Diving Into Stats!

There’s almost a week before Loyola’s next game at South Florida on Saturday, Dec. 16.  So maybe it’s a good time to go diving into some statistics of note.

Box Plus/Minus Fun!

Our best player according to the plus/minus?  Jayden Dawson.  I’m only counting players who have logged 100+ minutes, but Dawson is the breakout leader with a 4.6 on offense and a 3.9 on defense to rack up a +8.4.  That’s astounding.

Coming in second on the combined offensive/defensive plus/minus is Dame Adelekun, with a 5.0 combined score (2.9 offense, 2.1 defense).  The top defensive player is Miles Rubin, who has a team-leading 4.6 on defense.  Rubin is still below zero on offense, but that’s where his biggest upside lives.

Here’s where you can find the full stats for all players:  https://www.sports-reference.com/cbb/schools/loyola-il/men/2024.html#advanced::27

Simple Rating System

How does this year’s team compare so far?  Last year I wrote a five-part series on the best teams in Loyola history, which relied quite a bit on the SRS (Simple Rating System) to place the rankings.  It’s a rating system that relies on point differential and strength of schedule, which is applied across college basketball from 1949-50 to present.

Last year’s Loyola team, our inaugural run in the A-10, was pretty bad historically, finishing at 54th among the 74 years of Loyola men’s basketball teams evaluated with the SRS.  This years team?  So far, the 2023-24 Ramblers are 16th best over the past 75 years evaluated with the SRS.  The relatively high ranking is due in large part to a Strength of Schedule ranking that’s 14th best in the past 75 years of Loyola basketball, and higher by far (so far at least) than any season in the MVC.

KenPom MVPs

KenPom automatically assigns MVP status to a player for each game, according to the metrics evaluated for their ranking system (Offensive/Defensive efficiency, etc.)  A player doesn’t have to be on the winning team to receive the MVP—best player according to their number gets the nod, win or lose.  So here’s the MVPs for Loyola’s 10 games thus far:

Florida Atlantic:  Vlad Goldin, FAU

Eastern Illinois:  Des Watson, Loyola

Illinois Chicago:  Isaiah Rivera, UIC

New Orleans:  Jordan Johnson, UNO

Creighton:  Ryan Kalkbrenner, Creighton

Boston College:  Braden Norris, Loyola

Chicago State:  Jalen Quinn, Loyola

Harvard:  Philip Alston, Loyola

Tulsa:  Jayden Dawson, Loyola

Goshen:  Philip Alston, Loyola