Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 11:15 AM EST.
4:00 PM EST. The market hasn’t made the transition yet from football to college basketball but for this one day, to fill the void of no football since September, the market will test the waters. We mention that because the Ramblers of Loyola Chicago stick out today. The Ramblers warmed the hearts of every mid-major fan in the country last year with an incredible run to the Final Four. The Ramblers are now in first place in the MVC with a 5-2 conference mark while the Salukis are third last in the Valley with a 3-4 mark. The Ramblers will have a lot of market appeal today spotting what looks like a very beatable number against what appears to be a vastly inferior opponent but we’re urging you not to bite, as very little separates these two and the dog might even be the better team.
Although the Ramblers' key contributors this season are returnees from last year's incredible run -- center Cameron Krutwig and guards Marques Townes and Clayton Custer -- the Ramblers rank only 131st in BPI, a far cry from the No. 50 rank it had entering last year's tournament. This year's squad shoots well from inside the arc and has the best defensive rebounding rate but the second-worst offensive rebounding rate. The 2018-19 Ramblers’ numbers are skewed because they have played a weak schedule. In fact, the Ramblers have played the 240th ranked out-of-conference schedule in the country and they didn’t even fair that well with losses to Furman, Boston College, Nevada, Ball State, Maryland and St. Joe’s. While that’s not a bad slate of teams, they didn’t beat any of them and only beat up on weak teams. Additionally, the Ramblers have disturbing losses to Evansville by 19 and to Missouri State by 35. The Ramblers may be 5-2 in conference but they are just 12-8 overall and have not looked pretty at all.
The Salukis are just 10-10 overall but they have played the 140th ranked strength of schedule in the country. The Salukis have played Buffalo not once but twice and lost both game by single digits. They opened the year against Kentucky and didn’t look out of place in a 12-point loss. The Salukis also played Saint Louis, the A-10 leader for most of the year up until this past week and beat them. The Salukis last three losses were by four, one and three points respectively, thus, they are a bounce or two from being 6-1 in conference as opposed to 3-4. The Salukis play such good defense that they are extremely hard to put away and that proof is in their entire body of work this season. You may also notice the small total here of 124, which means that winning by six, which is the number that’s going to beat us, is going to seem more like 16 when both teams will likely score in the 50-60 range. Take the generous points and don’t be afraid to use the dog in some money line parlays.
Open an account today at and take advantage of their -104 style pricing on sides and totals, which is 60% better than other sportsbooks.
Southern Illinois +5 -106 (Risking 2.12 units - To Win: 2.00)