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UCF vs. Duke - 3/24/19 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Game
UCF vs. Duke
Date & Time Sunday March 24, 2019, 5:15 PM (EDT)
Location
Colonial Life Arena
Columbia, South Carolina
The Line
The Line: Duke -13 -- Over/Under: 143.5
TV Channel
CBS
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Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

The UCF Knights and Duke Blue Devils meet Sunday in the second round of the college basketball NCAA Tournament at the Colonial Life Arena.

The UCF Knights can advance to their first ever Sweet 16 by pulling off a monster upset. The UCF Knights are averaging 72.2 points on 46.4 percent shooting and allowing 64.1 points on 39.2 percent shooting. B.J. Taylor is averaging 16 points and 3.3 assists while Aubrey Dawkins is averaging 15.1 points and 5.1 rebounds. Tacko Fall is the third double-digit scorer and Collin Smith is grabbing 5.1 rebounds. The UCF Knights are shooting 36.1 percent from beyond the arc and 64.7 percent from the free throw line. The UCF Knights are allowing 31 percent shooting from deep and are grabbing 32.9 rebounds per game. The UCF Knights have split their last six non-home games.

The Duke Blue Devils look for their seventh Sweet 16 appearance since 2010. The Duke Blue Devils are averaging 83.5 points on 47.8 percent shooting and allowing 67.4 points on 39.4 percent shooting. RJ Barrett is averaging 23 points and 7.7 rebounds while Zion Williamson is averaging 22.2 points and two assists. Cam Reddish is the third double-digit scorer and Tre Jones is dishing 5.3 assists. The Duke Blue Devils are shooting 30.5 percent from beyond the arc and 68.9 percent from the free throw line. The Duke Blue Devils are allowing 29.3 percent shooting from deep and are grabbing 39.1 rebounds per game. The Duke Blue Devils have won their last four non-home games.

The Knights are 12-4 ATS in their last 16 non-conference games, 4-1 ATS in their last 5 neutral site games and 9-2 ATS in their last 11 games overall. The Blue Devils are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 non-conference games, 3-1-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS loss and 1-4-1 ATS in their last 6 games overall. The under is 36-16-2 in Blue Devils last 54 overall. The under is 4-1 in Knights last 5 overall.

I mentioned in my Duke - North Dakota State writeup that I don't have much luck with the Blue Devils and big chalk, and they fell just short of covering the big number. I also mentioned in my cinderella article that UCF has a chance to be one of those bracket busting teams. I was hoping for this matchup. The UCF Knights are one of the best defensive teams in the country, as they have unreal length and post presence, and I don't care who you are, easy buckets don't take place. In fact, only two of UCF's eight loses this season were decided by double digits. The Duke Blue Devils won't be able to get the easy buckets in the paint they're used to getting, and lord knows they don't shoot well enough from the outside, as they're 337th in the country in three-point shooting. I'm not saying UCF wins this game outright, but it's sure to be a competitive game. UCF doesn't allow opposing teams to run away with it often.

Pick:
UCF +13

Randy Chambers has been with Sports Chat Place since 2014 and covers everything from the NFL to WNBA and tennis. Nobody works harder in this business in terms of content produced and amount of sports covered. Formerly a lead college football writer with Bleacher Report and has had his work featured at Fox Sports, CBS Sports and various other outlets.

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