Michigan State Spartans vs. Duke Blue Devils Pick

March Madness Picks

Preview


#3 Michigan State Spartans
vs.
#2 Duke Blue Devils

Date/Time: Friday March 29, 2013 9:45 pm EST

Television: CBS

College Basketball Odds from Bookmaker.eu

Point Spread: Duke -2

Total: 134

 

Basketball Betting Game Trends

Michigan State Spartans

  • Michigan State is 4-1-1 ATS in their last 6 games following a ATS win.
  • Michigan State is 7-3 ATS in their last 10 Friday games.
  • Michigan State is 6-16-1 ATS in their last 23 games following a SU win of more than 20 points.
  • Michigan State is 1-4-1 ATS in their last 6 games following a S.U. win.

Duke Blue Devils

  • Duke is 7-2 ATS in their last 9 neutral site games.
  • Duke is 2-5 ATS in their last 7 vs. Big Ten.
  • Duke is 3-8 ATS in their last 11 games following a ATS win.
  • Duke is 2-6 ATS in their last 8 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
  • Duke is 2-6 ATS in their last 8 games vs. a team with a winning S.U. record.
  • Duke is 1-4 ATS in their last 5 NCAA Tournament games.
  • Duke is 1-5 ATS in their last 6 Friday games.

 

Two heavyweights will square off Friday night in Indianapolis for the chance to play in the Elite 8. Michigan State and Duke have been near the top of the college basketball world for quite some time thanks to their coaches. Tom Izzo and Mike Krzyzewksi are arguably the two guys who have been most consistently taking their teams to the Final Four out of any coaches in the nation. Now, their teams will meet in what should be a tremendous game this Friday night.

Game Overview:

The Michigan State Spartans have been to the Final Four six times since 1999 under the leadership of Izzo. They last made it in 2010, but hopes are high for this year’s team. The team had a scare when Keith Appling injured his shoulder in the win over Memphis last weekend, but Appling will reportedly play in this Friday’s game. He leads the team in scoring at 13.3 points per game. Freshman Gary Harris averages 13.1 points per game, and his amazing play on Saturday led the team to their big win over Memphis.

Michigan State is always known for their rebounding prowess, and the Spartans are great on the glass again this year. With Derrick Nix and Adreian Payne down low, the Spartans have two very big guys who are tough to move out of the lane. Both of them are very good passers out of the post. Nix has a strong low post game, while Payne has a nice post game as well as a great jump shot when he steps out. Those two will play a major part in Michigan State’s game plan against Duke.

Duke hasn’t been tested very much so far in this year’s tournament. The Blue Devils were ousted by Lehigh last year in a massive upset, but this year’s team has been much more consistent. Mason Plumlee and Seth Curry lead the team in scoring at 17 points per game each. Plumlee also leads the team in rebounding with 10 rebounds per game. He’ll have his hands full in the paint with Michigan State’s strong frontcourt in this one. Duke’s biggest strength is their outside shooting. No team in the country has more prolific outside shooters than the Blue Devils. Seth Curry, Quinn Cook, and Ryan Kelly all shoot above 40 percent from long range, and they put up a lot of shots from beyond the arc. As team the Blue Devils hit 40.3 percent from three-point territory.

Duke averages 78 points per game, and they can definitely outscore opponents when needed. In this game, it will probably need to be their defense that comes up big. Michigan State should have the advantage on the insider, but Duke can’t allow the Spartans to get a lot of easy looks. The Blue Devils have guarded well beyond the three-point line this year, but opponents have gotten to the basket quite a bit against them.

Free Pick: Michigan State +2

Playing in the best conference in the country has to help Michigan State here, and I like the team with the stronger interior game. This should be close, but I’ll take the Spartans.

Michigan State 67 Duke 66

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Kyle Hunter

Kyle Hunter

is full-timesports writer and sports handicapper. You simply won’t find someone who loves sports more than Kyle. Kyle considers college football and college basketball his two favorite sports. Kyle has earned many accolades for his highly successful handicapping, and he writes full-time for many top sports websites. Keep an eye out for high quality free sports analysis from Kyle!

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