Will lightning strike twice for Oral Roberts? After shocking the nation by beating Ohio State as a 15 seed, Oral Roberts is once again back in the dance as a 12 seed against the Duke Blue Devils. Their odds are far greater this time around to get the upset as they are currently a +6 underdog. Duke is a far more formidable opponent, yet still vulnerable to the Golden Eagles fast paced scoring. With Duke having to match the scoring pace, my prediction is that the over cashes with ease in this thrilling matchup.
Oral Roberts Vs. Duke Prediction
Note that I also have a piece on Oral Roberts +7.5, but that number has since crashed down to +6 and zapped the value out of the number. That is a good sign for our over ticket as bettors are backing the idea of Oral Roberts finding offensive success against the Blue Devils. Especially since the Golden Eagles defense has been non-ideal, ranking 107th in Adjusted Defensive Efficiency per Kenpom.
With Oral Roberts weak defense, Duke is all but assured to find consistent scoring opportunities with the way they run their offense. They run an inside-out style of offense, heavily having the ball flow through star big man Kyle Filipowski. Oral Roberts can match him with size in the interior, yet Filipowski is more of a scoring threat than anything Golden Eagle Connor Vanover has had to deal with.
Especially if Filipowski decides to take him off the dribble from the perimeter, proving to be efficient in both stopping and popping or driving to the rim. The defensive attention he will command will draw defensive help to the interior, leaving Duke’s secondary scorers open at the perimeter. This was once an area of concern for Duke as the Blue Devils failed to help out Filipowski in his scoring efforts, now having players step up in scoring over the past few weeks.
Jeremy Roach, Tyrese Proctor, and Mark Mitchell have been a revitalization for the Duke offense, coming into their own as reliable scorers that defenses have to respect. Mitchell and Roach especially, hovering around the perimeter and connecting at 36.5% and 34.1% from three. Because of their emergence, Filipowski has had more freedom in the interior to continue doing work as a lethal low post scoring threat.
Oral Roberts Vs. Duke Prediction: Over 145.5
Oral Roberts Vs. Duke Odds
Oral Roberts will not go unnoticed this time around as oddsmakers opened the Golden Eagles as a +7.5 underdog. Bettors are backing the idea of them potentially pulling off the upset once again, taking Oral Roberts down to +6 as of writing. Their offense continues to be lethal behind star guard Max Abmas as he is more than capable of stretching out Duke’s defense. The current number is sadly in line with projections, having little to no value left at +6.
As for the total, points are expected to be scored at a fast pace as oddsmakers opened the total at 144.5. Bettors were quick to hammer the over before it was widely available, taking it up to 145.5. Even after ticking up a point, I still advise to take the over as Kenpom projections have this number at 147. Correlating with the spread movement, Duke may find themselves in a position where they have to catch up in scoring pace.
Oral Roberts Vs. Duke Key Matchups
Max Abmas vs Duke perimeter defense
After exploding onto the scene against Ohio State as a 15 seed, Abmas has cemented his name as one of the most lethal scoring guards in the nation. It has been no different this year as he finished the year averaging 22.2 points per game.
He will be a constant threat to any opposing defense, being able to burn them off the dribble while attacking the rim or stopping and popping for a high-quality jump shot. Duke has done a great job of limiting the quality of opposing looks at the rim but have not dealt with a guard like Abmas.
Should Abmas get in a groove early, he will be able to shift the defense and hit his others in stride for a continuous scoring output. Max Abmas playmaking ability is a key reason why I believe the over will cash in my Oral Roberts Vs. Duke prediction.
Former March madness star, Max Abmas out of Oral Roberts will be heading back to the tournament this year. He’s an extremely talented shot-maker and scorer with unreal shooting range. He has shown some improvements as a playmaker / decision-maker over the last couple of years. pic.twitter.com/ixXdzb6Uvf
— Global Scouting (@GlobalScouting_) March 8, 2023
Take the over at no higher than 147.5 as this has all the makings of a potential high scoring affair with Oral Roberts looking to get the upset victory.