Elite Eight Odds & Preview — Loyola-Chicago Ramblers vs. Kansas State Wildcats
One thing you know about the Loyola-Chicago Ramblers is that they know how to play the endgame. What other conclusion can you come to when they have won three games in the NCAA Tournament by a total of four points? This is a skill that might be useful as they move into their Elite Eight game against the Kansas State Wildcats, which takes place at 6:09 pm ET at the Philips Arena in Atlanta. If you are a BetAnySports customer, you can place wagers even after the game begins, as you access what they have available through Live Betting Ultra.
After beating Miami, Tennessee and Nevada in genuine thrillers, Loyola stands at 31-5 on the season, and a sizzling 23-9 against points, so they are obviously performing above expectations. This is a team that plays very carefully, although it’s not necessarily reflected in their offensive turnover percentage, which is outside the top 200 in the country. Nonetheless, they are 319 in Adjusted Tempo, and they obviously are able to get good shots, as they are among the nation’s top 15 in both three-point percentage (39.9%) and two-point percentage (56.6%).
Kansas State also has to be a surprise, as despite having their best offensive big man, Dean Wade, they are one step away from the Final Four. The key to what they have done is on the defensive end, as they have definitely shut down their opponents from beyond the three-point arc. But it is questionable as to how poorly can get without 6-10 Wade, who was limited to only eight minutes of play in the 61-58 victory over Kentucky on Thursday night.
In the Elite Eight NCAA Tournament betting odds posted on this game at BetAnySports, Kansas State is slightly favored:
Kansas State Wildcats -1.5
Loyola-Chicago Ramblers +1.5
Over 126.5 points -110
Under 126.5 points -110
Wade sat out three games with a foot injury, and Bruce Weber, the head coach, thought he could play up to 16 minutes in Thursday’s game. And that would have been a nice thing, considering that Wade (16.5 ppg) is the team’s leading scorer and also the team’s leading three-point shooter. But after eight minutes of action in the first half, he was not able to go any further. It didn’t matter, as Xavier Sneed got 22 points for the Wildcats, against defeated Kentucky squad that was on a pretty good roll at the time.
Loyola play some solid defense as well, ranking among the top 25 in the country in Adjusted Defensive Efficiency. And they really shut the door on Nevada after the 10-minute mark of the first half the other night, holding them to only two points, which help them overcome a 20-8 deficit. But of course, it had to come down to the wire, and Loyola hold on held on for the one-point victory. Some people aren’t surprised as to how will they’ve done, because they showed some moxie earlier in the campaign by going to Gainesville and beating Florida 65-59. But this is a team without a lot of size, so they obviously must control the pace. Kansas State is much the same way, however, leads us to believe that this game could go under the total of 126.5 points.
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