Boston College Eagles vs. Duke Blue Devils Preview and Pick – Point Spread

Boston College Eagles (10-6 SU, 5-7 ATS) vs. Duke Blue Devils (13-2 SU, 9-5 ATS), 7:00 p.m. EST, Wednesday, January 13, 2009, Cameron Indoor Stadium, Durham, N.C. TV: ESPN
by Ryno of

Point Spread: Boston College +16.5/Duke -16.5
Over/Under: 144

The Duke Blue Devils are coming off their second loss of the season, a 71-67 loss at Georgia Tech on Saturday. They will try to bounce back at home against the Boston College Eagles on Wednesday.

Duke and Boston College played twice last season. In the regular season, the Eagles won at home, 80-74. In the ACC tournament, Duke barely escaped with a 66-65 victory. Since joining the ACC in 2005, the win in Chestnut Hill last season was the only time BC has defeated Duke. The Blue Devils haven’t won any of the games against BC in the last five seasons by more than 14 points. All but one of the matchups were decided by 10 points or less.

Before Duke’s loss to Georgia Tech, the Blue Devils were rolling. They had won seven straight games by more than 20 points and eight straight overall. Three of those blowout victories were over Gonzaga, Clemson and Iowa State. Duke has now lost both of its true road games this season, with the other being a 73-69 loss at Wisconsin on December 2.

Duke hasn’t lost a home game to a team other than North Carolina since the 2006-07 season.

Boston College is not having a very good season. The Eagles have already lost games to Saint Joseph’s, Northern Iowa, Harvard, Rhode Island, Maine and Clemson. The 52-51 home loss to Maine on January 2 really stands out as a terrible loss for BC.

In their last game, a 72-56 loss at Clemson, Joe Trapani (13 points) and Reggie Jackson (12 points) were the only BC players that scored in double figures. The Eagles shot 37 percent from the field and 2-for-16 from beyond the arc. They were also out-rebounded by seven.

In Duke’s loss to Georgia Tech on Saturday, the Blue Devils shot 6-for-28 on 3-pointers, uncharacteristic for one of the best outside shooting teams in the country at 42.6 percent. But Georgia Tech is one of the best defensive teams in the country and was able to disrupt Duke’s 3-point attempts. Duke was also out-rebounded by eight. Jon Scheyer was really the only Duke player able to score consistently, as he finished with 25 points. Mason Plumlee (10 points) was the only other Blue Devil to score in double figures.

Boston College is holding opponents to 30.8 percent 3-point shooting. If the Eagles can hold Duke to around that percentage, they may be able to keep the game close. The Eagles are shooting 32.9 percent from 3-point range, while Duke is holding opponents to 28.4 percent from out there. Duke is out-rebounding opponents by about six boards per game, while BC is grabbing more than nine boards per game more than its opponents. Both teams are committing about 12 turnovers per game, but Duke is forcing almost four turnovers per game more than BC. Duke is shooting 48 percent from the field and holding opponents to 38 percent, while BC is shooting 45 percent and holding opponents to 42 percent.

Boston College is 4-1 ATS in its last five road games but 1-5 in its last six games overall. Duke is 4-1 ATS in its last five home games, 4-1 ATS in its last five games as a home favorite, and 5-2 ATS in its last seven games overall. Duke is 0-5 ATS in its last five games following a SU loss. The over is 4-0 in Duke’s last four games following an ATS loss. The over is 8-1 in the last nine meetings between BC and Duke and 4-1 in the last five meetings between these teams at Duke. BC is 6-2-1 ATS in its last nine games against the Blue Devils, 3-1-1 ATS in its last five games at Duke, and the underdog is 4-0 ATS in the last four games between these teams.

Ryno’s Pick: Duke and Boston College are certainly on opposite ends of the ACC this season. BC has played Duke tough in previous games but don’t let that fool you. Completely different circumstances here. Especially since Duke is coming off a loss. Look for the Blue Devils to DESTROY Boston College tonight.