The Loyola Chicago Ramblers (15-4, 5-2 MVC) visit Valparaiso to play the Crusaders (11-9, 2-5 MVC) in a game that has the potential to be low-scoring. Loyola Chicago is a 1.5-point favorite on the opening line, while the games Over/Under (O/U) opened at 137.5 points. Action starts at 4 p.m. ET on Sunday, January 21, 2018.
Loyola Chicago Ramblers vs. Valparaiso Crusaders ATS Preview
The last time the Ramblers played, they defeated the Southern Illinois Salukis, 79-65. Donte Ingram was the top scorer from either team with 25 points on 7-for-12 shooting. Loyola Chicago dominated nearly every stat category in the game. They had a fantastic free throw rate of 0.396 (above their season average of 0.265) and an effective field goal percentage of 0.625 (above their season average of 0.576). For those same stats, Southern Illinois put up marks of 0.268 and 0.446, respectively.
The Crusaders are hoping for a better outcome after their 64-57 loss to the Missouri State Bears in their last contest. Markus Golder led Valparaiso in scoring with 12 points on 5-for-11 shooting. Missouri State had a better free throw rate (0.196 vs. 0.145). Valparaiso, on the other hand, had a turnover percentage of 13.8 (better than their season average of 19.2).
Points could be at a premium in this contest between two of the nations premier defenses. Valparaiso ranks 37th in defensive efficiency (95.5) and Loyola Chicago is 35th (95.5). It could also be an error-filled game for the offense of the Ramblers, which ranks 277th in ball protection (turnover percentage of 20.7 percent). They’ll be going up against the stingy defense of the Crusaders, which forces the 59th-most turnovers in the NCAA (21.7 percent).
Of Loyola Chicago’s 15 games with betting action, eight have finished under the projected point total, while 11 of Valparaiso’s 17 games have finished under the projected point total. The Ramblers come into this game with a clear advantage in both straight up (SU) and against the spread (ATS) records. They are 15-4 SU and 10-5 ATS, while the Crusaders are 11-9 SU and 9-8 ATS.
Loyola Chicago Ramblers at Valparaiso Crusaders Betting Prediction
Predictions: SU Winner – Loyola Chicago, ATS Winner – Loyola Chicago, O/U – Under
- The Crusaders rank 200th in three pointers attempted per game (20.1) while the Ramblers rank 249th (17.7).
- Valparaiso ranks 101st in rebounds per game (37.0) while Loyola Chicago ranks 249th (32.9).
- The Crusaders average 8.1 steals per game, which ranks 25th in the NCAA. The Ramblers rank 145th in steals allowed per game (7.1).
- Loyola Chicago ranks 49th in assists allowed per game (11.7) while Valparaiso ranks 113th (13.3).
- The Crusaders average margin of victory in their last five games has been 1.4, down from 4.8 for the season.
- During their last five games, the Ramblers have scored an average of 68.2 points per game (4.4 below their season average) and allowed an average of 60.4 points per game (3.7 below their season average).