Missouri State at Loyola-Chicago, 4:00 PM Eastern, ESPNU
With a light schedule among the Under the Radar programs today, we are turning our attention to a few teams that are a step off the top of the standings in the Missouri Valley Conference as the Missouri State Bears head to the Windy City to take on the Loyola-Chicago Ramblers. Missouri State put together a solid 9-4 non-conference resume, including a win over a Big East school (ok, it was only DePaul, but they are still in the Big East last time we checked!). The Bears are 3-2 so far in MVC play (12-6 overall), and are coming off a 4 point home win over Evansville earlier this week. Junior Alize Johnson has led the way so far this season for the Bears, although his stat lines are somewhat interesting. He has had some great offensive games, including 30 points against Indiana State and 21 against Valparaiso. He has also had very low-scoring games, including a scoreless effort against Southeast Missouri State and scoring only 7, 11, and 9 points respectively in his team’s last three games. However, he has had double-digit rebounds in all over those games highlighted by a 16 rebound effort in the Evansville win this week. That type of continued effort on the boards will give the Bears a great shot at the win this afternoon.
The Loyola Ramblers also put together a solid non-conference season, winning 10 of 13 games including a victory over San Diego State. The Ramblers are 2-3 so far in conference play and coming off of a 12-point loss at Wichita State Wednesday night. Despite losing, Milton Doyle has a great game against the Shockers. He scored 23 points while pulling down 7 rebounds and dishing out 8 assists. Doyle has been in double figures in scoring every game so far this season, including a season-best 35 points last weekend in a win over Bradley. This game today may not be a battle for the top of the conference standings, but with players like Johnson and Doyle on the court, it will be a fun one to watch and should prove worthy of the Under the Radar Game of the Day selection.