Free Pick Breakdown, Odds & Prediction: ACC Semifinal - #21 Duke vs. #14 Miami (3/10/2023) - Taking Vegas



Free Pick Breakdown, Odds & Prediction: ACC Semifinal – #21 Duke vs. #14 Miami (3/10/2023)

By TakingVegas Staff Writer
March 10, 2023
Photo by: Lance King - Getty Images

ACC Championship Semifinal: #21 Duke Blue Devils vs #14 Miami Hurricanes (3/10 @ 7:00 PM EST)

Spread: Duke -1.5
Money Line: Duke -135 / Miami +115
Total: 145

Overview and Betting Info

The #21 Duke Blue Devils (24-8) will face off against the #14 Miami Hurricanes (25-6) with a shot at the ACC Championship title on the line. These two teams met twice in the regular season with the road team winning both.  Miami is the ACC one-seed while Duke is fourth.

Duke is 13-19 against the spread this season and have covered three of their last four games. They’ve gone over the total 12 times and have done so in three of their last five.

Miami is 18-13 versus the spread but have failed to cover their last three games. They’ve gone over the total 13 times but have been under in three of their last four.

Duke Blue Devils

Duke enters Friday’s semifinal game having won their last eight games, including a blowout of Pitt in their quarterfinal on Thursday. While they’ve relied on their defense all season, their offense scored 96 points against a Pitt team that was fourth in opponent scoring in the ACC. Speaking of Duke’s defense, they were second in the ACC in opponent scoring (63.8 PPG), field goal percentage (40.9%), three-point percentage (30.6%), rebounds (39.3 RPG), blocks (4.7 BPG), and point differential (+8.0). The offense has struggled most of the year, ranking ninth in scoring (71.8 PPG) and field goal percentage (44.4%) and twelfth in three-point percentage (32.9%). They finished the season better, averaging 77.8 points over their last five games.

Duke has been led by the play of Kyle Filipowski (15.0 PPG, 9.2 RPG, 1.2 SPG) and Jeremy Roach (13.1 PPG, 1.0 SPG). Filipowski was limited to just 16 minutes against Pitt after rolling his ankle, but he still scored 22 points on 80% shooting. The seven-foot center found his stroke from deep, going for a season-best 4-8 from three. Filipowski is also an incredible defender, with at least one steal in his last six games (8 total). He struggled in his previous game against Miami but went for 17 points and 14 rebounds in their first matchup. Roach is a streaky shooter but averaged 16 points over his final five games of the season. He can hurt you with assists and steals when he’s not shooting well. He had just nine points in their win over Pitt but shot 3-4 from the field to go along with six assists and a steal.

Duke’s top stars have been supported by Tyrese Proctor (9.2 PPG), Mark Mitchell (9.1 PPG, 4.4 RPG), and Dereck Lively (5.1 PPG, 5.1 RPG, 2.3 BPG). Proctor had a slow start to the season but improved his scoring to average 11.7 points in 2023. He’s a solid defender and is their most dangerous three-point shooter despite making just 30.2% of his attempts. Mitchell is coming into Friday playing some of his best basketball lately, averaging 12.8 points over his last five games. Lively is a defensive stalwart that is second in the ACC in blocks and has a seven-game streak with two or more (16 total). He doesn’t shoot much but makes 64% of his attempts.

Miami Hurricanes

Miami was the ACC regular season champs after winning eight of their final nine games. That almost came apart on Thursday when they narrowly avoided being upset by Wake Forest in their quarterfinal game. Miami’s success has been due to their offense, leading the ACC in scoring (79.6 PPG), field goal percentage (48.5%), and three-point percentage (37.2%). Their defense has been a different story, ranking tenth in opponent scoring (71.7 PPG), twelfth in field goal percentage (44.8%), seventh in rebounding (34.8 RPG), and tenth in blocks (3.3 BPG). One area of concern is turnovers, as Miami is eleventh with 11.5 per game.

The Canes are led by a trio of stars in Isaiah Wong (15.9 PPG, 4.4 RPG, 1.4 SPG), Jordan Miller (15.1 PPG, 6.1 RPG, 1.3 SPG), and Norchad Omier (14.1 PPG, 10.0 RPG, 1.0 SPG, 1.3 BPG). Wong is their best shooter and incredible defender, ranking fifth in the conference in steals. He’s making over 38% of his threes this season, though he’s coming off his worst shooting performance of the year (1-9 from the field). Wong struggled against Duke this season, making least than 30% of his shots. Miller has been Miami’s hottest player of late, averaging 17.4 points and 8.2 rebounds over his last five games. He’s shooting 54% from the field this season and made over half his shots against Duke. Omier is fifth in the ACC in blocks, averaging 10.7 rebounds and 16 points over his last four games. He was a key reason for their quarterfinal win, as he contributed 15 points, 13 rebounds, and two blocks.

Miami’s trio of stars are joined by Nijel Pack (13.4 PPG1 1.0 SPG) and Wooga Poplar (8.2 PPG, 1.2 SPG. Pack is one of the most dangerous three-point shooters in the country, making 40.6% of his 170 attempts this season. He struggled a bit over his last two games but scored over twenty in three of his final five regular season games. Poplar is a physical guard making 47.9% of his shots this season. He’ll be our player to watch on Friday, as his play against Duke in February was a big reason for their win.

Free Pick: Miami ML +115

Miami has been criminally underrated all season, and that hasn’t changed for this semifinal matchup. While Duke looked incredible against Pitt, the Panthers came out clearly fatigued from their previous game. They were bricking wide-open shots, failing to get rebounds despite their size, and seemed checked out after going down 12-0. Duke scored easily, and everyone shot well, but nothing indicates that will happen again.

Miami’s defense is worse than Pitt, but their offense can run anybody out of the gym. Expect to see them run against a bigger Duke team and take plenty of threes. That will run down Duke and force them to shoot from the outside. The Devils did that well against Pitt, but Miami has done surprisingly well guarding against the three this season. The Canes have five players averaging one steal or more, which will create a nightmare for Duke’s guards. Roach’s scoring has been down over their last two games, and it’s hard to imagine that changing against the Canes guards.

The last thing to consider is the two games these two played during the regular season. Miami lost by just two points at Duke, whereas the Devils lost by 12 when they visited the Canes.

We’re taking the ACC champion Miami Hurricanes to win on Friday.