College Basketball Predictions: Gardner-Webb at Duke Odds and Picks
by George Monroy - 12/16/2013
The Duke Blue Devils will be back in action after nearly two full weeks off. The team has not played since its huge win over the Michigan Wolverines during the beginning of the month and will now face the Gardner-Webb Runnin’ Bulldogs in a tune-up game before its big matchup against the UCLA Bruins on Thursday night. The Blue Devils are ranked No. 8 in the nation after falling to the Arizona Wildcats, and they have already faced a tough schedule filled with nation’s top schools.
Gardner-Webb started out the season with a 6-5 record and will be playing its biggest game of the year against Duke on Monday night. The team is not expected to face another Top-25 team for the rest of the season, and up until this point it has only had two games with actual spreads from the sportsbooks. Let’s take a closer look at the Gardner-Webb versus Duke matchup and figure out which side of the spread has the most value.
Gardner-Webb at Duke Betting Story Lines
Duke has played an insanely difficult schedule to start the year with matchups against the Kansas Jayhawks, Alabama Crimson Tide, Arizona Wildcats and Michigan Wolverines. The team is coming off an impressive 10-point win over the then-No. 22 Wolverines, and it won the game on the strength of its defensive play. Coach Mike Krzyzewski called the win “an outstanding defensive game” mainly because the team struggled on offensive throughout the matchup.
Freshman standout Jabari Parker continues to lead to team with 22.1 points, 7.8 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game. Rodney Hood and Quinn Cook are averaging 19.3 and 14.6 points, respectively, while the team as a whole is putting 86 points per game, which is ranked 14th in the nation. The team is also ranked seventh in the nation in shooting percentage and 32nd in assists per game with 16.1 a contest.
Gardner-Webb is coming off its biggest win of the season—a 52-point beat down of Clearwater Christian on Saturday. The team shot 70.5 percent from the field and grabbed 49 rebounds while dishing out 32 assists in the game. Gardner-Webb had five double-digit scorers in the matchup. Overall, Gardner-Webb is being led by guard Naji Hibbert, who is averaging 12.7 points per game. The team averages 73.3 points per game but grabs only 33.9 rebounds per contest.
Gardner-Webb at Duke NCAA Betting Odds and Key Trends
Duke opened as a huge 24.5-point favorite over Gardner-Webb, according to BetOnline. Gardner-Web is 10-1 ATS over its last 11 games following a SU win and 7-1 ATS during its last eight road games. The team has been red-hot in multiple ATS categories and is 6-1 during its last seven nonconference games and 4-1 over its last five road games against teams with winning home records. Gardner-Web is also 7-2 during its last nine overall games.
Duke is 7-2 during its last nine home games but only 2-5 during its last seven following a SU win. The team is also only 1-4 ATS after its last five games following an ATS cover and 1-7 ATS during its last eight Monday games,
College Basketball Predictions: Gardner-Webb at Duke Picks
Duke is a huge favorite heading into its matchup against Gardner-Webb and may be in danger of overlooking the school in favor of its huge showdown against the Bruins later in the week. The Blue Devils have also not played since Dec. 3 and could come into this matchup rusty and off of their game. However, Gardner-Webb has already lost by 24 points this season to Xavier, and this is a squad that has not faced much talent this year. The spread in this matchup is a big one, but Duke has already beaten teams by 34, 33 and 36 points this season. Expect Duke to be sharp and on-point throughout the matchup and earn another impressive blowout victory.
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Read more articles by George Monroy
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