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Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs. Duke Blue Devils Pick-Odds-Prediction 1/4/14

Duke Blue Devils (11-2) at Notre Dame Fighting Irish (9-4)

College Basketball: Saturday, January 4, 2014 at 4:00 pm (Joyce Center)

The Line: Notre Dame Fighting Irish +3.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

TV: CBS

The Duke Blue Devils travel to Notre Dame to play the Fighting Irish on Saturday.

Duke improved to 11-2 on the year after beating Elon 86-48 earlier this week. The Blue Devils shot an impressive 48.5% from the field and 52.6% from the three-point line. Duke shot a poor 52.2% from the charity stripe. Andre Dawkins scored 15 points, Rodney Hood had 13 points and freshman Jabari Parker had 12 points and a season-high-tying 10 rebounds for Duke. Quinn Cook added 11 points and a team-high 4 assists. On the year, Parker averages a team-high 21.4 points and 8 rebounds per game for the Blue Devils. Hood is averaging 17. 2 points, while Cook averages a team-high 6.3 assists per game. The Blue Devils are averaging 85.2 points per game, 14th in the country, and are shooting over 50% from the field, which is 9th best in the country. This will be the Blue Devils first true road game of the year.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs. Duke Blue Devils Pick-Odds-Prediction 1/4/14

Mark Dolejs-USA TODAY Sports

Notre Dame improved to 9-4 on the year after beating Canisius in overtime 87-81 last week. Notre Dame shot 47% from the field and 42.1% from the three-point line, while shooting 81% from the charity stripe. Eric Atkins scored a career-best 30 points and Garrick Sherman finished with 17 points and a team-high 10 rebounds. On the year, Jerian Grant is averaging a team-high 19 points and 6.2 assists per game. However, Grant announced that he was no longer enrolled in school due to an academic violation so he will not play for the Fighting Irish anymore this season. Sherman is averaging 14.5 points and a team-high 7.6 rebounds per game. The Fighting Irish averages 80 points per game and are shooting 47.5% from the field. Notre Dame does a great job distributing the basketball, averaging 17.8 assists per game, and is a decent rebounding team with 36.5 boards per game this season. Notre Dame has only lost one game at home this year and that came against Indiana State back in November.

The last time these two teams played was 2002 when Duke beat Notre Dame on the road by seven points. A big concern for Duke is that this will be their first true road game. The Blue Devils have some young bodies on the team so they might be overwhelmed playing their first game in an opponent’s gym. However, Duke has played a bunch of neutral site games so I think that will help them in this one. The loss of Grant for Notre Dame is huge and there is no way I can back them until I see how they adjust to the loss. I’m taking Duke to win and cover on the road.

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Duke -3.5

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