I just finished reading an article in Sports Illustrated about home field advantage that is actually an excerpt of Tobias Moskowitz and L. Jon Wertheim's new book Scorecasting. In it they discuss home court advantage and referees in particular. Well, then I looked at the box scores for tonight's Horizon League games and check out the doozy in the UIC vs. Milwaukee game.
Home court bias and the Horizon League
The Flames shot 22 fewer foul shots. The fascinating thing is that occurred the committed just five more fouls than Milwaukee. UIC shot 9-12 from the line and Milwaukee shot 23-34. That difference of 14 points from the line accounts for the entire 12-point margin in the 87-75 Panthers victory.
In Green Bay though Loyola had nothing to complain about. The Ramblers attempted 24 free throws compared to 29 for the Phoenix and Loyola benefitted from the fact that freshman center Alec Brown was in foul trouble for most of the night. Of course Brown, who Loyola attempted to recruit, ended up going 3-4 from the field and 5-7 from the line while he was in the game for 11 important points.
Loyola shook things up tonight by putting Shaun Adams in the starting lineup, but it didn't have much of an effect on the final score. It seems like that's an act of desperation as Jim Whitesell still hasn't quite figured out how to work without Jordan Hicks again. UIC also had to shuffle its lineup, but that's because Zavion Neely has been declared academically ineligible and will not be able to play for the rest of the season.