One of the best rivalries in all of sports will be renewed tonight when the North Carolina Tar Heels (16-7, 6-4 ACC) travel to Cameron Indoor Stadium to take on the second-ranked Duke Blue Devils (21-2, 8-2 ACC). A North Carolina vs. Duke game always generates tremendous excitement and plenty of sports betting action.
Although North Carolina ranks ninth nationally in points per game, fifth in rebounds, and second in assists, the Tar Heels are currently unranked and are not a lock to make the NCAA tournament. Perhaps that explains why Duke opened as an 11-point favorite at the market-setting Pinnacle sportsbook.
Typically, when a very public team like North Carolina is such a large underdog, the public is quick to pounce. However, according to our NCAA Basketball betting trends, Roy Williams’ squad is currently receiving just 46% of spread bets. This raises the question, is there any historic value on either of these teams tonight?
Using our BetLabs historical odds software, we determined that UNC holds a 9-6-1 ATS record against Duke since 2005 including a 6-1 mark in the past seven games. We were also able to determine that neither team has been more than a 10.5-point favorite since March 6, 2010. In that game, Duke was a 15-point home favorite and eventually cruised to an easy 82-50 victory.
The table below, taken from our matchups page, displays the head to head details from the last ten North Carolina vs. Duke meetings.
This game will also be impacted by a number of injuries to key players. While UNC’s James McAdoo (team leading 14.9 ppg and 8.2 rpg) is expected to play despite a lower back injury, Duke forward Ryan Kelly (13.4 ppg, 5.4 rpg, .521 3PT%) has been ruled out with an injured right foot.
Additionally, there has been very little value betting the total in the matchup. In eight games played at Cameron Indoor stadium the under has gone 4-4 — the same record produced in eight games at the Dean Dome. With a total of 152, 61% of spread bets have taken the over at the time of publication.
Who do you like in tonight’s North Carolina vs. Duke matchup? Does North Carolina (+550 moneyline at CRIS) have a chance to pull off the upset? Leave your thoughts or comments in the section below.