ACC action will take place tonight when Duke hits the road to take on Virginia. With this game likely coming down to the final possession, we’ll be looking at the player prop market in our college basketball betting picks.
Are the Duke Blue Devils surging? They have won three of the last four and now head to Virginia to face off with the Hokies in an ACC tilt.
Duke is fresh off a 2-point win against the Miami Hurricanes. But, as heavily documented by pretty much anyone around college basketball, it has struggled overall.
While the Blue Devils have been a disappointment, I’m not sure any team has been a more significant personal disappointment than VT. The Hokies have been in a big-time slide, losers in seven straight (all conference games), and in the process, going from a team that was expected to finish in the Top 4 of the ACC to one that’s unlikely to make the tournament .
What’s the best bet for this one? Find out in our college basketball picks and predictions for Virginia Tech vs. Duke.
Duke vs. Virginia Tech best odds
Duke vs. Virginia Tech picks and predictions
For whatever reason, the ACC has presented some soft lines in the prop market this season. I’ve had good success attacking them and will continue to do so with this play. I’m looking at Justin Mutts as the best bet in this game.
There are several X and O reasons why Mutts should succeed here, but as we’ve done with other players, let’s look at the situational aspect of things. Mutts is coming off a quiet usage game, taking only six shots and scoring eight points in a loss to Clemson.
We only have four data points this season where he has taken six or fewer shots (one was against Dayton, where he barely played due to foul trouble). Of those games in conference, it’s happened once, and he followed up with a 21-point performance.
After a low-usage game, Mutts usually has a ton of usage in the next game. Our handicap tells us that if that usage occurs, he’ll go Over this point total. This is a double-whammy for Duke. It has two prominent defensive warts: defending post-ups and defending the pick-and-roll.
The Blue Devils rank last in the ACC in post-up defense regarding points per possession and second to last according to field goal percentage. That’s music to Mutts’ ears. He is the primary post option for the Hokies this season, and it’s hard to argue against that.
On post-ups, Mutts is scoring .947 PPP and shooting 57% — both near the top of the ACC. Away from the post, Mutts is well suited to exploit Duke in pick-and-roll situations. He certainly hasn’t been the top pick-and-roll option for Virginia Tech, but you have to wonder — given his lack of guard play — if he’ll be more of a chance down the stretch.
He’s shooting 57% on pick-and-roll sets, which is far better than any of the guards on the roster. In this matchup, he can do what few other teams have done against Duke, exploiting Kyle Filipowski or Ryan Young in ball screen coverage. The numbers back it up, but a simple watch of Duke games shows that each player struggles when you move them away from the rim.
This is just an excellent spot for Mutts to score in bunches. Here’s to knowing foul trouble and a primarily typical game. If that happens, this should comfortably go over. Virginia Tech has the matchup, and the coach knows how to exploit it.
My best bet: Justin Mutts Over 13.5 points (-110 at DraftKings)
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Duke vs. Virginia Tech spread analysis
My projections don’t give me much help when picking a side here. Based on the value of home-court advantage, it gives the Hokies a 1-point win. Given that both of these teams have some benefits, I expect a back-and-forth game with ample opportunities to make good in-game bets. If I can get Virginia Tech moneyline at +105 or better, I’ll be grabbing it.
It’s a very different team at home, making the road/home splits so dramatic.
The Hokies are 10-3 in home games this season and have yet to win on the road. As someone who was a massive believer in this team to start the season, my faith in them – given the 10-9 start – is a bit shaken.
However, I still regard Mike Young as one of the best offensive minds in the ACC, and he has easy mismatches to target tonight. We’ve talked about Justyn Mutts already, but there are also notable advantages for Grant Basile in the post, along with Sean Pedulla in pick-and-roll.
Duke’s focus will be running 3-point shooters off the line, something it’s been quite good at this season. The Blue Devils are allowing just .72 points per possession to spot-up shooters. That’s incredible and one of the best in the country. I expect them to continue that trend, allowing too many driving lanes for Virginia Tech. This one will go down to the final possession, but I give the Hokies an edge at home.
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Duke vs. Virginia Tech Over/Under analysis
I don’t have a side here. My projections have a total of 137, and we’re seeing a total of 137 to 138. So overall, we’ve seen a buy on the Over. The total opened at 136.5 and has moved slightly across all significant books. According to our Covers Matchup page, the Over saw a whopping 94% of the money at the time of publication.
The trends for this one push in a different direction. Virginia Tech games have gone 4-1 to the Under in its last five games against a team with a losing road record. A good portion of that could be due to the Hokies’ dominant performances at home. The Hokies are capable of locking up Duke enough to keep this Under, but it will likely be decided by a single play or so.
Duke vs. Virginia Tech betting trend to know
The home team in this series is 11-2 in the last 13 meetings. Find more College basketball betting trends for Duke vs. Virginia Tech.
Duke vs. Virginia Tech game info
|Location:||Cassell Coliseum, Blacksburg, VA|
|Date:||Monday, January 23, 2023|
|Tip off:||7:00 pm ET|