The No. 10 Duke Blue Devils host the No. 6 Illinois Fighting Illini in an intriguing non-conference matchup on Tuesday evening in Durham. The teams face off as part of the 2020 ACC/Big Ten Challenge, with both sides facing lofty expectations this season. Duke is 2-1 this season, with the team's only loss coming to a strong opponent in Michigan State. Illinois began the season with three straight wins before losing a neutral-court clash against No. 2 Baylor in its last outing.
Tip-off is schedule for 9:30 p.m. ET. William Hill Sportsbook lists the Blue Devils as 3.5-point home favorites in the latest Duke vs. Illinois odds. The total number of points Vegas thinks will be scored, or the over-under, is set at 146.5. Before making any Illinois vs. Duke picks, check out the college basketball predictions from the SportsLine Projection Model.
The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every Division I college basketball game 10,000 times. Over the past four-plus years, the proprietary computer model has generated an impressive profit of almost $2,700 for $100 players on its top-rated college basketball picks against the spread. It's also off to a fast start in the 2020-21 season, going 5-1 on all its top-rated picks and returning over $400. Anyone who has followed it has seen huge returns.
Now, the model has set its sights on Duke vs. Illinois in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge 2020. You can visit SportsLine now to see the picks. Here are the college basketball lines from William Hill and trends for Illinois vs. Duke:
- Duke vs. Illinois spread: Duke -3.5
- Duke vs. Illinois over-under: 146.5 points
- Duke vs. Illinois money line: Duke -170; Illinois +145
- DUKE: The Blue Devils are 6-8 against the spread in the last 14 non-conference games
- ILL: The Illini are 6-7-1 against the spread in the last 14 non-conference games
Why Duke can cover
As usual, Duke's roster is loaded with talent, and a couple of players have led the way so far this season. Sophomore forward Matthew Hurt is averaging 19.0 points and 8.7 rebounds per game, and he is on fire from long-range, knocking down 56 percent of his 3-point attempts. Freshman forward Jalen Johnson is also incredibly productive, averaging 13.0 points, 8.7 rebounds and 2.0 blocks per game while shooting 64 percent from the field.
Duke should be able to take care of the ball against an Illinois team that is forcing a turnover on only 14.2 percent of possessions, and the Blue Devils are above-average in effective field goal shooting (53.0 percent), 3-point shooting (35.5 percent) and 2-point shooting (52.8 percent) so far this season.
Why Illinois can cover
The Illini are led by one of the best players in the country in junior guard Ayo Dosunmu. Dosunmu was a preseason All-American selection and, in the early going, he is averaging 23.8 points, 7.3 rebounds and 6.3 assists per game. Dosunmu is flanked by productive big man Kofi Cockburn, who is averaging 13.0 points and 9.8 rebounds per game.
The Illini are an elite offensive rebounding team, grabbing 47.2 percent of their own misses, and they have an elite 60.5 percent mark in effective field goal shooting. Illinois ranks as a top-10 team in the country from beyond the 3-point arc, converting 45.1 percent, and that is coupled with 57.1 percent from 2-point range. Illinois is also holding its opponents to just 43.2 percent on 2-point shot attempts.
How to make Duke vs. Illinois picks
SportsLine's model is leaning over on the total, with 11 players projected to score at least nine points. The model also says one side of the spread hits in well over 60 percent of simulations. You can only get the pick at SportsLine.
So who wins Illinois vs. Duke? And which side of the spread cashes in well over 60 percent of simulations? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the Duke vs. Illinois spread to jump on, all from the advanced model that is up almost $2,700 on its top-rated college basketball spread picks over the past four-plus years, and find out.