
Few teams have suffered the level of injury annoyances as the Saint Joe’s Hawks have during Bill Lange’s three-year tenure.
With a fully healthy squad led by breakout candidate Erik Reynolds II, Lange should have his best team in his brief history on Hawk Hill.
Keep your eyes on freshman point guard Christian Winborne — he’s a ball of energy and the likely frontrunner for A-10 Rookie of the Year honors.
Fordham looks to ride the momentum of its best A-10 finish since 2016. There’s just one problem: head coach Kyle Neptune will no longer be the captain of the ship after accepting the coveted Villanova job following Jay Wright’s shocking retirement.
Neptune’s right-hand man Keith Urgo slides over into the hot seat. Can he keep the good times rolling in Rose Hill Gym?
George Washington Colonials
GW fired Jamion Christian after three seasons of disappointing results. In his stead steps Chris Caputo, a long-time Jim Larranaga assistant at both George Mason and Miami (FL).
The Caputo hiring was met with positive response, but he’ll have an uphill battle in year one.
A talented twosome in the backcourt leads an otherwise shallow guard group.
La Salle Explorers
La Salle made one of the more eyebrow raising hires of the 2022 offseason. 73-year old Fran Dunphy steps back onto the court after a brief stint as the athletic director for Temple.
Dunphy is a certified legend, but he hasn’t coached since 2019. Can he lead an Explorers squad that has a few decent pieces to a surprise run up the A-10 standings? If anyone can do it, it might be him.