Ryley’s Daily Basketball Pick: March 26th
The long awaited Elite Eight is here. The Arkansas Razorbacks are set to tip off at 8:50 eastern against the Duke Blue Devils. Which team will advance to the final four?
Arkansas has reached the final four on six occasions, the last time being 1995. Duke has reached the final four 16 times. This is an opportunity for Duke to build on coach Mike Kryzewski’s already legendary career. Duke ranks inside the top 30 in 2-point and 3-point shooting. The Blue Devils size advantage should lead to second chance opportunities.
Arkansas generates 22.7% of its offense from the free throw line, but Duke ranks second in defensive foul rate. This means Arkansas won’t be getting easy points they are accustomed too, making it harder for them to put points up on the scoreboard. Duke takes care of the basketball, ranking 21st in turnover rate.
Duke will make Arkansas earn every bucket, so I don’t know how they can keep up with a hot Blue Devils team. Duke also ended the season in the Top 25 in defensive efficiency. Arkansas is getting too much hype after their big win against 1 seed Gonzaga but let us not forget Duke also beat Gonzaga earlier in the season. Duke has multiple advantages in this game and I don’t see how Arkansas can keep beating expectations playing at the level they are to stick around. Give me Duke (-3.5) Play to -5