Click here for a complete list of Goal.com's 2011 teams to watch
RICHMOND, Va. – It's evident that Virginia Commonwealth University head men's soccer coach Dave Giffard laid the foundation for a bright future in his first season with the Rams in 2010.
Others noticed, too.
Goal.com recently tabbed VCU as one of 11 teams to watch in 2011 after the Rams placed second in the Colonial Athletic Association, their best regular season finish in six years.
Giffard, who inherited a program that finished 10th in the CAA in 2009 and ninth in 2008, guided the Rams to a spot in the league's four-team tournament for the first time since 2007. The Black & Gold, which produced a school record-tying 10-match unbeaten streak last year, suffered a heartbreaking, 2-1 setback in the final seconds against Hofstra in the semifinals, denying the Rams a trip to their first CAA title match in six years.
VCU received both national and regional recognition for its play on the pitch in 2010. The Rams were ranked among the top 10 in the NSCAA South Atlantic Regional poll during the final six weeks of the season before concluding the year ranked seventh. Meanwhile, the Black & Gold gained national attention when it appeared in Goal.com's Top 25 in back-to-back weeks (Oct. 4 and Oct. 11).
Giffard and the Rams hope a productive Spring will help generate even more success in 2011.