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NC State Wolfpack vs. Duke Blue Devils Predictions, Picks, Odds and NCAA Basketball Betting Preview – January 23, 2017

NC State Wolfpack vs. Duke Blue Devils Predictions, Picks, Odds and NCAA Basketball Betting Preview – January 23, 2017


North Carolina State Wolfpack vs. Duke Blue Devils Preview

Where: Cameron Indoor Stadium – Durham, NC

When: Monday, January 23, 2017 – 7:00 PM ET

Line: North Carolina State Wolfpack vs. Duke Blue Devils – view all NCAAB lines


College Basketball News and Previews


Betting on the North Carolina State Wolfpack (13-7, 2-5 ACC)

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Aside from being in a downward spiral, not much can be said about NC State basketball these past few weeks. We might be seeing the Wolfpack from “The Hangover” movies, and not the ones that started 11-2 and won six straight in late December.

Head coach Mark Gottfried and his boys are now losers in five of their last seven games (2-5 SU and ATS), highlighted by the 107-56 laugher they went through against the Tar Heels last January 18th.

What’s arguably more alarming is that this past Saturday, they played well, shot 51.6 percent from the field, and held the Demon Deacons to only 42.6 percent shooting… and still lost, 93-88.

Defense should obviously be the priority if they want to recover from the slump. Their D is giving up 84.7 PPG in the past seven contests, which is causing them to constantly drop in the defensive rankings – Kenpom.com currently places the team 173rd in the category.

On offense, the Wolfpack are decent. Through their five guys that put up 11 or more PPG, they are 34th in the nation in scoring (81.6 PPG) and 52nd in offensive efficiency (also via Kenpom.com). Freshman Dennis Smith is headlining the charge by showing good play on both ends of the floor. He’s is pacing the team in points (18.9 PPG), assists (6.6 APG), and steals (2.2 SPG).

NC State is 2-8 against Duke in the Gottfried era (6-4 ATS).

Betting on the Duke Blue Devils (15-4, 3-3 ACC)

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Like NC State, Duke hasn’t been at their best lately. They are only 3-3 (2-4 ATS) in their previous six games after racing to a 12-1 card, with two of those losses coming by 14 and 16 points.

The good news, however, is that they are building off a win (70-58 over Miami this past Saturday) and will once again play in front of the Cameron Crazies this Monday.

Luke Kennard should continue being the best player for the Blue Devils. The sophomore is showing that he isn’t coach Mike Krzyzewski’s classic “shooter,” as he also provides good defense. He’s leading the team in scoring (19.7 PPG) and treys (2.3 per game), and also adds 5.5 boards and 2.2 dimes per game.

Freshman Jayson Tatum and fifth-year senior Amile Jefferson are also providing great damage on both ends. Tatum is filling the stat sheet well (16.5 PPG, 6.3 RPG, 1.8 APG, 1.8 SPG, 1.5 BPG), while Jefferson is continuing to be an effective presence down low (13.1 PPG, 10.4 RPG, 1.5 BPG).

Duke’s mostly about buckets – 22nd in scoring (82.9 PPG) and 15th in offensive efficiency (Kenpom.com) – but they can also shine defensively. They are plus 16.8 in points (66.1 points allowed per game) and only allow opponents to shoot a mediocre 41.9 percent.

Writer’s Prediction

Duke wins, 81-76.

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JE
Written by JE

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