- No. 7 Duke suffered a 52-50 loss at Virginia on Saturday
- The Blue Devils’ title odds dropped to +1400. Are they a strong championship bet?
- Read below for a deeper look at the NCAA Tournament Odds
No. 7 Duke suffered a tough defeat on Saturday, falling to Virginia in a tight, 52-50 affair. Even though the Blue Devils’ 2020 NCAA Tournament odds dropped slightly to +1400, the focus remains on March in Durham.
Can Coach K and co. bring a title home this year?
2020 NCAA Tournament Odds
|San Diego State Aztecs||+1200|
|Duke Blue Devils||+1400|
|Florida State Seminoles||+1600|
|Michigan State Spartans||+1800|
Odds taken Feb 29th.
Duke Caught by the Cavs
The Blue Devils may have lost by only two points on Saturday afternoon, but a deeper look at the numbers tells the true story of the late-season ACC tilt. Duke was outplayed by Virginia.
The Cavaliers shot 12% better from the field, and were also 7% better than Duke from behind the three-point line. Virginia also won the rebound battle by a margin of five, and blocked more shots by a count of 13-to-7. Tony Bennett’s team even doled out five more assists than the visiting Blue Devils.
Duke’s two pillars showed up, with both Vernon Carey Jr. and Tre Jones dropping 17 points. Their undoing, however, was the fact that no one else provided more than even six points.
A Small Change in Price
The fact that Duke’s National Championship odds moved only slightly after Saturday’s defeat shouldn’t cause any concern. Their resume is still one of the sport’s elite, they simply ran into a conference opponent with a tough defense, and it didn’t help that this was a late-season road trip.
Saturday’s result wasn’t a revelation. Duke had some offensive trouble against a program that is known for its defense, but they didn’t do anything to truly discourage anyone that was on board prior to Saturday. Virginia is a well-respected college basketball brand, and a loss in this spot isn’t one that is causing panic in Durham.
Blue Devils Still a Strong Bet?
As mentioned prior, Saturday’s result shouldn’t drastically change the way anyone views this Duke team. This isn’t an elite Virginia squad, but it’s still an immensely tricky out, especially on the road.
Duke’s body of work, however, speaks for itself. They have a 4-2 record (66%) in quadrant one opportunities, a better mark than Florida State (63%), Creighton (60%), Maryland (58%), Villanova (57%), and several others at the top of the sport. They’ve also racked up marks of 6-2 in quadrant two games, and 11-1 in quadrant three opportunities.
As far as simply players go, they have possibly the nation’s best big man, and one of the smartest point guards in the country. Whether it’s resume or the eye test, the Blue Devils feel like a team that can convert on that +1400 number. The question is how much production will come from those around Carey and Jones?
Let's have fun and keep it civil.