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ACC Weekend Preview: Leap Year Edition

I know Coach, seems like Vegas served this total up on a platter

NCAA Basketball: Duke at Virginia Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Seven more games this week to try for me to inch back to .500 for the year. This week we get a good slate highlighted by a visit to JPJ by the hated Duke Blue Devils. Before that though, we’ve got you covered for all your betting needs.

Pittsburgh Panthers @ North Carolina State Wolfpack
KP: NC State -9, O/U 135
Vegas: NC State -8.5, O/U 135.5

I’ve watched enough ACC basketball in my 37 years to know that whenever NC State looks like they might have a glimmer of hope to do something good, they fall flat. And whenever you completely count them out, they do something improbable. In my first Bracketology of the season, I have the Pack as my last team in the field. That means if they win games they should win, they’ll make the NCAA Tournament. You know what to do.

Pick: Pitt +8.5

Florida State Seminoles @ Clemson Tigers
KP: Clemson +3, O/U 131
Vegas: Clemson +3.5, O/U 134

Clemson is the exact kind of team that can pick up a home win against the top tier teams of this conference. But I’m too confident in this Seminoles team this season. The crazy thing is, they don’t do anything spectacularly. They don’t have their typical army of 7 footers and they don’t have a single player who can take over a game. That doesn’t matter. They’re 24-4 and poised to win an ACC Regular Season Title.

Pick: Florida State -3.5

North Carolina Tar Heels @ Syracuse Orange
KP: Syracuse -7, O/U 147
Vegas: Syracuse -4.5, O/U 147.5

I always pause when there is this big a discrepancy between the KenPom prediction and the Vegas line. But given North Carolina is a public team in the betting markets, a swing this big doesn’t take a lot of thought. From a basketball perspective, I like Syracuse anyways, but given the value on this line, just fade the public.

Pick: Syracuse -4.5

Notre Dame Fighting Irish @ Wake Forest Demon Deacons
KP: Wake Forest -1, O/U 149
Vegas: Wake Forest +2, O/U 149

Let me remind you Wake Forest just played a 2OT thriller where they had to erase a nine point deficit in regulation just to force overtime. This is complete narrative street here, but I’m going to assume this team is probably gassed and riding a high of emotion. I’d rather have the plus number that KenPom wants to give me, but I’ll take the Irish -2, even on the road.

Pick: Notre Dame -2

Duke Blue Devils @ Virginia Cavaliers
KP: Duke -4, O/U 120
Vegas: Duke -3.5, O/U 125

Just like the Syracuse/North Carolina line, I generally pause when I see a discrepancy between a KenPom prediction and Vegas line this high. But again, when the total in a Virginia game climbs in the Vegas books, I generally pounce the under. The fact of the matter is the public can’t stomach thinking Duke won’t score 65 points in a game. Going beyond the line value, I don’t see Duke being able to control this game on the offensive end. They won’t be able to iso Zion Williamson and R.J. Barrett like last season and Virginia will keep the ball out of the paint. If Duke goes wild from three, this one can get away, but I can’t see it.

Pick: Under 125

Miami-Florida Hurricanes @ Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
KP: Georgia Tech -6, O/U 142
Vegas: Georgia Tech -5, O/U 142.5

Pick: Georgia Tech -5

Virginia Tech Hokies @ Louisville Cardinals
KP: Louisville -13, O/U 133

I’m inclined to think that Louisville isn’t playing well enough to cover 13 points at home. However, their struggles a couple weeks ago all came on the road. Looking at games against bottom-half ACC teams at home, the Cardinals have won by 17, 24, 10, and 18. I think they can take care of the Hokies.

Pick: Louisville -13

Season Total: ATS (22-25-1), O/U (7-13), Total (29-38-1)