Flyers and Raiders Schedule Not Great; Bring Back the Gem City Jam

The Dayton Flyers and Wright State Raiders men’s basketball teams both released their upcoming schedule last month for the 2009-2010 season.  This is the link to the Dayton Flyers schedule and the Wright State Raiders basketball schedule.  Both of their schedules are pretty mediocre. 

I don’t understand why the two Dayton area teams don’t schedule to play each other annually.  The Dayton Flyers and Wright State Raiders women’s basketball teams have scheduled each other this season.  In the last few seasons, they both have scheduled the Miami Redhawks, another local area team.  In the city of Cincinnati, Xavier and UC always have a fierce rivalry every season in the annual Crosstown Shootout.  Wright State and Dayton should bring back the Gem City Jam.  The last time the Gem City Jam was played was back in the late 90’s. 

Brian Trent does an excellent job articulating why they won’t bring back the matchup in Letter to the Editor, Bring Back the Gem City Jam as well as the benefits of having the two schools play each other. 

Here is a breakdown of the RPI of Wright State and Dayton over the last decade:

Year        Dayton   Wright State
2000         43           224
2001          72           122
2002          63          128
2003         13           237
2004         40          163
2005         125         174
2006         183        179
2007           72          75
2008          33          86
2009          27          93

Average RPI of Current Head Coches

UD Coach Brian Gregory(6 seasons 04-09): RPI 80 vs WSU Coach Brad Brownell (3 seasons 07-09): RPI 84.66

Average RPI in last 3 years(2007-2009): UD: 44  WSU: 84.66

Average RPI in last 5 years (2005-2009): UD: 108  WSU: 121.4

Average RPI in last 10 years (2000-2009): UD: 67.1  WSU: 148.1

As one can see, Wright State’s average RPI has increased over the decade and WSU had a similar average RPI as Dayton did in the last 5 seasons.  

In my opinion, I personally believe that the Dayton Flyer athletic director and some (not all) Dayton Flyer fans have an anxiety that there is too much on the line – their popularity and superiority over the Wright State Raiders – if they play each season in the Gem City Jam.  They also feel they have nothing to gain and more to lose by playing the Raiders. 

The only way I see Dayton scheduling Wright State is when the Raiders start making it to the NCAA tournament.  Wright State has the potential to do that with Head Coach Brad Brownell who has coached the Raiders to three 20 win seasons – their 2007 season being an NCAA tournament season.

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