Prop bets for Duke football vs. Lafayette

Senior Jalon Calhoun led all Duke receivers a season ago, and looks to start this year off strong.
Senior Jalon Calhoun led all Duke receivers a season ago, and looks to start this year off strong.

After starting off the season on the right foot, Duke looks to get another home victory versus Lafayette. Before the Saturday night kickoff in Durham, the Blue Zone has some can’t-miss prop bets:

Duke (-39.5) vs Lafayette

Duke became one of the biggest stories in the nation last Monday when the Blue Devils soundly upset then-No. 9 Clemson 28-7. Quarterback Riley Leonard led the offensive charge, with 98 rushing yards and an impressive, tackle-breaking 44-yard touchdown run. The Blue Devils’ special teams and defense put on a legendary performance, forcing two fumbles in the red zone and blocking two field goals, likely stealing upwards of 20 points from the Tigers. In the end, the flustered Clemson sulked off the field as Duke students streamed past, rushing the field to celebrate its first win over a top-10 opponent since 1989 — also against the Tigers.

Lafayette kicked off its season with a victory as well, defeating Sacred Heart 19-14. Sophomore running back Jamar Curtis could not be stopped, rushing for 181 yards on 9.5 yards per carry. After securing a 13-0 lead, Lafayette allowed Sacred Heart back into the contest with fourteen unanswered points. However, after a late score from Nahjee Adams, the Leopards’ defense stood strong, securing an interception in the endzone to win the game. 

Although it is possible that Duke may experience the hangover effect just five days after Monday’s stunner, the sheer talent gap between these teams cannot be understated. If the Blue Devils have the same problems stopping the run, expect Curtis to have a good day. However, Duke will be the first quality opponent Lafayette faces all year. Even in possible rainy conditions, the Blue Devils should outclass the Leopards by a lot. 

Pick: Duke (-39.5)

Over/Under 48.5 Points

While it’s probable that the Blue Devils score often, the same cannot be said about Lafayette. The Leopards struggled mightily in Week 1, only creating 292 total yards and 19 points. Lafayette runs a quarterback-by-committee, and neither signal caller performed particularly well last week. Starter Ryan Schuster had a 50% completion percentage, tossed for a measly 40 yards and was intercepted one time. In relief, Dean DeNobile only passed the ball three times, completing two of those attempts for 29 yards. Unless Lafayette makes extreme improvements, going up against a defense that made Clemson's offense look inept will not be a favorable matchup. Expect Duke to not allow a single touchdown.

Pick: Under 48.5

Jalon Calhoun Over/Under 69.5 Receiving Yards

Monday’s victory against Clemson had to be bittersweet for senior wide receiver Jalon Calhoun. The Greenville, S.C., native muffed the punt that led to the Tigers’ only points of the game, while also dropping a few key passes thereafter. However, Calhoun seemed to regain his composure later in the second quarter, when he beat a Clemson corner on a comeback route and secured a major fourth-down conversion — albeit after bobbling the ball. He finished the game with five catches for 32 yards. Whatever seemed to bother Calhoun, he can certainly play at a much higher caliber, creating 873 yards of offense last year to lead all Duke receivers. Against a much weaker opponent Saturday, expect the real Calhoun to show his true colors for the first time this season and wreak havoc in the secondary.

Pick: Over 69.5


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