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March Madness Betting – Wildcats vs. Blue Devils Free Sweet 16 Pick

2011 NCAA Tournament Predictions – Arizona Wildcats vs Duke Blue Devils Preview

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#5 Arizona vs. #1 Duke
SWEET 16 – NCAA TOURNAMENT BRACKET – WEST REGION
Date/Time: Thursday, March 24, 9:45 p.m. ET
Venue: Honda Center, Anaheim, CA
Broadcast: CBS
Arizona Wildcats vs. Duke Blue Devils Betting Lines from Sportsbook.com
Money Line: Arizona +360, Duke -480
Spread: Duke -8.5
Over/Under: 144.5
Arizona Wildcats (29-7)
Check Out Our Indepth CBB ATS Betting Stats For This Game —>
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Arizona has been one of the most fun teams to watch in the NCAA Tournament so far and many prognosticators expected that. First, the Wildcats slipped past Memphis 77-75 in a come-from –behind effort. Then, they beat higher-seeded Texas in an ugly one. Overall, Arizona has won six of seven. It also halted a horrible ATS losing streak by going 3-1 ATS over its last four contests.

Derrick Williams has been the force we expected him to be so far in the tourney, averaging 19.5 points and 9.5 boards. Arizona has also gotten helpful efforts at different times from Lamont Jones, Jordin Mayes and Solomon Hill over its first two games.

Still, the Wildcats have to worry about what happens if Duke contains Williams. Their secondary options have chipped in nice efforts but are still unreliable. Jones, for example, scored 18 points against Memphis but went 0 for 6 for zero points against Texas.

Duke Blue Devils (32-4)

To me, Duke remains in great shape in the NCAA Tournament. Some may point to the major scare it got from Michigan as a warning sign but I think it was just what the doctor ordered. Unlike Pittsburgh, Duke didn’t choke under the pressure of being a No. 1 seed. Online Sports Betting at Sportsbook

Nolan Smith wasn’t needed against Hampton in Duke’s first win but he showed he can be “the guy” against Michigan, dropping 24 points on the Wolverines. Kyle Singler provided his usual solid secondary support with 13 in that game.

Perhaps most encouraging for Duke is that Kyrie Irving hasn’t looked too rusty or hobbled as he works his way back from a toe injury. He played around 20 minutes in each of Duke’s first two March Madness games and totalled a useful 25 points.

Trends:

Under is 8-3 in ARZ last 11 vs. Atlantic Coast.
Over is 8-3 in ARZ last 11 NCAA Tournament games.
ARZ are 3-7 ATS in their last 10 games overall.
Over is 6-2 in DUKE last 8 Thu. games.
Under is 11-4 in DUKE last 15 overall.

The pick:

I can’t see Arizona beating Duke. Williams is great but Duke has three special players to throw at the Wildcats, not to mention a very solid supporting cast behind Smith, Singler and Irving.

That said, I like Arizona to beat the 8.5-point spread. It seems destined to make every game close and dramatic given Williams’ play. Also, the Wildcats were a top-10 three-point shooting team this season and a top-10 three-point defending team this season. They have the ability to erase leads and claw back in a hurry.

Go with Duke – but the Blue Devils will still have to sweat to win this one.

Arizona vs Duke prediction: Duke 75, Arizona 71

Money Line: Duke -480
Spread: Arizona +8.5
Over/Under: OVER 144.5

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About Shea Matthews

Shea Matthews the Senior Writer at CP. Lives and breathes sports. He made the transition from athlete to sports journalist at a young age, writing in TV & national papers. Shea applies his knowledge to sports betting + handicapping daily, and shares winning picks with the world.


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