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Sleeping with the Enemy: The Spiders of Richmond

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We talk Spiders, sweet potatoes, scary clowns, and more prior to the Hoyas’ next matchup.

After a weeklong Thanksgiving break, your UNDEFEATED Georgetown Hoyas will be back at it in their first road game of the season against the Richmond Spiders. For a little more about the Spiders, we reached out to Grant Labedz, who writes about Richmond and the Atlantic 10 for A10Talk. You can follow him on Twitter @GrantLabedz.

Richmond! Tell us something cool about the University or the city of Richmond that we may not know.

You might not know that T.J. Cline, Richmond’s stud center last season, is the son of Hall of Famer Nancy Lieberman. She showed up to pretty much every game to cheer on her son. We did an interview with her on A10 Talk last year.

What's the deal with the Spiders this year? Aren't they usually good?

Losing T.J. Cline and ShawnDre’ Jones hurt the Spiders a lot more than some hoped. Despite the rough start to the season, UR looked pretty good against UAB in the Cayman Islands Classic. Bottom line: it’s going to take some time for this team to rebuild; this could be a down year for Mooney’s bunch.

Chris Mooney's been helming Richmond for a long time. Why do you think he hasn't taken another gig and is he going to be on the hot seat soon?

I don’t think he’s taken another gig because this is the best one he can get… to be honest with you, “#FIREMOONEY” has been circulating around Twitter for quite some time, and I know the fanbase wants him gone. He certainly seems to be on the hot seat right now, but it’s a long season, and UR finished 3rd in the A-10 last year after a shaky start. Mooney’s going to need quite the revival though if he wants to keep his job. A 10-12th place finish in the league just isn’t going to cut it for these Spider fans.

Who is shaping up to be good in the A-10? How many teams do you think they'll send to the tourney?

It’s hard to tell. At the start of the season, it seemed like Saint Joseph’s and St. Bonaventure had a shot at at-large bids with Rhode Island as the clear favorite to win the league. Though it’s early, the A-10’s looking like more of a 1, 2 at the max, bid league this year. I’d look out for Davidson as a sleeper, and VCU is a team that always seems to be in the mix.

Who on the Spiders should Hoyas fans be especially aware of heading into Saturday's matchup?

De’Monte Buckingham is the man to pay attention to: he was the Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Year last season, and he’s already off to a hot start for Richmond. Once he gets going, he’s difficult to stop. I’d also be aware of Grant Golden; the Spiders’ anchor in the post had 26 points and 7 boards against a solid UAB team down in the Caymans.

LaVar Ball was interviewed for over 20 minutes on CNN Monday night & I wish I were kidding. Is his shtick still funny or just annoying at this point?

I haven’t been the biggest fan of LaVar Ball (who has?), but I will say this: at least he’s bringing some attention to college basketball, whether that be good or bad. I love the game more than anything, and when others are tuning in, it definitely makes it more fun. Can’t say LaVar Ball’s been helping the sport, but at least we’ll have a few more CBB fans out there? Maybe?

What is the best Thanksgiving side and why?

Sweet potato pie: because marshmallows, that’s why.

Please rank the following food offenses in terms of how sinful they are: putting peanut butter on pizza, eating a steak well-done with ketchup, dipping a Pop Tart in mayonnaise.

I actually saw something on Twitter the other day that said dipping Pop Tarts in ranch was a trend in Oklahoma? Even if that’s true, mayonnaise is 10x as heinous, so i’m taking that at #1. I’ll take a tie at #2 for the others. I may be in the minority here, but I don’t think I’d be too opposed to trying either of those things. Peanut butter on pizza might be a little much, but I’m not going to knock it until I try it. Not mayonnaise though — that’s a psychotic move.

What's the last movie you've actually seen in a theater?

I went and saw IT with my girlfriend and I was thoroughly disappointed. The movie was atrocious and really not that scary. Can’t say I’ve been making it out to movie theaters that often, and that’s part of the reason. When November rolls around, I’ll be sitting on the couch with hoops on the T.V. leading up to March.

Final score prediction?

I’ll take Richmond with a 74-70 win over Georgetown, though I think this is going to be an absolute battle. Richmond looks to be catching its stride and should have some support at home. That said, this game could go either way, and I’m looking forward to tuning in!