NCAA Basketball Picks: Duke vs. Miami

Joe Freda

Saturday, March 2, 2013 2:13 PM GMT

Saturday, Mar. 2, 2013 2:13 PM GMT

The No. 3 Duke Blue Devils have cashed with a 5-1 spread record in their last six home dates. Will the Blue Devils roll with revenge in Durham, or can Miami pick up the road cover?

Saturday’s big Rematch: No. 3 Duke vs No. 5 Miami

They've been putting up 86 PPG in the span’s most recent four affairs. Saturday’s college basketball betting has Mike Krzyzewski’s troops hosting an anticipated rematch with the No. 5 Miami Hurricanes, who handed a 90-63 defeat to Duke, six weeks ago.

Duke edged out at Virginia

The Blue Devils lost some momentum with Thursday’s 73-68 defeat as one-point dogs to the Virginia Cavaliers, picking up a second loss in four games. Duke was held to a 39.6 percent night of shooting from the floor, while being outrebounded, 33-21.

Blue Devils mates Seth Curry and Quinn Cook united for 50 points, while senior Mason Plumlee logged seven boards and the team’s sole block. Duke’s Tyler Thornton notched two of his side’s four steals, while adding a pair of assists in 18 minutes of action.

The battle’s 141 points jumped beyond the ‘total’ of 130, moving the OVER to 3-1 in the Blue Devils’ last four games. Duke sank 18-of-20 free throws, while Curry and Cook combined to drill 8-of-17 buckets from three-point land.

Hurricanes, Larkin storm past Hokies

Miami cruised for its 14th win in Atlantic Coast Conference play, holding off the Virginia Tech Hokies with Wednesday’s 76-58 victory as 16-point home ‘chalk.’ The Hurricanes connected from the field at 50 percent, jumping out to a 38-19 halftime lead.

Miami’s Shane Larkin led his squad’s scoring with 22 points, while adding six assists and two steals. Hurricanes mates Reggie Johnson and Kenny Kadji united for 14 rebounds and three blocks.

The lopsided affair’s combined 134 points leaped above the closing ‘total’ of 133, lifting the OVER to 6-3 in the Hurricanes’ last nine contests. Miami was edged out in boards, 26-25, while holding the Hokies to a 3-for-16 night beyond the arc.

[gameodds]14/222650/43/us[/gameodds]

Back Miami as a road dog

Bookmaker.eu opened Duke as a 6 ½-point home favorite on their basketball odds board, with early wagers on the Blue Devlls driving the number north a ‘hook’ to seven. The ‘total’ was first set at 135 ½, remaining unchanged with betting initially mixed.

I am taking the points here with Miami, looking for Jim Larranaga’s squad to get the money in hostile territory. The Hurricanes have cashed with a 3-0 spread record in their trio of spots as road underdogs, including January’s 68-59 upset of the North Carolina Tar Heels.

Miami will face its share of top shooters from the Blue Devils, but brings a squad to Durham that can hold its own defensively. The Hurricanes have held foes to 62.5 PPG in their eight road matchups against ACC rivals, while mates Shane Larkin (2.1 SPG) and Durand Scott (1.7 SPG) rank among the conference’s top three for steals.

Larkin united with mate Julian Gamble for 10 rebounds each in January’s win over the Blue Devils and should be able to grab their share again here. Miami has a 3-0 spread record in its last three road spots against Duke, including last February’s 78-74 overtime win.

The underdog is 6-1-2 ATS in the last nine meetings between these foes, dating back to 2008. Look for the premium to be set too high again here, giving Miami another cashed ticket.

NCAA Picks:  Miami Hurricanes +7 (Bookmaker.eu)

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