Loyola enters the 2018 NCAA Tournament as the No. 11 seed in the South region. The team will play the No. 6-seeded Miami Hurricanes in the first round at 2:10 p.m. CT Thursday on TruTV.
This is the first time that the Ramblers have participated in March Madness since 1985. They won the Missouri Valley Conference tournament with a 65-49 win over Illinois State to clinch their automatic bid as one of 32 conference champions.
At the time the matchup was announced, they were clearly quite excited.
Clayton Custer, Donte Ingram, and Marques Townes lead a team that went 28-5 during the regular season. Custer is the top offensive creator with 13.4 points per game on 52 percent shooting, and Ingram adds in 11.6 points and 6.5 rebounds per contest.
The Ramblers opened their season with a 10-3 record in non-conference play, including a win over then-No. 5 Florida in early December. They proceeded to run through the Missouri Valley Conference with a 15-3 record, then hung on against Northern Iowa, Bradley, and Illinois State in the conference tournament. Ingram recorded 18 points and eight rebounds in the title game.
The first round of the tournament starts Thursday after the First Four games. The Final Four is set for March 31 at the Alamodome in San Antonio, and the national championship game will be played April 2.