There are a slew of weight-bearing games in DII this weekend, with a pair of ranked matchups.
The most intriguing pits No. 20 Saint Louis University against second-ranked Lindenwood. The Lions’ score lines indicate they’ve gone untested this season, despite playing a pair of DII men’s clubs and a pair of D1-AA teams.
If SLU, defending West champs, can hold Lindenwood to, say, 40 points, then perhaps a chink will appear in the Lions’ armor.
The other ranked match features Northern Colorado and the Colorado School of the Mines. UNC has owned this matchup lately, and though we at RUGBYMag have caught some flack for ranking Mines, their recent demolition of New Mexico warrants some attention.
The Eastern Rockies have just one bid to the West playoffs, so this match will go a long way in determining either team’s spring.
There are a few games that only become big if an upset happens, like if No. 8 Mary Washington falls to James Madison, Radford is felled by VMI or Utah Valley loses to Idaho State.
The upset most likely to happen? Probably Idaho State over Utah Valley. The Bengals were the only team to knock off the Wolverines last fall, and their talent is usually enough to keep them in most contests. Don’t sleep on James Madison, either.
Every week is a big week capable of an upset or two in New England. NERFU is probably the most competitive league, top to bottom, in the country.
No. 15 Coast Guard, No. 16 Boston and No. 17 URI are all 2-1, and though their opponents, Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont, respectively, are a combined 2-6, none have a negative point differential of more than 19.
It’s hard to draw any early conclusions about how New England will shake out prior to the actual end of the season.
Slate of games
#4 UNC vs. #13 Mines
UNM vs. Mesa
Holy Cross @ #17 URI
#15 Coast Guard @ Maine
#16 Boston @ UNH
Norwich @ Vermont
#14 UNCW vs. Elon
Idaho State vs. #5 UVU
#8 Mary Washington vs. James Madison
#21 Radford vs. VMI
UW Stevens Point vs. Marquette
#1 UW Whitewater vs. N. Michigan
UW Lacrosse vs. #18 UW Milwaukee
St. Johns vs. Mankato
St. Cloud vs. Winona
Minn. Duluth vs. NDSU
#20 SLU vs. #2 Lindenwood
#7 Towson vs. St. Mary's
#22 Georgetown vs. Catholic
Hofstra vs. #23 Marist
Sacred Heart vs. #25 William Paterson
New Paltz vs. Fairfield
Vassar vs. Seton Hall