NCAA Lacrosse Odds, Picks, Predictions: How to Bet Duke vs. North Carolina … Before Duke vs. North Carolina

NCAA Lacrosse Odds, Picks, Predictions: How to Bet Duke vs. North Carolina … Before Duke vs. North Carolina article feature image

Photo by Getty Images. Pictured: Duke players celebrate a goal.

Duke vs. North Carolina Odds

Duke Odds-145
North Carolina Odds+115
TimeSaturday, 2 p.m. ET
TVACC Network

Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook.

The weekend everyone has been waiting for is finally here! The bitter ACC rivals are finally squaring off. It’s almost time for Duke vs North Carolina … in college lacrosse. 

Yes, that's right. Before North Carolina and Duke square off in the Final Four, the Tar Heels and Blue Devils lacrosse teams will face off in Chapel Hill. So, let’s dive into this afternoon lacrosse matchup and see where the betting edge lies.

If you’re an avid bettor who’s new to lacrosse or a lacrosse fan who’s new to betting, check outmy guide on how to bet on lacrosse for some tips to use when placing a lacrosse bet.

North Carolina Tar Heels

The Tar Heels are currently ranked ninth overall in Inside Lacrosse’s media poll, but UNC’s offense this season has been marked by inconsistency. Led by Tewaaraton hopeful Chris Gray, the Tar Heels' offense has had periods of brilliance and moments of ineptness. Their offense has operated at as high as 40.5 percent efficiency and as low as 24.5 percent efficiency, according to Lacrosse Reference.

After starting the season 2-0, the Tar Heels were blown out by the Ohio State Buckeyes, 20-8. Then they followed up that loss with three big wins over Brown, Johns Hopkins and Denver where they scored an average of 15.3 goals per game. They even dropped six straight goals against the defending champion Virginia Cavaliers in the first quarter of what would eventually be a 15-11 loss.

The most notable sign of their inconsistencies was in their last game against unranked Bellarmine, where they trailed 8-7 through three quarters before shutting out Bellarmine in the fourth quarter en route to a 15-8 win. While the Heels came out with the win, this team still seems to have more questions than answers.

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Duke Blue Devils

Sixteenth-ranked Duke has also had its fair share of inconsistencies. After opening with a dominant 21-12 win over Robert Morris, Duke trailed Vermont 4-2 through two quarters. It was a tale of two halves, as the Blue Devils went on a 13-3 run that culminated in a 15-7 victory.

They’ve easily defeated then-ranked opponents like Denver and Delaware and been upset by teams like Loyola and Syracuse. The Blue Devils are a tough team to figure out at this point in the season.

Their offensive efficiency has seen even more dramatic highs and lows, operating at a high of 51.4 percent against Denver and a low of 26.7 percent against Jacksonville, according to Lacrosse Reference.

The Blue Devils should bounce back from a disappointing showing against Syracuse last week, where they were doomed by high turnover rate, struggles at the faceoff stripe and Mike Adler’s 34.5% save percentage.

I expect this offense to take better care of the ball and this defense to regroup against the Tar Heels.

Duke vs North Carolina Betting Pick

Despite both teams entering with records well above .500, both are in desperate need of another quality win — particularly against an ACC opponent. Both teams have been plagued by offensive inconsistencies and I don't expect these inconsistencies to be completely solved in this game.

While both teams have the talent on offense to put up a lot of points, I think the both will play conservative on the offensive end and take drawn out possessions. 

Both UNC and Duke tend to play at a slower pace than the Division I average, ranking 45th and 51st, respectively, compared to all 73 teams. I think this bodes well for this game to finish under what is the highest total of the weekend at 27.5. 

Furthermore, Duke has gone over this total just four times this season and the most recent time was more than a month ago. UNC has had even fewer games go over with only two this season surpassing 27.5 goals: a 20-8 loss to Ohio State in February and a 17-16 win over Denver on March 5th.

Finally, this total is also fairly high when we consider the last two matchups between these teams. In the two games that Duke and North Carolina played each other in 2021, the final totals were 23 and 27.

For this and all these reasons, I expect to see a lower-scoring affair and like this total to fall under 27.5.

Pick: Under 27.5

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