College Basketball Picks: Iona Gaels vs. Loyola (MD) Greyhounds

Iona Gaels at Loyola (MD) Greyhounds
Friday, 2/10/12, 7:00 PM EST, TV:  ESPNU
Opening Point Spread:  Iona -2.5
Current Betting Line:  Iona -2.5
Opening Total:  142.5
Current Total:  143
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

College Football Sportsbook
The Iona Gaels and Loyola (MD) Greyhounds are tied atop the MAAC standings entering Friday night's game inside Reitz Arena

Iona has won four straight games since a 65-62 loss to the Siena Saints as 10.5-point road favorites on Jan. 23, while going “over” the total in the last two contests.  The Gaels are tied atop the MAAC standings with tonight’s opponent and tallied a convincing 74-63 win as 11-point home favorites in the first meeting.  Since the inception of the MAAC in the 1981-82 season, the program has tallied the most wins (288) during regular-season action in the conference.  Iona is 11-10 ATS on the season.

The Gaels have three starters that average in double figures with senior forward Mike Glover leading the way, averaging 18.5 points and 9.0 rebounds per game, while ranking second in the nation with a 66.5 percent shooting percentage.  Senior point guard Scott Machado is also a player to watch, leading all college basketball players with 240 assists.  Iona leads the nation in that particular category, sitting just above the Creighton Blue Jays.

Loyola will be playing its third game on ESPNU this season, picking up a 66-63 victory at Fairfield on Jan. 13, while capturing a 63-46 win last Friday when hosting Rider.  The Greyhounds have won their last six games and have covered the last four.  Loyola has won just 12 of the previous 53 meetings in this series, but hopes its defense can lead to a victory Friday night.  The team is allowing its last six opponents to shoot just 38.7 percent from the floor.  Loyola is 0-3 ATS as a home underdog of three points or less the last two-plus seasons.

The Greyhounds 18-5 start through the first 23 games of the season ranks tied for the third-best start during that many games in program history.  Loyola is led offensively by the play of sophomore guard Dylon Cormier, who is averaging 14.1 points per game.  Loyola is 8-1 at home this season and Reitz Arena will be rocking for this televised game on the ESPN family of networks.

Bettors will likely back the Gaels due to their 7-1 ATS mark as road favorites of 6.5 points or less, while the Greyhounds are 2-7 ATS as a home underdog.

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