New URI coach Miller to welcome former team Dayton to Ryan Center for conference play

·3 min read

Archie Miller will welcome his previous Atlantic 10 employer to the Ryan Center in the 2022-23 season.

The URI defense closes in on Dayton's Mustapha Amzil in the first half of a February game last season. The Rams will host the Flyers — who were once coached by now-Rams head coach Archie Miller — during their 18-game conference schedule this season.
The URI defense closes in on Dayton's Mustapha Amzil in the first half of a February game last season. The Rams will host the Flyers — who were once coached by now-Rams head coach Archie Miller — during their 18-game conference schedule this season.

The University of Rhode Island will host Dayton as part of its 18-game league schedule, which was released Monday morning. The Rams will play 10 of their 14 conference opponents only once — the Flyers are expected to be among the contenders for a regular season title.

Fordham, George Mason, Massachusetts and La Salle make up a set of rather unimpressive home-and-home foes. The real iron comes through the five single home games and five single road games – URI is set to visit Saint Louis, which should open as Dayton’s fellow championship favorite.

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Miller will enter his 11th season overall as a head coach and his first with the Rams after signing a five-year deal to replace David Cox. He reached four NCAA Tournaments during his six seasons with the Flyers, including an Elite Eight run in 2013-14. Miller left for Indiana at the close of the 2016-17 campaign and spent four years with the Hoosiers before his dismissal in 2020-21.

URI head coach Archie Miller meets the media and local supporters during a March 21 news conference in Kingston.
URI head coach Archie Miller meets the media and local supporters during a March 21 news conference in Kingston.

Who else is coming to Ryan Center?

Defending regular-season champion Davidson, George Washington, St. Bonaventure and VCU also come to Kingston for single games. URI visits conference tournament champion Richmond, Duquesne, Saint Joseph’s and new league member Loyola Chicago for single road games. The Wildcats fell to Michigan State in a March Madness thriller while the Spiders upset Iowa and were crushed by Providence with a Sweet 16 berth on the line.

Poor results over the last two years have the Rams on the outside of what is an unbalanced schedule in the league. The top teams from the previous season are matched up against one another home-and-home to improve chances for quality wins and postseason berths. Fordham (177), the Patriots (114), the Minutemen (178) and the Explorers (225) all finished with NET rankings that would have made them bad losses for any potential NCAA Tournament qualifier.

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More matchups to look forward to

Miller is one of six new coaches in the league – each of the other five will play at URI next season. Matt McKillop takes over for his retired father, Bob, at Davidson. Keith Urgo was promoted at Fordham after Kyle Neptune succeeded the retired Jay Wright at Villanova. Chris Caputo (George Washington), Frank Martin (UMass) and Fran Dunphy (La Salle) all came in for fired predecessors.

The Ramblers have won at least 20 games in each of their last five seasons and upset their way to the Final Four in 2017-18. Drew Valentine reached March Madness in his first try last year after taking over for Porter Moser, who went to Oklahoma. Loyola Chicago has finished as a top-35 KenPom.com team in each of those postseason runs.

The Rams are also expected to host Providence, Brown and Milwaukee – the last to finish a home-and-home series – in nonconference play. URI has remaining home-and-home road dates to fulfill with Georgia State, Seton Hall and Boston College. The Rams also open the Cayman Classic with Kansas State on Nov. 21, would face Nevada or Tulane in the next round and will meet Akron, Illinois State, LSU or Western Kentucky in their third game at John Gray Gymnasium.

Specific dates and times – along with additional nonconference opponents – are likely to be formally announced later this summer. Visit gorhody.com/sports/mens-basketball for more information. 

bkoch@providencejournal.com    

On Twitter: @BillKoch25

This article originally appeared on The Providence Journal: URI coach Archie Miller to welcome ex-team Dayton to Ryan Center