Pittsburgh @ Duke NCAA Football Odds Preview

Posted by Daniel Strum on November 14, 2015 in

The Duke Blue Devils have set themselves up against their equals in Pittsburgh Panthers to mark the 11th week of this year’s college football odds. Despite losing their previous games, both the Blue Devils and the Panthers, who are identically 6-3 on the season, have been impressive in the College Football betting lines and are hoping to get back to winning ways on Saturday. With similar records and similar hunger to jump back on the winning column, which of these two teams will be having the last laugh in this potential game-of-the-week matchup? Find out as we take you through a succinct online sports betting NCAAF guide of this mouthwatering Week 11 showdown.

How To Bet the Blue Devils vs. Panthers NCAA Football Odds, TV & Game Info

Venue: Brooks Field at Wallace Wade Stadium, Durham, North Carolina
Date: Saturday, November 14, 2015
Time: 12:00 PM ET
TV Stream: WatchESPN
NCAAF Lines: Pittsburgh (+3.5) at Duke (-3.5)

Betting on the Duke Blue Devils

The Blue Devils are entering this encounter with their unwavering focus of righting their ship after losing their last two games in a row, a run that ended their four-game winning streak. In their most recent game in Week 10, they were mercilessly thrashed 66-31 by the North Carolina Tar Heels. The game was pretty much over by the time the second quarter ended as North Carolina was leading by 38 points. Duke’s Quarterback Thomas Sirk could only complete 18 of his 37 passes for 191 yards for no touchdowns and 2 interceptions.

Despite that defeat and the lack of solid QB passing play, the offense made the scores relatively respectable with the 31 points. This continued the trend of Duke’s offense playing well enough even in losing efforts. For example, two weeks ago, they managed to score 27 points in their controversial 30-27 road loss to Miami.

Bettors can thus be guaranteed that Duke’s offense will show up in this game, whether or not they’ll end up winning the game. Sirk, who leads the Devils passing game with 1979 yards, a 58.7 pass completion percentage, 12 touchdowns and five interceptions, will be the player to watch. Sirk also leads the rushing game with 555 and five touchdowns, meaning all of Duke’s offense will be running through him.

In his main supporting cast, the Blue Devils have RB Shaquille Powell with 449 yards and three TDs, and WR Max McCaffrey, who leads the receivers with 475 yards and three touchdowns. They face a Pittsburgh defense that has allowed a total of 68 points in the last two games, so if they can keep up in their scoring ways, they’ll have a good chance of celebrating a home win.

The defensive side of the ball could, however, prove to be a problem for the hosts, given the manner they’ve been leaking points recently. After impressively starting the season with a solid defense, allowing just 26 points total points in their first three games, things have been falling apart for this D-line, allowing 139 points in the last three games, including the 66 points given up last week.

To have a chance of stopping Pittsburgh’s O-line whose front-7 is ranked 31st in the nation, the likes of Jeremy Cash must return to their solid defensive ways. Cash leads the team with three sacks and has been a lethal tackling machine with 79 total tackles, including five double-digit tackle games this season. Without an inspired performance from him and his teammates, another Blue afternoon could easily be in the books for Devils.

Betting on the Pittsburgh Panthers

The Panthers have struggled to get a win in their past two games, giving decent efforts but still ending up with losses (to Notre Dame and North Carolina). Their last game was against Notre Dame, a game that ended 30-42 in favor of the Irish. Notre Dame Irish ruled the first two quarters, finishing the first half 21-3. The third quarter belonged to the Panthers, but the Irish had created too big a gap that ensured they were beyond reach until the last quarter, where they sealed the deal in a rather easy way.

In spite of the losing effort, quarterback Nathan Peterman decently completed 12 out of his 31 passes for 223 yards and 1 touchdown along with 1 interception. On the season, Nathan Peterman leads the Panthers offense with 1596 yards, 63.2 percent pass completion, and 11 touchdowns. Qadree Ollison leads the rushers with 748 yards, 140 carries and eight touchdowns, while the receivers are led by Tyler Boyd, who has 66 receptions for 662 yards and five touchdowns. This talented trio will be charged with the responsibility of spearheading the Panthers against a Duke defense that is going through a rough patch defensively, something that should allow them enough opportunities to make sufficient plays for a good number of points.

Plus, they Panthers have been doing better defensively, allowing 24.33 points per game this season. Facing a Duke offense that has scored 103 points in its last three games (averaging at 34.33 PPG) will certainly be a tough test. Still, the Blue Devils have been out of sorts recently, so the Panthers should be able to make a couple of key blocks to prevent their hosts from running away with the game easily

The Duke vs. Pittsburgh Key NCAAF Betting Trends

• Duke is 15-7 SU in its last 22 games
• Pittsburgh is 4-2 SU in its last 6 games
• Duke is 12-4 SU in its last 16 games at home
• Pittsburgh is 4-1 ATS/SU in its last 5 games on the road
• The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Duke’s last 9 games
• The total has gone OVER in Duke’s last 3 games
• The OVER/UNDER is 2-2-1 in Pittsburgh’s last game
• The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Duke’s last 5 home games

My Expert Betting Prediction & Pick

This game is very hard to predict, given the similarities in the records and the recent nature of the results from the two teams. On paper, the Panthers look slightly better (more balanced offensively and defensively), but the Blue Devils have been equally dangerous and they have the home advantage. This game is therefore likely to be a tossup game, so feel free to lean on whichever side that appeals to you most. For us, though, we believe the Panthers showed a lot of character on the road last week, and a similar game will see them get the better of the Blue Devils in a closely contested shootout affair. So, for our free college football picks, we are recommending Pittsburgh for both the SU and ATS, with both teams most likely combining for an OVER affair.