Duke Blue Devils: ACC Betting and Handicapping Spotlight

Doc MosemanCorrespondent IJanuary 17, 2012

NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 10:  Head coach Mike Krzyzewski of the Duke Blue Devils coaches against the Washington Huskies at Madison Square Garden on December 10, 2011 in New York City.  (Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images)
Chris Trotman/Getty Images

Team Overview

The Duke Blue Devils moved to 15-2 straight up on the year with a 73-66 victory over Clemson this past Sunday as a 6.5-point road favorite. The win was Duke’s eighth in its last nine games, and it snapped a three-game skid against the spread that started with a stunning 78-73 loss to Temple on January 4 as a 7.5-point road favorite.

The Blue Devils are perfect 8-0 at home this season and 7-2 in road and neutral-site games. Duke is off to a 3-0 start in conference play, with every other team having at least one loss.

While there are a number of teams that still hope to contend for this year’s ACC regular season title, in all likelihood it will be another neck-and-neck battle with No. 8 North Carolina for bragging rights as the top team in the conference.


Key Statistics

Duke is once again one of the top-scoring teams in the nation with an average of 80.3 points per game. It is also doing a good job defensively by holding its opponents to an average of 68.5 points a game. Duke has given up more than 80 points just once this season in an 85-63 loss to Ohio State as a 7.5-point road underdog on Nov. 29.

It is shooting 49.6 percent from the field, which is currently ranked 12th in the nation. The Blue Devils have struggled a bit under the boards with an average of just 35.5 rebounds a game, but their 40.2 percent shooting from three-point range is also one of the best in the country.

Individually, Duke has four players scoring in double-figures, led by Austin Rivers’ 13.8 points a game.

Seth Curry and Ryan Kelly are each averaging just over 12 points a game and shooting over 45 percent from the field. Curry has been nearly automatic from the free-throw line as he has been converting on 89.1 percent of his attempts, and Kelly has been deadly from beyond the arc, hitting 44.7 percent of his shots.

The Duo of Mason and Miles Plumlee have provided the bulk of the production under the boards with a combined 17 rebounds per game. Mason is also averaging 11.5 points a game, with Miles chipping in an average of seven points as well.


Betting Trends

The Blue Devils have had great success on the court so far, but they have not been the best team to wager on this season, with an overall record of 7-10 ATS. They are an even 4-4 ATS at home this season, but a costly 1-3 ATS in four road games and 2-3 ATS in five neutral-site games.

Duke is 6-8 ATS in non-conference play and off to a 1-2 start ATS in the ACC.

The total has gone "over" in 11 of Duke’s 17 games overall, but it has stayed "under" in three of its last five games. The total has gone over in five of the Blue Devils' eight home games this season and in three of four games on the road.


Upcoming Games

Duke’s next outing is this Thursday night against the Wake Forest Demon Deacons, who are 10-7 overall and 1-2 in the ACC. This Saturday, they face a dangerous Florida State Seminoles team that destroyed North Carolina 90-57 last Saturday as six-point home underdogs.

The Seminoles are 11-6 overall and 2-1 in conference play. Both of these games will be played in the friendly confines of Cameron Indoor Stadium before the Blue Devils have to go back on the road to face Maryland (12-4, 2-1) next Tuesday night.