The Illinois Fighting Illini (24-6) take on the Loyola Chicago Ramblers (25-4) in a Midwest Region Second Round game Sunday. The top-seeded Illini and eighth-seeded Ramblers will tip-off at 12:10 p.m. ET at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. Below, we analyze the Illinois-Loyola Chicago odds and lines, with March Madness NCAA Tournament picks and predictions.
The Fighting Illini — ranked second in the Ferris Mowers Coaches Poll powered by USA TODAY Sports — were dominant in their First Round win over Drexel, taking an 18-point lead by halftime and never looking back. A stingy UI defense held DU to a 30.6% shooting mark. That type of defense is part of a trend: the Illini have won eight straight games; they’ve held foes to a 39.5% figure over that stretch.
The Ramblers downed Georgia Tech 71-60 in Friday’s Round 1 contest. Loyola drained 11 triples, its most in a single game since Dec. 27, and the Ramblers hauled down a season-best 12 offensive rebounds. Loyola has won seven games in a row and 18 of its last 19.
Illinois vs. Loyola Chicago: Odds, spread and lines
- Money line: Illinois -350 (bet $350 to win $100) | Loyola Chicago +280 (bet $100 to win $280)
- Against the spread/ATS: Illinois -7.5 (-110) | Loyola Chicago +7.5 (-110)
- Over/Under: 133.5 (O: -110 | U: -110)
March Madness betting promotions
Current March Madness offers from BetMGM Sportsbook:
Bet $1 on any team’s money line, WIN $100 (in free bets) if ANY team hits a 3-pointer that day. Bet now!
RISK-FREE FIRST BET, up to $600! Bet now!
Offers available in CO, IA, IN, MI, NJ, PA, TN, VA and WV. New customer offers, terms and conditions apply.
Illinois vs. Loyola Chicago: Odds, lines, predictions and picks
Illinois 69, Loyola Chicago 63
Money line (ML)
NO-GO here. Illinois is the more talented team, but from a value standpoint, a tag of +300-or-better on Loyola would be worth looking into.
Against the spread (ATS)
Illinois is a solid lean up until about a 6 or 6.5-point threshold. In its last eight games as a 7-to-9-point favorite, the Fighting Illini are 3-4-1 ATS. Over their last three such games, they are 1-1-1 ATS.
This Land-of-Lincoln match-up is a clash of pace, with Loyola playing a style short on possessions and Illinois playing at a faster tempo. Styles aside, both teams excel on the defensive end. Both rank in the top-10 in defensive-efficiency metrics and are tremendous on the defensive boards.
The Illini are accustomed to playing slow-paced teams in the Big Ten. In a combined nine games against the slowest Big Ten squads (Wisconsin, Maryland, Indiana, Purdue, Ohio State, Michigan), the Under has a 5-3-1 edge.
A game in the 120s is a distinct possibility. TAKE THE UNDER 133.5 (-110).
More college sports coverage from USA TODAY Sports Media Group:
Gannett may earn revenue from audience referrals to betting services. Newsrooms are independent of this relationship and there is no influence on news coverage. This information is for entertainment purposes only. We make no representations or warranties as to the accuracy, completeness, or reliability of any content.