Richmond was blown out by James Madison 55-20 Saturday at the Robins Stadium. The Spiders committed five egregious turnovers, as two interceptions were returned for touchdowns by the Dukes and two fumbles near the end zone ended promising Spider drives. Richmond's playoff hopes took a devastating blow with this loss, and although the chances of earning a spot are not nil, they are slim. James Madison, which will face Elon next weekend, has put itself in a great position for a playoff spot with this win.
There were not many positives for the Spiders in this game. Quarterback Michael Strauss did throw for three touchdowns in the first half of his first game back from injury, but in the second half he threw multiple ill-advised throws that were intercepted. Seth Fisher was effective on the ground with 124 yards, but committed two turnovers of his own.
The negatives were abundant for Richmond against James Madison. The team turned the ball over five times, allowed 526 yards of offense to the Dukes and the team surrendered a season-high 55 points. JMU quarterback and Georgia Tech transfer Vad Lee earned yards at will, throwing for 433 yards and adding 22 more on the ground. But the star of the game was Taylor Reynolds, who had eight tackles for the Dukes, returned two interceptions for touchdowns and forced both of Fisher's fumbles. The Spiders were out-shined in this game, as they allowed JMU to score more points than it ever has in this rivalry with 55.
Next week, Richmond will travel to Williamsburg, Virginia, to take on the William & Mary Tribe in the "South's oldest rivalry." The Spiders will need to win and get some extraneous circumstances from other games to earn a playoff spot.
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