Duke and Maryland Renew Rivalry in College Park

Duke Blue Devils at Maryland Terrapins, Comcast Center, College Park, MD
Wednesday, February 2, 2011, 9:00 pm Eastern, TV: ESPN
Opening Line: Duke -3
Current Line: Duke -4
Opening Total: 148
Current Total: 148
Money Line: Duke -180 / Maryland +160

St. John's Duke College Basketball Preview
Nolan Smith and Duke travel to Maryland to take on their ACC rivals. Duke is a 4 point favorite in the contest.

These two teams played at Duke just three weeks ago. It was a close game as Duke held on for a 71-64 win. Maryland was within 5 points with a minute and a half to go. Since that game January 9, Duke has lost 2 games on the road to Florida St and St. John’s. Last Sunday, St. John’s destroyed Duke at Madison Square Garden 93-78, and it wasn’t that close even. St. John’s led at one point in the second half by 25. Duke is still 19-2 overall and 6-1 in the ACC. The Blue Devils are ranked #5 in both polls. Duke now has to go to Maryland, where they lost last year 79-72. The Blue Devils hope history repeats itself. Last year Duke lost at another Big East team Georgetown by a wide margin. They went on to win 18 of their last 19 games after that en route to winning the National Championship. Duke hopes the same thing happens this year. Maryland is 14-7 overall, and 4-3 in conference. In addition to the win over Maryland Duke has wins overĀ  Marquette, Kansas St, Oregon, Michigan St, Butler, Miami-Florida, Virginia, NC State, Wake Forest, and Boston College. Maryaand has additional losses to Pitt, Illinois, Temple, Boston College, Villanova, and Virginia Tech. The Terps have wins over Penn St, Wake Forest, Clemson, Virginia, and Georgia Tech. Maryland won at Georgia Tech 74-63 Sunday night.

Duke has dominated the series recently winning 7 out of 8 straight up but the games have been close. Seven of the last 11 meetings have been decided by 10 points or less. Five of the last six games have gone under the total. Maryland is 17-7 ATS versus conference opponents the last 2 seasons, and 15-6 ATS after a conference game in the same span.

Duke has been playing without guard Kyrie Irving since early December who is out with a foot injury. Duke has three other players besides Irving who are averaging double digit scoring. Senior guard Nolan Smith is averaging 21. points to lead the team, 4.7 rebounds, 5.6 assists to lead the team, and 1.6 steals a game to also lead the team. Forward Kyle Singler is averaging 18 points, 6.1 rebounds, 1.6 assists, and 1.2 steals a game. Guard Andre Dawkins, averages 10.2 points and 2.2 rebounds a game. Mason Plumlee leads the team in rebounds with 8.6 a game and blocks with 1.8 a game. Duke is outscoring opponents 85-65 on the season. The Blue Devils are shooting 47.8% from the field and 39% from 3-point range. Duke opponents are shooting 40.6% from the field. Duke makes 75.9% of their free throws. The Blue Devils average 38.2 rebounds a game and have a rebounding margin of +3.6. The Devils average 15.5 assists and 12.7 turnovers a game. Duke forces 16.5 turnovers a game on defense. Duke averages 4.9 blocks and 8.6 steals a game.

Maryland is healthy and has no significant injuries. Maryland is outscoring opponents 77-63 on the season. The Terrapins shoot 47.8% from the field and 33.7% from 3-point range. Maryland is holding opponents to 38.2% shooting from the field. Maryland converts 64.1% of their free throws. The Terps pull down 40 rebounds a game and have a rebounding margin of +4.8. They average 16.7 assists and 14.1 turnovers a game. Maryland forces 16.5 turnovers a game on defense. The Terps averageĀ  7.2 steals and 5.1 blocks a game. Sophomore forward Jordan Williams leads the team in scoring with 17.1 points, rebounds with 11.9 a game and averages 1.1 blocks a game. He has 8 straight double doubles. Guard/forward Cliff Tucker averages 11.4 points, 3.8 rebounds, 2.7 assists, and 1 steal a game. Freshman guard Terrell Stoglin averages 9.6 points, and 2.6 assists a game. Adrian Bowie leads the team in assists with 3.6 a game and scores 9.6 points a game. Sean Mosley leads the team in steals with 1.2 a game. Dino Gregory leads the team in blocks with 1.5 a game.

Maryland has a slight edge in rebounding, but Duke is the better team in every other area. I don’t see Duke losing two games in a row, and will be out for revenge after such an embarrassing performance last time out. Maryland has won three straight games but have beaten Clemson, Virginia, and Georgia Tech, not exactly a murderer’s row.

Our college basketball handicappers are red hot in 2011. Don’t miss out on any more winners as we get closer and closer to March.

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