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PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2021 7:06 pm 
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Location: Chicago, Illinois
Saturday, March 27, 2021 1:40 p.m.
Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, Ind.

Loyola reached the NCAA Sweet Sixteen for their fifth time in school history with an emphatic, wire-to-wire 71-58 win over the Illinois Fighting Illini last Sunday. The Ramblers forced 17 turnovers, out-rebounded the Illini 30-27, and held the Big Ten Tournament Champs to a season-low 58 points. It was Loyola's second straight win over a conference tournament champion, coming two days after a 71-60 win over ACC Champion Georgia Tech.

On Saturday, the Ramblers will face yet another P5 conference champion in the Oregon State Beavers. The 12th-seed Oregon State team came from sixth place in the Pac 12 to win their conference tournament, defeating NCAA Tournament teams UCLA, Oregon, and Colorado on consecutive days to win the title. The Beavers then defeated 5th-seeded Tennessee and 4 seed Oklahoma State to reach the Sweet Sixteen and win their first NCAA Tournament game(s) since 1982.

There were really two Oregon State men's basketball teams this year: the one before Valentine's Day, and the one after. With their 75-73 loss at Arizona State on Feb. 14, Oregon State was 10-10 overall and 6-8 in the Pac 12. They were hovering around the 120 mark in Ken Pomeroy's rankings. But since that point the Beavers have gone 9-2. They've won five straight games, all against NCAA Tournament teams. In five weeks, they've lifted their KenPom to 49.

The transformation has come mostly due to the emergence of 7'1" senior center Roman Silva. The juco transfer averaged only 1.9 ppg and got one start as a junior last season. In 2020-21, he was averaging 4.7 ppg and popping in and out of the starting lineup before Feb. 14. Silva had been splitting time with 6'10" sophomore forward Dearon Tucker, but Coach Wayne Tinkle made the decision on that Arizona-Arizona State weekend road trip to give Silva most of the minutes under the rim. His minutes per game jumped from 12.2 to 21.0, his rebounds are up to 4.5 per game from 1.8, his blocks are up from .4 per game to 1.1 per game, and his points per game are up to 7.4.

The other changes since that time include better three point field goal defense, better rebounding, and a tightening of the player rotations. Since Feb. 14, OSU has gone from a .3 team rebounding deficit (32.3-32.6) to a 4.4 rebounding advantage (32.0-27.6). Their field goal percentage has jumped from 42.2% before to 46.2% since. The Beavers were already a top team nationwide in three point defense, currently ranking 24th in Division I, but since the end of the regular season they've stepped it up. In the Pac 12 and NCAA Tournaments Oregon State has stifled their opponents' three point percentage, allowing only 25.2% of threes to fall.

The Beavers starters are 6'5" senior guard Ethan Thompson, 6'3" sophomore guard Jarod Lucas, 6'5" senior guard Zach Reichle, 6'7" junior forward Warith Alatishe, and 7'1" senior center Roman Silva. Thompson and Lucas are the top scorers, with Thompson averaging 15.6 points per game and Lucas chipping in 13.0. Thompson does most of his damage inside the arc, and he's earned a team-high 166 trips to the foul line where he converts on 81.3%. Lucas leads the team in made threes with 73 made threes on the season to outpace Thompson's 45 made threes. Lucas connects on 39% of his three attempts and is also an 89.6% free throw shooter. Reichle fills out the starting backcourt, averaging 7.4 points while taking the majority of his shots from distance.

Alatishe averages 9.5 points on 51.1% shooting from the field, and leads the team with 8.6 rebounds per game. He's probably the best defensive player on the team, leading the squad in blocks (1.5 per game) and nearly matching Thompson in steals (1.2 per game). Alatishe has scored the most two-point field goals on the team, but struggles from the free throw line (54%) and outside the arc. The high-flying Alatishe and the seven-footer Silva form a significant rim protection duo; in OSU's two NCAA Tournament games, opponents have shot only 35.6% on two-point attempts.

Coming off the bench are 6'10" sophomore forward Maurice Calloo, 6'3" sophomore guard Gianni Hunt, 6'5" guard Tariq Silver, and 6'10" sophomore forward Dearon Tucker. Calloo gets the majority of the time spelling Silva and averages 5.5 ppg. Hunt is the backup playmaker, averaging 5.2 points and 2.6 assists while playing 20 minutes per game. Tucker, weighing in at 240, played more minutes early in the season and averaged 2.8 points. Silver is a big-bodied guard, a transfer from Eastern Michigan, who plays limited minutes.

As has been noted, OSU Coach Wayne Tinkle has a connection with Loyola while growing up. His father was an administrator at Loyola (between stints at Marquette and Gonzaga), and he spent a good chunk of his childhood around the Loyola campus, including watching games in Alumni Gym during Coach Ireland's tenure.

Loyola and Oregon State were on opposite sides of the bracket when OSU made their last trip to the Final Four in 1963. OSU also reached the Final Four in 1949, the same year Loyola reached the NIT Final. But the only time the Ramblers and Oregon State played each other before was New Year's Eve 1927-- Loyola won, 31-19.

The Ramblers will need to guard against a let-down after their nearly-everything-went-right win over state rival Illinois. The fantastic, late-season Oregon State is not to be confused with the talented but misfiring Oregon State of the early part of the season-- these guys are a lot better defensively than they're given credit for, and they have a lot of weapons on offense that can heat up at any time. Oregon State beat an Oklahoma State team many thought were Final Four material (with the top NBA Draft prospect) by holding the Cowboys to 27.7% shooting from the field and getting to the line and converting on 32 of 35 free throws. This OSU team has knocked off five straight opponents in elimination games-- all against tournament teams.


Loyola Game Notes: https://loyolaramblers.com/news/2021/3/ ... urday.aspx

Oregon State Game Notes: https://osubeavers.com/documents/2021/3 ... _Notes.pdf

TV/Streaming video: CBS, March Madness Live https://www.ncaa.com/march-madness-live/watch

Radio/Streaming audio: WLUW https://wluw.org/tag/stream/

Live stats: https://www.ncaa.com/scoreboard/basketball-men/d1

Vegas Odds: Loyola by 6.5


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2021 8:40 pm 
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They have a good amount of size, bigger than U of I on average it seems like


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2021 9:22 pm 
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Since 2018, we are 4-1 in games on CBS, if I am not mistaken.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2021 10:15 pm 
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Calloo and Uguak are two of the 11 Canadians left in the NCAA Tournament. Chris Duarte from Oregon is probably the best remaining Canadian player; Uguak might be the second best Canadian left playing.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2021 8:08 am 
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I think this is going to be a low scoring, defensive game. First one to 60, wins. A 5 point lead is going to seem like double digits


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:02 am 
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Location: Livin in the middle, between the two extremes
For those of you in Chicago, this looks kinda cool



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PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2021 12:27 pm 
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Why were students protesting Tinkle's dad? @Swella or anyone else who was there.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2021 12:38 pm 
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jmiller2794 wrote:
Why were students protesting Tinkle's dad? @Swella or anyone else who was there.


Courtesy of Mpossley:

The 1972 Loyola yearbook is here online. https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/48603524.pdf

See page 117 for "Sink the Tink." This explains the "issues".

Funny, the way I remembered it some students were mad at Tinkle because he bombed Cambodia.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2021 2:02 pm 
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Coach Tinkle will always wear the stain of his father not having allowed Playboy to be sold on campus. May we avenge ourselves of this injustice fully this weekend.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2021 2:13 pm 
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RIGHT ON! FIGHT THE POWER!!

(Was "wear the stain" an intentional, or just a happy accident, double entendre?)


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