Duquesne Dukes vs. Illinois Fighting Illini Pick – Lay the Points

by | Last updated Mar 23, 2024 | cbb

Duquesne Dukes (25-11 SU, 19-16 ATS) vs. Illinois Fighting Illini (27-8 SU, 19-15-2 ATS)

When: Saturday, March 23rd, 8:40 PM (ET)

Where: CHI Health Center Omaha, Nebraska


Point Spread: DUQ +10/ILL -10

Total: 149.5

Money Line: Duquesne Dukes +371/-503

Notable Injuries


  • Tre Williams (Questionable) Shoulder

Fighting Illini

  • Max Williams (Out) Undisclosed

Recent Form

With a 25-11 overall record, the Duquesne Dukes have been playing well lately, as they are currently on a nine-game winning streak. This season, the Dukes have gone 14-8 in Atlantic 10 play and 11-3 in non-conference games. As the underdog, Duquesne has gone 7-5 this season.

So far, the Dukes have played 36 games, going 8-7 on the road and 16-4 at home. Their average scoring margin at home is +6.2 compared to -0.2 on the road. Over their last five games on the road, Duquesne has gone 5-0, and their record on the road this season is 7-3.

Today’s over/under line of 149.5 is higher than the average over/under line in Duquesne’s games this season (142.7). So far, 28 of their games have finished with fewer points than today’s line. Over their last three games, the average scoring total is 125 points.

As the underdog, Duquesne has been solid vs. the spread this season, going 8-4. Their ATS record on the road is 9-6, and over their last 10 road games, they are 8-2 vs. the spread. In their last 3 games as the underdog, the Dukes are 3-0 ATS.

Illinois is 21-3 at home this season, and they have won their last five games at home. On the year, they have outscored opponents by an average of 13.0 points per game at home.

Over their last 10 home games, the Fighting Illini are 9-1. They are 25-5 this year when favored, and they have been favored in 30 of their 35 games.

Today’s over/under line of 149.5 is nearly identical to the average over/under line in Illinois’ games this season (149.8). So far, 18 of their games have had a higher over/under line than today’s line. In their last three games, the over/under record is 3-0, and the average scoring total in those games is 173 points.

Illinois’ ATS record this year is 19-15-2, including an 11-12-1 mark at home. Over their last 10 games as the favorite, the Fighting Illini are 6-4 vs. the spread. At home, their ATS record is 5-5 this year and 3-0 in their last three.


The Duquesne offense is coming off a game in which they scored 71 points vs. BYU. Overall, their field goal percentage was 46.4% while connecting on 7 threes. Leading Duquesne in scoring vs. BYU was Dae Dae Grant with his 19 points. Jakub Necas also added 12 points for the Dukes.

So far, the Dukes’ defense is ranked 32nd in the country at 66.1 points per contest. The Duquesne defense is coming off a game in which they gave up a total of 67 points and allowed BYU to connect on 8 threes.

Illinois’ offense is coming off a strong performance, scoring 85 points against Morehead State. They had an overall field goal percentage of 54.2% and made 9/12 free throws. The Illinois offense has been looking to get up shots from outside so far this season, averaging 23.9 three-point attempts per contest. Overall, they have connected on 34% of their looks from outside this season.

The Fighting Illini’s defense is presently ranked 237th nationally, allowing an average of 73.7 points per contest. In terms of field goal percentage allowed, Illinois’ defense has allowed opponents to shoot 43.4% from the field, including a three-point shooting percentage allowed of 33.9% this season.

Betting Trends

  • Through their last ten road games, Duquesne has an ATS record of just 8-2. However, their overall record was 7-3 while averaging 67 points per game.
  • Across their last three home contests, Illinois has been good against the spread, posting a mark of 2-1. Their overall mark in these games was 2-1, while averaging 84 points per game.
  • Going back to their last ten games as the underdog, the Dukes have a straight up record of 6-4. But, their mark vs the spread was just 7-3.
  • As the betting favorite, the Fighting Illini have an ATS record of 3-0 in their last three games. In these matchups, their straight up record was 3-0.

Rich’s Pick To Cover The Spread

When we talk March Madness, momentum is a currency all its own, and the Dukes are rolling in it—winning nine in a row and covering the spread in eight of those. Typically, that’s a green light for backing them in the tournament. However, I’m zagging where others zig here. The Illini have caught my eye as a Final Four contender, entering the fray on a hot streak of their own with victories in eight of their last nine, only stumbling against a tough Purdue team.

What sets the Illini apart isn’t just their winning ways but how they win, stretching the floor and decisively beating opponents. With five of their last eight wins coming by double digits, they’ve showcased an ability to not just win but dominate. They have a big edge on the boards on the boards and shooting and can get scoring throughout the lineup. Take Illinois -10.

Receive a 50% bonus (75% w/Bitcoin!) and Enjoy the BEST Live Betting at Bovada! Bovada Sportsbook!

Get $60 of FREE member picks & predictions

(NO commitments. NO Credit Card. NO Salesman.)