College Basketball Odds & Picks for Duke vs. Notre Dame: Wednesday’s Betting Value on Fighting Irish

College Basketball Odds & Picks for Duke vs. Notre Dame: Wednesday’s Betting Value on Fighting Irish article feature image
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Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: The Duke mascot.

  • Notre Dame will battle Duke in Wednesday night action on the hardwood.
  • Neither Duke nor Notre Dame is off to a terrific start in the 2020-21 college basketball season, but there seems to be more encouraging signs for the Fighting Irish than for the Blue Devils.
  • Tanner McGrath explains why he thinks Duke is overvalued in Wednesday night's ACC headliner.

No. 21 Duke vs. Notre Dame Odds

Duke Odds -2.5 [BET NOW]
Notre Dame Odds +2.5 [BET NOW]
Moneyline -145/+120 [BET NOW]
Over/Under 146.5 [BET NOW]
Time Wednesday, 9 p.m. ET
TV ESPN
Odds as of Wednesday evening and via BetMGM. Get an INSTANT $500 deposit match at BetMGM today.

The ACC looks wide open this season.

Clemson is 5-0 with one of the best defenses in college basketball. Syracuse, Louisville, North Carolina and Virginia Tech all have four wins. Plus, Florida State and NC State are both 3-0.

Meanwhile, Duke is 2-2 with two unimpressive wins and two unimpressive losses. Mike Krzyzewski’s team is looking inexperienced and uninspired.

Notre Dame also enters this game 2-2. However, it just pulled off a road upset victory over Kentucky. Kentucky may only be 1-4 this season, but that doesn’t make Notre Dame’s victory less impressive.

This line opened with Duke as 3.5-point favorites, so the Blue Devils have taken some early money. While betting against Duke is always daunting, there looks like there could be some value backing the home underdog on Wednesday night.

Duke Blue Devils

What is happening in Durham this season?

Duke is 0-4 against the spread (ATS), beat Coppin State by just 10 points in their home opener and lost as home favorites to both Illinois and Michigan State.

KenPom has the Blue Devils as a top-20 team in both offensive and defensive efficiency. However, I don’t understand the reasoning.

Offensively, they boast just the 125th-best eFG% in the nation, are only shooting 32.7% from 3-point range and 65.6% from the free-throw line while owning an assist-to-turnover ratio of .98.

Defensively, the Blue Devils are allowing 70.8 points against per game (184th in the country) with a 48.5 eFG% against (136th in the country). Teams are shooting almost 20 3-pointers per game against them, and they are converting those shots at a 33.3% clip.

To make matters worse, their best player — freshman forward Jalen Johnson — won’t be playing due to a foot injury. For Duke to beat Notre Dame, it’ll need efficient production from Matthew Hurt and Wendell Moore.


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Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Notre Dame’s win against Kentucky was impressive but not infallible.

At the 10-minute mark of the first half, Notre Dame led Kentucky, 31-9. After entering halftime with a 22-point lead — the largest halftime deficit ever for Kentucky at Rupp Arena — the Fighting Irish got outscored 37-16 in the second half. They managed to squeak out a 64-63 victory by producing 12 free throw attempts to Kentucky’s six.

Notre Dame’s two losses came against two great Big Ten teams in Michigan State and Ohio State. However, the Irish played well in both, scoring 70 in the 10-point loss to Michigan State and 85 in the five-point loss to Ohio State.

Notre Dame can score in bunches because it shoots the 3 well. The Irish attempt 22.3 3-pointers per game and make 41.6% of them, which is 17th-best in the country.

Two areas in which Notre Dame has an advantage over Duke are height and experience.

Notre Dame’s average player height of is seventh in the country, and its starting lineup features four juniors and one senior. Meanwhile, Duke will be starting three freshmen and two sophomores on the road.

Notre Dame’s unquestioned leader is junior point guard Prentiss Hubb, who averages 21.3 points and 4.3 assists per game on 40.3% shooting. Hubb scored 18 points on 8-for-17 shooting from the field in the win over Kentucky.

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Betting Analysis & Pick

Duke is overvalued in this game.

The 2-2 Blue Devils are laying 3.5 points in a road conference game without their best player.

Duke’s small, young lineup is traveling to play a bigger, more experienced team. Coach K’s résumé is the only reason it’s favored in this game.

Since 2012-13, the Blue Devils are just 25-33 ATS as a road favorite, including a 1-7 ATS mark in their last eight contests in this spot.

Honestly, I would project this game closer to a pick’em. Therefore, I’ll be playing Notre Dame +4 and would play it down to +2.5.

Pick: Notre Dame +4 (down to +2.5).

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