Talk about a showcase game, that’s what the Gonzaga-Duke matchup is on Black Friday. The two powerhouses are ranked No. 1 (the Zags) and No. 5 (the Blue Devils). Each features a potential No. 1 overall NBA Draft pick. College basketball doesn’t get much better than this, hence why Gonzaga vs. Duke betting predictions are needed. Read on to get expert advice on the game’s betting lines, as set by the best online sportsbooks.
Duke vs. Gonzaga Betting Picks
Before getting into our Duke vs. Gonzaga betting picks, we should mention a few things. Most importantly of all, this contest is being played on the neutral court of T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Therefore, you can throw out any idea of “home-court advantage.”
Being a marquee game as it is, it’s worth mentioning how you can watch the action unfold live on television. Here are the broadcasting details you need to know:
- What time does Duke vs. Gonzaga start? 10:30 pm EST
- What TV channel is Duke vs. Gonzaga on? ESPN (or WatchESPN app for streamers)
Over/Under 154 Points
|Over 154 points||-110||-110|
|Under 154 points||-110||-110|
This game will be decided in the paint, plain and simple. The strength of both teams lies in that paint area. For the Bulldogs, it’s Drew Timme and Chet Holmgren. The first is junior and was an All-American second-team selection a year ago, while the second is the highest-rated recruit (No. 1) in program history. The Blue Devils are similar in that regard, featuring a returnee (Mark Williams) and a one-and-done superstar freshman (Paolo Banchero).
Banchero and Holmgren is the duel everyone will have their eyes on. One of the two freshmen is likely going to be the top selection in next year’s NBA Draft, and no doubt about it, pro scouts will use this head-to-head game as part of its decision-making process.
The key to Gonzaga’s early-season success has been quick starts. In particular, they’ve found ways to get Timme open down low for easy buckets. Whereas prior Bulldogs opponents lacked formidable defenders down low, no such problem exists for the Blue Devils. Both Williams and Banchero hover around 250 pounds, which will surely make life difficult for the more wiry Timme down low.
We’re betting the under. We really do believe Duke has the size and physicality to challenge Timme and Holmgren all-game long. And on the other end of the floor, Holmgren will show off his uncanny ability to block shots too. Defense will reign supreme in this game so don’t hold your breath for a shootout.
|Duke Blue Devils spread||+7||+7|
|Gonzaga Bulldogs spread||-7||-7|
A few days ago, the spread was hovering around five points at the top NCAAB betting sites. But after Gonzaga blew out No. 2-ranked UCLA by twenty points on Tuesday in this same arena, bookies swelled the betting line up to seven points as it is now. So was the line shift an overreaction or a fair one? Well, a little bit of both.
On one hand, Bulldogs looked an entirely different class than the Bruins — which for those that remember, played in a double-overtime thriller during last season’s Final Four. Eight months after that game (after a whole lot of roster turnover), Gonzaga dominated on both ends of the court. Defensively, they held UCLA to 35 percent shooting. Offensively, they shot 56 percent from the field.
But it’s also an overreaction because, well, Duke isn’t UCLA. The Blue Devils match up far better with the Zags than the Bruins for the reasons we mentioned before — Banchero and Williams won’t be pushovers inside the paint. Jumping out to a 33-10 lead, as they did versus UCLA, won’t be easy to replicate for the Bulldogs against the Blue Devils.
Therefore, we’re taking Duke and the points on Friday night. We really do believe it’ll come down to the last few possessions, which is more than enough breathing room for the Blue Devils to cover the spread.
While we’ve spent this entire article arguing why Duke is a formidable opponent for Gonzaga (they most certainly are), we’re still not convinced they’ll earn the outright win. Aside from Kentucky, the Blue Devils have mostly beat up on mid-major programs. Therefore, the team consisting of mostly one-and-done talents is still rather raw. Rawer than we’d like for a moneyline pick.
The Zags won’t dispatch Duke as easily as they did Texas and UCLA, but a win will be a win. Take them on the moneyline, which admittedly doesn’t pay out great by itself. Your best bet is to pair the moneyline pick with one of our previous picks to earn a better payout.
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