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Duke vs. Virginia Tech Predictions, Odds

 

  • January 12, 2020
  • By Thom Cunningham
  • VegasInsider.com

An important ACC clash on Tuesday night sees a Top 25 matchup between the Virginia Tech Hokies and the Duke Blue Devils. Tip is set for 7 p.m. (ET) from the Cassell Coliseum in Blacksburg, Virginia.

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WHERE TO BET DUKE-VIRGINIA TECH

Duke-Virginia Tech Betting Odds

Line Movements

  • Spread: Virginia Tech -1.5
  • Money-Line: TBD
  • Total: 140.5

Odds Subject to Change

The game opened as a straight pick em, but the Virginia Tech Hokies have seen a slight uptick as a -1.5-point home favorite. It makes sense to see the needle lean towards the Hokies, as Duke has failed to cover the spread in six of its seven games this season.

The point total is set at 140.5, which Duke is split on this season (3-3-1). Virginia Tech has gone OVER the point total in nine of its last 11 games however, a much more convincing trend to lean wagers on.

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Betting Analysis – Duke Blue Devils

Straight Up - SU, Against the Spread - ATS, Over-Under (O/U)

  • SU: 5-2
  • ATS: 1-6
  • SU - Home: 4-2
  • SU - Away: 1-0
  • O/U: 3-3-1

Oy vey, where to begin. The good news for Duke is that they're 5-2 with four underclassmen leading the team in points per game. Winning five of seven with an extremely young team is never a bad thing. However, one of the four underclassmen (Jalen Johnson) is out. Also, the best win for Duke so far this season is Notre Dame.

Duke lost to Michigan State and Illinois this season, two ranked opponents who will be in March Madness. The Blue Devils escaped in a one-point win over Boston College and didn't look great against Wake Forest either, the two worst schools in the ACC this season. There isn't much to like about Duke, other than the potential.

Matthew Hurt, DJ Steward and Jeremy Roach can only get better the more they play together. Hurt averages nearly 20 points per game, while Johnson saw 8.3 rebounds per game before missing time. Duke seems like a great bet, in a year or two - but not in this one.

Duke averages 75.9 points per game, but allows 71.1 themself. Their defensive efficiency rating ranks 206th out of 345 schools, while their offense ranks 110th. They rank 245th in defensive rebounds per game, and shoot a miserable 67% from the charity stripe - which ranks 251st.

Duke does get steals, averaging 9.6 per game which is 12th in the nation. Also, they can score buckets despite not being able to stop them. Duke sees 28.9 field goals made per game which is 59th-best in the nation. This team just needs to gain conviction in physical play, and they should be fine moving forward. When that moment comes only time will tell, but from a betting stand point it's probably not coming in Blacksburg against an Aluma-led Hokie team.

Betting Analysis – Virginia Tech Hokies

Straight Up - SU, Against the Spread - ATS, Over-Under (O/U)

  • SU: 9-2
  • ATS: 7-4
  • SU - Home: 8-1
  • SU - Away: 1-1
  • O/U: 9-2

Virginia Tech is still somewhat underappreicated in the college basketball landscape. Despite Villanova not playing a game since late-December, the Hokies are the only team to beat Jay Wright's squad this season. Mike Young continues to show why he is one of the most under appreciated coaches in college, a proven winner at more than one program.

It's all about the players though, which Virginia Tech has plenty of. Keve Aluma averages about 15 points per game to go along with seven rebounds, which leads the team in both categories. Tyrece Radford helps on the glass as well, averaging roughly six rebounds per game.

The one thing Virginia Tech does very well is shoot the three-point shot, reminiscent of Young's offense at Wofford. The Hokies attempt the 75th-most three-point shots per game in the nation, making 8.7 which is 69th-best in the country. Jalen Cone becomes the big difference maker from beyond the arc, averaging 3.4 per game (39%).

The Hokies also play terrific defense, only allowing about 65 points per game, which ranks 66th nationally. The efficiency is better on offense for Virginia Tech however, but overall this is an 'under-the-radar' team with potential to make noise in March.

Inside the Stats – Duke Blue Devils

  • PS/G: 75.9 (112th)
  • PA/G: 71.1 (199th)
  • Off Rtg: 106.4 (110th)
  • Def Rtg: 99.8 (206th)

Inside the Stats – Virginia Tech Hokies

  • PS/G: 75.3 (122nd)
  • PA/G: 64.9 (66th)
  • Off Rtg: 110.5 (46th)
  • Def Rtg: 95.3 (121st)

Key Players to Watch

  • DUKE - Matthew Hurt (19.6 PPG, 7.9 RPG)
  • DUKE - DJ Steward (14 PPG, 5.3 RPG)
  • VT - Keve Aluma (15.5 PPG, 7 RPG)
  • VT - Nahiem Alleyne (10.5 PPG)

Duke-Virginia Tech Predictions

Virginia Tech is the better team and playing at home, so feel free to take the small -1.5-point spread or even SU. The 9-2 O/U for Virginia Tech is difficult to ignore however, and the safest odds to play with information given entering the game.

Duke should flirt with 70 points or more, as anything under 60 is highly unlikely. Virginia Tech will also flirt with 70, but given the home court comforts and awful Duke defense it seems justified the Hokies will get to 75. The OVER seems like the best play to make at 140.5, but taking Virginia Tech to win is hard to argue especially when you consider Duke's hideous 1-6 ATS record this season.

  • Score Prediction: Virginia Tech 77 Duke 74
  • Best Bets: OVER
  • Best Bets: Virginia Tech -1.5

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