Intro/History Between Teams:
Loyola and Davidson will cross paths for just the third time in team history, but this time as both Atlantic10 members. Last time out back in 2019, the Ramblers lost in a back and forth battle to Davidson. Since then rosters have changed and even coaches. Yes, after 33 years Bob McKillop left the reins to his son, and Loyola of course with Drew in his 2nd season. This will be Loyola’s first A10 road game, which will see them start this 2 game trip first with Davidson and then George Mason. Turning around conference play after starting off with a poor defensive outing against GW will greatly help the standings down the stretch.
Main Storyline For This Game:
Two main fundamental positions I hope to see from this game moving forward with the Ramblers as we move forward in conference play, defense and bench. It might be more complicated then I realize I totally understand, just looking at the numbers and the outcomes I truly think defense takes time. With a new set of rotations and schemas, defense can be tricky to find consistency. That is what we have on our hands is the lack of consistent defense, games like Clemson show off the highlights of what is possible. However we have also had our fair share of disappointing outings, Myrtle Beach etc, we don’t need to go into details. Laughing and maybe a tear or two as I write this. But truly I realized as we recorded the last episode that we lost two great defenders in Lucas and Aher. That is the reality and to expect the same outcomes is crazy, season by season will always be different, but the hope is to find some consistency as a program. We keep saying wake up calls after crazy games but with the GW game this might be the last time I say wake up call this season. Dig in and fight hard on defense and the offense will follow.
Now a way to help contribute to that offense the rest of the way is to work with players off the bench. Bryce truly had an efficient outing Saturday and against A10 teams is possible. Jayden, Jalen, Hutty, and Saint are easily capable of helping this team win. Breaks in between games are shorter and rotations are needed to produce strong outings. A10 conference play will be physical and demanding on the roster, looking to keep that next man up mentality is crucial. Some may argue that players can just go out and play 40 minutes like nothing matters, but I think productivity and efficiency are key.
Hot or Not and Whom to Watch:
HOT: Marquise Kennedy has to my eyes gotten back into stride. Fully healthy I don’t know but he has this drive in him the last few outings and it shows. Over the last 7 games he is averaging 14 points per game and 61% FG. So I say these outings are evidence that Marquise is looking to score and help the time win. Adding ball movement to the arsenal can open up the team’s offensive success.
NOT: Defense, it was not present for the George Washington game for sure. Ramblers allowed GW to put up 97 points, 40 from one player allowed. Lock down defense is not something that is being shown too much. When a stop is needed we seem to not find the right position to get that. Finding the right player to step up and lock in on defense is something we should look for moving forward.
Game Time, Broadcast Info, Ticket Availability
- WHEN: Wednesday, January 4th, 6:00 PM CT
- WATCH: CBS Sports Network
- LISTEN: Rambler Sport Network
- STATS: Live Stats
Probable Starting Lineups:
G: Braden Norris
G: Marquise Kennedy
F: Ben Schwieger
F: Phil Alston
C: Tom Welch
By The Numbers:
- Points Per Game
- Loyola: 69.1 points/game
- Davidson: 71.6 points/game
- Points Allowed Per Game
- Loyola: 69.8 points/game
- Davidson: 69.8 points/game
- Loyola” Reminder 11 players never played a game for the Ramblers on this year’s team
- I think Foster Loyer has been at Davidson longer then Bob McKillop was.