NCAA Basketball Picks: Duke Blue Devils vs. NC State Wolfpack
No. 1 Duke Blue Devils at No. 20 NC State Wolfpack
Saturday, 1/12/12, 12:00 PM EST, TV: ESPN
Opening Point Spread: Duke -3.5
Current Betting Line: Duke -3.5
Opening Total: 150
Current Total: 149
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker
Duke will try to open a season with 16 straight wins for the fourth time under Coach K, as it comes off an impressive 68-40 win over the Clemson Tigers as 15.5-point home favorites, while going UNDER the total for a third consecutive contest. The Blue Devils suffered a major blow in that game, with starting forward Ryan Kelly being out indefinitely with a foot injury. “He was playing the best basketball of his career,” stated Krzyzewski. It’s a major deal for a program that has received 86.8 percent of its scoring from the starting rotation during the 2012-13 NCAA basketball season. Duke is 9-1 ATS in its last 10 road games, which is important to consider when making your college basketball picks against the spread Saturday.
The Blue Devils will be playing their first true road game in this affair, as they’ve won seven of 10 games at PNC Arena. Duke’s last six losses in this series have come on the road or on a neutral floor. Offensively, the team is shooting 50.6 percent from 3-point range over the last five games, but Kelly was a major part of that success.
NC State is looking to go 3-0 in ACC play for the first time since 1988-89, as it has won nine straight games overall, including an 83-70 victory over the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackers as nine-point home favorites last time out. The Wolfpack will be led by guard Lorenzo Brown on the offensive end, who is leading the conference in averaging 6.7 assists per game. He has plenty of weapons around him, considering the team leads the country in shooting 53 percent from the field. NC State is 0-8 ATS at home in its last eight home games versus a team with a winning road record.
The Wolfpack are one of six teams nationally with six players averaging in double figures, while 51 percent of their scoring production has come from the post area. Forward C.J. Leslie is the player to watch in the paint, averaging a team-high 15.6 points per game, while Brown handles things from the perimeter in averaging 13.1.
Sports bettors will likely back the Blue Devils due to their 8-1 ATS record on the road versus a team with a winning home record, while the Wolfpack are 5-27 SU when taking on the top-ranked team in the country.
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