9:45 PM ET, March 27, 2015
NRG Stadium, Houston, TX
With only a could spots left in the Elite Eight, the No. 1 Duke Blue Devils (31-4, 20-14-1 ATS) face the No. 5 Utah Utes (26-8, 21-11-1 ATS) in the NCAA Basketball Sweet Sixteen at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas. The winner will meet the winner between UCLA and Gonzaga, which will be played tonight in Houston at 7:15 ET.
Experts using bookie software of our well trusted PPH providers have Duke a 5-point favorite with the number at 134. Players using sites for local bookies betting on the number know that Duke is 18-15-0 against the total while Utah is 15-16-1.
The Blue Devils won both of their previous tournament games SU and ATS, defeating No. 16 Robert Morris 85-56 as a huge 22½-point favorite then taking care of San Diego State 68-49 as 9-point favorites. Both games finished with an UNDER result.
Pay Per Head agents watched Jahlil Okafor, who led Duke all season with an average of 18.1 points and 8.7 rebounds, score a game high 26 against San Diego adding 6 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal and 3 blocks. Justin Winslow helped in the win with a game high 12 boards with 13 points, 5 assists, 4 steals and 3 blocks.
Utah made it to the Sweet Sixteen with SU and ATS wins over No. 12 Stephen F. Austin, 57-50 as 6½-point favorites, and No. 4 Georgetown 75-64 as a 4½-point favorite.
Utah, who hasn’t made it to the tournament since 2009 and the Sweet Sixteen since 2005, were led by Brandon Taylor with 14 points while adding 3 rebounds, 5 assists and a steal versus Georgetown. Season long leading scorer Delon Wright pitched in with 12 points, 5 boards, 5 assists, a steal and a block.
Bettors using sites for local bookies looking for bookie advice should know the Blue Devils score an average of 80.37 points per game, good for 3rd in the nation, with Utah scoring 71.74. However, the Utes hold a significant lead when looking at the defensive side of the ball allowing 56.94 points per game, 7th in the nation, compared to the Blue Devil’s 64.83.
Bettors using Pay Per Head sites such as our great providers to put action on the total need to know the UNDER has paid out in 7 of Utah’s last 10 games, while the UNDER has paid out in 6 of Duke’s last 7 and 6 of their last 8 played in the NCAA Tournament.
I think this will be a very close game that may need overtime to decide the winner. The Blue Devils have a great starting lineup, with their “Big 4,” (Okafor, Cook, Winslow and Jones) but after that their depth is questionable.
Besides Delon Wright, two Utes to watch for are Brandon Taylor and Jakob Poeltl. Poetlt is a 7-foot prospect from Austria who may be able to hold down Okafor in the post. Add that to the fact that Utah is playing very balanced basketball on offense and defense, I predict Utah to upset Duke.
Prediction: Utah Utes 67 – Duke Blue Devils 66
Written by: R Keough