Duke vs Notre Dame Picks and Predictions: Fighting Irish Hang With Blue Devils

The Fighting Irish are rolling and are an undefeated 9-0 at home, but tonight they face their biggest challenge yet: Paolo Banchero and the No. 9 Duke Blue Devils. Read our NCAAB betting preview to find out if Notre Dame can make a game of it.

Last Updated: Jan 31, 2022 2:02 PM ET Read Time: 4 min
Blake Wesley Notre Dame Fighting Irish college basketball
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

On Monday night, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish (14-6, 7-2) have the biggest game on their schedule when they host the Duke Blue Devils (17-3, 7-2).

The Irish flaunt an undefeated record at home (9-0), which includes wins over the likes of Kentucky and North Carolina.

Duke on the other hand has split their true road games (2-2) but picked up a big road win on Saturday against Louisville.

Can Notre Dame tap into their elevated play at home and topple Duke? Continue reading for our free college basketball picks and predictions for Duke vs. Notre Dame on Saturday, January 31st for more.

Duke vs Notre Dame odds

This odds widget represents the best odds available for each betting market from regulated sportsbooks.

Duke opened as 5.5-point favorites and has moved to -5 since. The total opened at 143.5 and has moved just a nudge up to 144.

Use the live odds widget above to track any future line movements right up until tip-off and be sure to check out the full college basketball odds before placing your bets.

Duke vs Notre Dame predictions

Predictions made on 1/31/2022 at 1:00 p.m. ET.
Click on each prediction to jump to the full analysis.

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Duke vs Notre Dame game info

Location: Purcell Pavilion, South Bend, IN
Date: Monday, January 31, 2022
Tip-off: 7:00 p.m. ET

Duke at Notre Dame betting preview


Duke: Trevor Keels G (Questionable).
Notre Dame: No injuries to report.

Find our latest NCAA basketball injury reports.

Betting trend to know

Notre Dame is 7-2 ATS in their last nine games and has played to the Over in seven of their last 10. Find more NCAA betting trends for Duke vs. Notre Dame.

Duke vs Notre Dame picks and predictions

Our predictions are compiled from the analysis of the spread and total and are indications of where we are leaning for this game.
Our best bet is the play that we like the most for this game, which we would actually put some of our bankroll behind.

Spread analysis

The Fighting Irish have come a long way since their 4-5 start to the season. To their credit, that start came against a very tough non-conference schedule. Three of those five losses came against teams currently ranked inside the Top 25 in KenPom efficiency: Illinois (16th), Saint Mary's (20th), and Indiana (25th). The other two losses are less defensible, coming against Texas A&M (72nd) and Boston College (139th). The lone true bright spot of that stretch was a win against Kentucky (third), joining Duke as one of the four teams to drop the Wildcats this year.

Since that tumultuous start, Notre Dame has won ten of its last eleven. Much of that success has come from its pair of star guards, senior Dane Goodwin (15.4 PPG) and true freshman Blake Wesley (15.0 PPG). Dane Goodwin has seen a huge uptick in his efficiency, sporting a shooting split of 52% / 50% / 88%. Now obviously a 50% three-point percentage is bound to regress, but Goodwin is a career 39.3% shooter and should remain a serious perimeter threat - regression or not. Goodwin particularly comes alive in games at West Bend, averaging 17.1 points per game while shooting 56% from the field, including a mind-numbing 58% from three.

Blake Wesley on the other hand has struggled a bit efficiency-wise, especially as of late. During the Fighting Irish's current stretch of ten wins in their last eleven, Wesley has shot 50%+ just once. For comparison, Goodwin has done it in all but one game during that time. Despite the efficiency struggles, head coach Mike Brey has leaned on Wesley more volume-wise. To Brey's credit, Notre Dame has been obviously winning despite this approach, and it may pay dividends down the road by getting Wesley more reps and by building his confidence.

Points per game 13.1 16.5
Field goal percentage 46.2% 39.2%
3-point percentage 35.9% 30.1%

But Wesley will need to turn around his even more recent struggles for Notre Dame to have a chance at beating Duke on Monday. In the last two games (which were both at home), Wesley has shot 3/16 (18.8%) and 2/11 (18.2%). Despite that, he scored 14 and 15 points in those contests, largely on the back of free-throw trips. To Wesley's credit, he has found a way to get to the line reliably as of late, averaging 8.2 free throw attempts across his last six games. Wesley's 68% percentage from there is the second-lowest mark on the team (min 5 MPG), but that may be more of a product of Notre Dame's fourth-best free throw percentage in the nation at 74.4%.

If Wesley can continue to find his way to the line and find a way to turn things around efficiency-wise, the Irish have a real chance at dropping the Blue Devils given that Mike Brey has been great at coaching up his team in these types of situations. Starting with their win against Kentucky, Notre Dame has gone 4-1 ATS as underdogs and has won three of those games outright.

Prediction: Team Spread (Odds)

Over/Under analysis

Monday's game against Duke presents arguably Notre Dame's toughest challenge of the season. True freshman and projected top-three pick Paolo Banchero (17.6 PPG, 8.3 RPG) is a terrifying cross between size (6'11, 245 pounds), athleticism, ball-handling, and finesse. Fellow true freshman 6'6" 222 pound AJ Griffin (8.9 PPG) is an inside-out matchup nightmare, possessing a 71.4% field goal percentage at the rim and a 50% clip from deep. Griffin is also coming off arguably the best game of his career, scoring a game-high 22 points on 5/5 shooting from deep.

And while Trevor Keels (11.9 PPG) is questionable for Monday's game, the Blue Devils also have star guard Wendell Moore (14.9 PPG, 41% 3P%) and seven-foot Mark Williams (10.1 PPG, 7.1 PPG) at their disposal. With that level of talent it should come as no surprise that Duke ranks very favorably in a lot of offensive metrics, whether it's scoring (10th), field goal percentage (11th), or three-point percentage (39th). Their abundance of size also lends its hand to proficiency at the glass (52nd) and rim protection (15th in blocks). Oh, they play disciplined team-oriented basketball on top of all of that (5th in assists, 19th in turnovers).

Notre Dame ranks outside of the top 100 in KenPom defensive efficiency, and Duke will likely put up their fair share. But the Fighting Irish have shown as of late they can keep the scoring up as well, averaging 75.1 points per game in their last eleven. With marks that high, it's no wonder they've gone over the total in seven of their last ten.

Prediction: Over 144 (-110)

Best bet

Situationally, Notre Dame may have the edge for this game as well. Duke is coming off an emotional road win and has another road game this Saturday against rival North Carolina. Meanwhile, Notre Dame can tie Miami for first place in the ACC ahead of their game with them on Saturday, giving the Fighting Irish a clean path and opportunity to sit atop the ACC. On top of that, given that Joe Lunardi's latest Bracketology update had Notre Dame on the outside looking in, every game for them has that little bit of extra juice. Their win on Saturday against Virginia was certainly a good first step towards getting into the bubble, but the work is most certainly not finished.

Expect Mike Brey and the Irish to bring a good fight.

Pick: Notre Dame +5 (-108

College basketball parlays

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