Prop bets for No. 8 Duke men's basketball vs. Miami

Sophomore center Kyle Filipowski muscles his way to the basket in Duke's loss to North Carolina Feb. 3.
Sophomore center Kyle Filipowski muscles his way to the basket in Duke's loss to North Carolina Feb. 3.

No. 8 Duke is back in the Sunshine State for a primetime matchup against Miami. Before the contest, the Blue Zone is here with some can’t-miss prop bets:

Duke (-6.5) vs. Miami

Simply put, Coral Gables, Fla., has not been pretty for the Blue Devils in recent history, with their last contest being a 81-59 walloping at the hands of the Hurricanes last February. In that game, Kyle Filipowski, Mark Mitchell, Jeremy Roach and Tyrese Proctor combined for an underwhelming 27 points and 14 turnovers. However, at that point, Duke entered its matchup against Miami with a 17-6 and 8-4 conference record, struggling against ACC opponents. This year, the Blue Devils have picked up steam, and they are currently riding a four-game win streak. In those last four contests, they are 4-0 against the spread. 

In Duke’s previous matchup — away against Florida State — it was freshman Jared McCain who willed the Blue Devils to victory with 35 points, tying the freshman single-game scoring record. In this one, look for McCain’s freshman partner in the backcourt, Caleb Foster, to be a potential difference-maker. Miami has struggled defending shot-making guards all season, highlighted by Boston College guard Mason Madsen’s 25-point outing last week. In Wednesday night’s matchup, Duke has too much talent for the Hurricanes to overcome, albeit in a raucous environment.

Pick: Duke -6.5

Over/Under 149.5 Points

Along with the Blue Devils’ 4-0 performance against the spread, the under is on a four-game winning streak as well. Nonetheless, Duke’s next contest presents the recipe for a high-scoring matchup. All in all, Miami is the ACC’s 10th-best defense, allowing a rough 72.5 points per contest. Coupled with a high scoring offense at 77.9 points per game, the Hurricanes rely on their 37.2% shooting clip from beyond the arc to stay competitive. Junior guard Wooga Poplar leads Miami in 3-point shooting at an impressive 42.6%. 

The Blue Devils, on the other hand, have been impressive scoring the basketball all year. Head coach Jon Scheyer’s squad comes in ranked second in the ACC in scoring at 80.3 points per game. With Proctor’s availability in doubt, Duke will rely on Roach, McCain and Foster to stop the Hurricanes’ talented guards. Given the matchup’s potential for speed, transition baskets and turnovers, expect this one to be the game that ends the Blue Devils’ streak of unders. 

Pick: Over 149.5 total points

Kyle Filipowski over/under 15.5 points

There’s no doubt about it — Filipowski struggled mightily against Florida State. By the end of his 27-minute stint, the Westtown, N.Y., native totaled just eight points and eight rebounds, tying his third-smallest scoring total of the season. Nonetheless, expect the 7-foot center to bounce back in a big way Wednesday night. Miami consistently plays a noticeably small lineup, its lone forward being Norchad Omier, a 6-foot-7 fourth-year junior. If Omier lands in foul trouble, the Hurricanes will turn to freshman Michael Nwoko, who has struggled in his first year in Coral Gables. Looking to emulate his 21-point performance against Wake Forest, Filipowski can take advantage of the undersized Miami roster. 

Pick: Over 15.5 points


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