Duke Blue Devils at Virginia Cavaliers Pick
If you enjoy college basketball, then buckle up for Saturday night’s showdown between the Virginia Cavaliers and Duke Blue Devils. These are two of the NCAA’s best teams, as Duke is currently ranked no. 2 and Virginia is ranked no. 3. Duke has an opportunity to sweep Virginia this season after beating them, 72-70, earlier this season. R.J. Barrett and Zion Williamson combined for 57 points in that win, as Williamson tacked on 9 rebounds to his stat line. There is a reason why these are the top two teams in the AFC. Duke has three players that will be drafted within the top 10 picks of the NBA draft next season between Williamson, Barrett and Reddish. That tandem has helped lead the Blue Devils to a 20-2 record and 8-1 conference record. Virginia is ranked ahead of Duke in the ACC with a 20-1 record and 8-1 record in the conference. Now they take on the only team that has figured out how to beat them this season.
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The Cavaliers are led by head coach Tony Bennett, who holds an overall record of 239-87. While he doesn’t have the resume of Coach K, Bennett is still one of the best head coaches in all of college basketball and will have his team ready Saturday night. A week removed from their last win over the Miami Hurricanes, Bennett knows his team has to beat teams like Duke if they want a chance of winning the NCAA tournament. The Cavaliers are led by three guards on offense. De’Andre Hunter averages 14.7 ppg, Kyle Guy averages 14.5 ppg and Ty Jerome is averaging 13 ppg.
The Cavaliers defense is going to make plays, but more importantly they’re going to need to score the ball more to keep up with Duke’s offense. Duke allowed 87 points to Gonzaga in their first loss and 95 points to Syracuse in their second loss. Virginia averages 72.9 ppg, which is about 14 less points than Duke on an average night, which means they’re going to need a couple players to go off.
Duke has Studs
Duke flips the script, as they are led by the three forwards mentioned earlier. Barrett averages 23 ppg and 7.2 rpg, Williamson averages 22 ppg and 9.4 rpg and Reddish averages 13.5 ppg. Williamson is a beast weighing in at 285 lbs and 6’7”. He has the ability to bully and punish opponents down low and then he can also shoot the ball. There really isn’t a player on this Virginia team, or in the country for that matter, that can guard Williamson. That’s what happens when you take on a future no. 1 overall pick in the NBA.
The Blue Devils are beatable however, as two teams have taken them down already this season. Virginia has always been known for their defense and they have proved that again this year allowing just 52.9 ppg. The only issue is Duke averages 87 ppg and the offense outweighed the defense in their first matchup.
- Get more details: Duke at Virginia NCAAB Match-up
Duke at Virginia Prediction 02/09/2019
This is expected to be a great basketball game. The Cavaliers are a very small favorite at home, but in the end, we expect the Duke Blue Devils to come away with the road upset win. This would be a massive win for Coach K and his young squad.