#17 Duke vs. #2 Syracuse

The best college basketball game of Saturday night is the #17 ranked Duke Blue Devils traveling to New York to face the #2 ranked Syracuse Orange.

 

Duke @ Syracuse Preview

Basketball ball over blue sky backgroundThe 17-4 Blue Devils are coming off a 80-65 win over the Pittsburgh Panthers. The 20-0 Orange are coming off a 67-57 win over the Wake Forest Demon Deacons.

The Blue Devils are lead by sophomore Rodney Hood and freshman Jabari Parker. Hood is averaging 17.4 points, 4.6 rebounds and 2.1 assists per game. Parker is averaging 18.8 points, 8.8 rebounds, 1.3 assists, 1 steal and 1.1 blocks per game.

The Orange are lead by senior C.J. Fair and freshman Tyler Ennis. Fair is averaging 16.7 points, 6 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.6 steals per game. Ennis is averaging 12.3 points, 3.4 rebounds, 5.4 assists and 2.5 steals per game.

 

Game Time: 6:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

 

Key Injuries

For Duke:

None to report.

For Syracuse:

DaJuan Coleman out (knee).

 

How Duke Wins

Duke needs to do what they do best and score. They are ranked 15th in the nation in scoring with 81.5 points per game. The Blue Devils will need to box out and win the rebound battle if they want a  better chance at winning the game. They are ranked 142 in the nation in rebounding with only 35.6 per game. Duke needs to also take care of the ball which they do very well as they only turn the ball over 9.5 times per game.

 

How Syracuse Wins

Syracuse will win the game if they do what they do best and that is play great defense. So far this year they are only giving up 57.8 points per game which ranks as 5th best in the nation. On defense they are also very good at getting steals. They get about 9.2 steals per game which ranks 7th in the nation. The Orange are also going to need to get everyone involved. They rank 166th in the nation in assists per game at 12.6.

 

My Prediction

Duke is going to try to make this a high scoring game for a better chance at winning. Syracuse is going to try to make this a defensive game and not let Duke put up a lot of points. Whichever team plays their style will have the best chance in winning the game.

The game will be close as both teams are very talented. The game is low scoring just as Syracuse wants and they take advantage. The Orange keep the game as a defensive game and get the win because of it.

Final Score

Syracuse: 68
Duke: 63

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