Loyola Chicago vs. Davidson Odds, Picks | College Basketball Betting Guide (Wednesday, Jan. 4)

Loyola Chicago vs. Davidson Odds, Picks | College Basketball Betting Guide (Wednesday, Jan. 4) article feature image

Brian Spurlock/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Foster Loyer

  • The Davidson Wildcats host the Loyola Chicago Ramblers on Wednesday night in a key A-10 showdown.
  • Both of these teams had big expectations at the start of the season, but have shown their share of struggles as conference play gets going.
  • Continue reading for a full breakdown of this matchup, including a betting pick.

Loyola Chicago vs. Davidson Odds

Wednesday, Jan. 4
7 p.m. ET
CBS Sports Network
Loyola Chicago Odds
-105o / -115u
Davidson Odds
-105o / -115u
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute college basketball odds here.

Loyola Chicago travels to North Carolina to face a Davidson team that has  similar aspirations as conference play gets under way.

The Ramblers and Wildcats are two A-10 programs that have had their fair share of success as of late. Unfortunately, both seem to be playing just below their usual standards so far this season.

Loyola opened up A-10 play with a disappointing double-digit loss to George Washington on its home floor.

Meanwhile, Davidson has not overly impressed to start the year. The Wildcats' best win came on November 25th against San Francisco. This is their only win against a team inside the top-160 (103rd).

For a full breakdown of where these two stand going into conference play make sure to check out the A-10 State of the Conference Betting Report.

Loyola Chicago Ramblers

The Ramblers will be looking for their first true road victory since a November 11th win over Illinois-Chicago.

Under head coach Drew Valentine, Loyola has built a style of basketball defined by a slow and methodical pace. The Ramblers rank 304th nationally in adjusted tempo, averaging just 65.3 possessions per game.

These few possessions have not been utilized as the Ramblers turn the ball over 24.2% of the time they have the ball.

This carelessness has resulted in a Ramblers offense that averages fewer than 70 points per contest. Most concerning is that these poor offensive performances have come against a strength of schedule that is 228th in overall defensive components (according to KenPom).

Loyola will now travel to face a Davidson defense that will take away what Loyola does best. The Wildcats rank inside the top-120 defensively in effective field goal percentage, 3-point percentage and free-throw attempts allowed per-game.

The Davidson defense, although not perfect, will be one of the best the Ramblers have faced this season.

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Davidson Wildcats

Matt McKillop first year as head coach of the Davidson Wildcats hasn't been as successful as he might have hoped.

The Wildcats have recorded only two wins to teams inside the top-180, and have lost two games to teams ranked outside the top-200.

This up-and-down season has been the result of a Wildcats team that has yet to find consistency from beyond the arc. Davidson is one of the worst 3-point shooting teams in the country, shooting only 31.3% from distance, resulting in just 25.6% of their points coming from this range (310th nationally).

Where Davidson has been able to supplement its offense is at the free-throw line. The Wildcats score 21.1% of their points from the charity stripe (50th nationally), converting 72% of their attempts.

This free-throw tendency will be an advantage against a Loyola team that simply can't defend without fouling. The Ramblers allow the 40th-most points from the free-throw line (22.1%).

If the Wildcats are able to get some much needed outside shooting progression on their home floor, they will have the matchups to handle the Ramblers.

On the defensive end, the Wildcats will look to clog the lane against a Loyola team that ranks 12th nationally in 2-point percentage (57.8%). Davidson will do so through its front-court duo of 6-foot-11 Reed Bailey and 6-foot-10 David Skogman.

This amount of size on the interior will frustrate a Loyola team that ranks 254th nationally in average height.

Loyola Chicago vs. Davidson Betting Pick

It is not easy to trust either of these teams after their non-conference performances.

That being said, I believe Davidson's struggles have been the result of poor shooting performances that are bound to see some progression.

Loyola, on the other hand, has not been able to take care of the basketball or defend without fouling which are both signs of larger problems.

Look for Davidson to convert more outside attempts against a Loyola team that is allowing just around the D-1 average in shots from outside. This will open up the floor for their superior front-court.

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