Introduce revenge and drama to one of the biggest college basketball betting rivalries in America, and we give to you Saturday night’s game between North Carolina and Duke.
The sixth ranked Tar Heels (26-4 SU) led 43-40 at half-time when these team met at Chapel Hill three weeks ago (Feb. 8), but poor three-point shooting (1/6) wouldn’t allow the 5.5-point favorite to pull away.
Meanwhile No. 3 Duke (26-4), who sit 20th overall with a 39-percent overall hit rate from beyond the arc, nailed 14 of 36 (38.9-percent) shots from three-point land to key the comeback and eventually win 85-84 straight-up on a bomb from Austin Rivers.
Duke was coming off a 78-74 overtime loss to Miami, one of just two home losses on the season, and the Blue Devils come into tonight’s contest riding a seven-game unbeaten streak (4-3 ATS).
Online sportsbooks opened the NCAA odds at Duke -1 with a total of 154 but the money on North Carolina has shifted the balance to the road team at Tar Heels -2 and 155.
North Carolina responded to the loss with six-straight victories of its own (5-1 ATS) and they are 11-1 in their past 12. Since getting blown out 90-57 by the Florida State Seminoles on Jan. 14, the Tar Heels are 6-0 straight-up vs. ACC opponents on the road but they’ve covered just three times.
Duke’ s played 10 of 15 home games to the “Over” this season and with the three-ball hitting a ridiculous 43-percent the past three games, it’s hard to imagine they’ll shy away from launching an assault from outside.
The Tar Heels are tough away from home but the average posted total during their recent six-game win streak was 144.8 and the average combined score was just 138.3.
Duke averages 79.0 points per game (10th overall) but North Carolina only gives up 66.1 points and in what should be a madhouse, they’ll work hard to control the pace of this game early.
The “Over” in February ended a six-game run of unders between these teams and today’s total matches the highest total since the run of unders began three years ago. We lean towards the Tar Heels getting revenge with a straight-up win and in what should be tight game, our money is going on the Under 155.
Check updated NCAA Odds