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College Basketball Odds, Pick, Prediction: Duke vs. Florida State (Tuesday, Jan. 18)

College Basketball Odds, Pick, Prediction: Duke vs. Florida State (Tuesday, Jan. 18) article feature image
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Photo by Lance King/Getty Images. Pictured: Wendell Moore Jr. (Duke)

  • Duke travels to Tallahassee on Tuesday night as road favorites.
  • Is there value on the home dawg, or are Paolo Banchero and Duke the play despite the hostile environment?
  • Kody Malstrom breaks down the matchup and shares his best bet.

Duke vs. Florida State Odds

Tuesday, Jan. 18
9 p.m. ET
ESPN
Duke Odds
Spread Total Moneyline
-5
-110
144.5
-110o / -110u
-200
Florida State Odds
Spread Total Moneyline
+5
-110
144.5
-110o / -110u
+170
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute college basketball odds here.

The term inconsistency is defined in Webster’s dictionary as an inconsistent element or an instance of being inconsistent. You will also find my ability to stick to a diet in the definition as well, but that is neither here nor there.

Look even closer, and you will find “The ACC” in there as well.

Other than Duke, who is stepping up to challenge for the ACC throne and boost the ACC’s ability for multiple representations come March? I’m bullish on Miami (who very well may get exposed by UNC), Wake Forest just comfortably lost to Duke, and Notre Dame had to survive a close one to Howard.

Howard.

Florida State now steps up to put its name in the hat as a potential contender. Will there lengthy, pesky defense be able to give Duke enough fits to pull off the upset? Or will Duke remind everyone why the ACC is lackluster this year and why the Blue Devils are considered the conference’s only elite team?

Let’s find out.


Duke Blue Devils

When you think of Duke basketball this year, two players come to mind right away, and they are Paolo Banchero and Wendell Moore Jr. Both are absolute stars in the league this year.

Banchero should have a big game as this matchup suits him well. He does most of his damage on cuts and in the post while also being able to stretch the floor with his shooting.

With FSU not being the best rebounding unit, Banchero will be looking at plenty of second-chance opportunities by crashing the boards.

Scarier yet, Duke is showing signs of serious depth. Already ranked 10th in Adjusted Offensive Efficiency per Kenpom, Duke has seen an uptick in secondary scoring after their top two options. Most notably, center Mark Williams is coming off of a 19 point, 11 rebound performance.

Scoring from the bigs will be more important than ever as Florida State has built an identity around lengthy, lane clogging defenders. This will be even more important if the Blue Devils are forced to play more in the halfcourt as they have been shaky at a slowed pace.

Staying at an up-tempo pace will make this game interesting as Duke is one of the best offensive transition units while Florida State is near top-10 at defending in the transition.

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Florida State Seminoles

Florida State’s most glaring weakness this year has been its shooting. The defense has been lengthy, pesky, and court swallowing as usual, but the offense has taken a drastic step back in scoring production.

I wrote about Miami playing Florida State in hopes that the Seminoles’ shooting would improve against a horrific defense. They didn’t. I also wrote about Florida State playing Syracuse in hopes that their shooting would improve against another horrific defense. It did!

So what on earth should we expect when Florida State goes against a much improved defense in the Blue Devils who rank 19th in Adjusted Defensive Efficiency per Kenpom?

Shield your eyes Seminole fans because it may not be pretty. Losing Malik Osborne to injury drastically hurts as he is the second-leading scorer on the team.

With the loss of Osborne, Duke can target Caleb Mills with a variety of fresh defenders to limit his team-leading production. This forces Matthew Cleveland to step up in scoring, shooting 18.8% from three. Yikes.

If the Seminoles want a realistic chance of getting the home upset win, they will once again need to rely on their defense to keep it close. At an Adjusted Tempo of 171st in the nation, the Seminoles will look to slow this down to a halt and force Duke to beat them with their suspect halfcourt offense.


Duke vs. Florida State Betting Pick

As much as I would love to back the Seminoles, let alone anyone against Duke, I just simply cant get over how significant of a loss Osborne is.

Even if he plays, he will not be a full 100%, which will not nudge the needle for me at all.

Florida State already struggles to consistently score at a rate to be a contender, let alone lose their second-leading scorer and rely on inferior replacements to fill the void.

While the transition matchup will be interesting with Duke on offense and Florida State on defense, it’s the slower paced collisions that will have my interest.

Duke struggles to score in halfcourt, but that will be neutralized by being far superior at rebounding. Expect Banchero, Moore, and Williams to have big games with an increase in second-chance opportunities.

Florida State is simply outmatched this time around, making Duke anything less than -6 a play for me.

Pick: Duke -5

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