Loyola battles Valparaiso in a Missouri Valley Conference clash that airs on NBC Sports Chicago Tuesday night at 7 p.m.
The Ramblers (10-7, 3-1) are fighting for the top spot in the Valley with the Crusaders (11-6, 4-0) as the top two teams in the conference play an important early league game.
Coming off of an important home win over Illinois State on Saturday, the Ramblers are hoping to make another move by taking a crack at the Valley's only unbeaten team. Veterans Marques Townes, Clayton Custer and Cameron Krutwig are all having strong seasons for Loyola as the Ramblers attempt to position themselves for another potential NCAA tournament bid.
Valparaiso has put together a strong five-game winning streak, including a good road win at Southern Illinois over the weekend. The Crusaders have a balanced group of scorers, led by forward Ryan Fazekas, and center Derrik Smits -- the son of former Indiana Pacers center Rik Smits.
These two teams will also play on Feb. 10 as the Ramblers will make a trip to Valpo for the rematch. For now, this matchup could provide an indication of the team to beat in the Valley.
Porter Morter isn't going anywhere.
After reports circulated that St. John's offered him a long-term contract worth north of $2 million per year, the 50-year-old head coach has decided instead to stay at Loyola. He's led the Ramblers to three 20-win seasons in the past five years, and guided the program in 2018 to their first Final Four appearance since 1963 — a span of 55 years.
Moser released this statement on his Twitter account on Tuesday:
Dear Rambler Nation,
I know there have been a lot of things swirling out there the past few days. Because I have coached and coached with some amazing young men, and because I have had the support of the University, friends, family, and the loyal Loyola fans; opportunities have arisen. I know that is part of the business, but it doesn't change the fact that I'm humbled, grateful, and grounded with what comes my way.
People in business say I'm crazy for passing up opportunities and the money. But what they don't know is the amazing young men I coach and the culture we have built. What they don't know are the amazing young men who are committed to come to Loyola and wear the Maroon and Gold. What they don't know are the people and friends that make up the Loyola community. And what they don't know is what makes me tick.
So what I do say to Rambler nation is ... let's keep building this culture and making a difference. Let's keep chasing championships. Let's do things better than we have ever done before.
With that said ... I'M ALL IN!
David Haugh, Teddy Greenstein and Chris Bleck join Kap on the panel.
0:00- The Men's Final Four is set and the biggest surprise is that Duke isn't one of the four. What does the loss mean for Zion Williamson's legacy in Durham?
7:30- The panel breaks down the Final Four matchups.
11:00- After a disasterous weekend in Texas, should Cubs fans be worried about their team even though they've played only 3 games?
17:00- The panel recapping the betting weekend including Virginia's bad beat and the Bears win total.
Listen to the entire podcast here or in the embedded player below.
Sports Talk Live Podcast