One of the biggest games of the young college basketball season is set to get underway on Monday night.
Two of the best NCAA Division 1 teams in the nation are set to face off in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. No.4 Ohio States will visit No.2 Duke on ESPN at 9:30 p.m. ET. You can watch a free live stream online at espn3.com.
Both teams enter the contest undefeated at a combined 10-0.
It’s early in the year, but the Blue Devils should be vey prepared to take on this talented Buckeyes team. They have had one of the toughest non-conference schedules in the country, already beating No. 3 Kentucky and former No.2 Louisville on Saturday.
Ohio State, on the other hand, hasn’t really been tested in the 2012-2013 season. Their closes game came in an 11-point win at home against Rhode Island. This will be the first time that the Buckeyes venture out of Columbus.
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The Blue Devils will be looking for a measure of revenge from last year’s matchup between the two teams. With both teams ranked in the top three, Ohio State looked like the only national championship contender on the floor, defeating Duke 85-63 in a contest that was essentially over at halftime. Jared Sullinger and Austin Rivers have since made the leap to the NBA, but most of the players in that game have returned for the rematch.
Senior Mason Plumlee will look to help Duke get their revenge. He’s leading his team with 19.7 points and 10 rebounds per game. He was one of the bright spots for the Blue Devils in the game that took place almost exactly a year ago. He scored 16 points and grabbed eight rebounds on 7 of 12 shooting.
This isn’t the kind of game that Duke is used to losing. They’ve won 96 straight non-conference games at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
The consensus betting line at most Las Vegas spotsbooks indicates that Duke will extend their streak. The point spread has the Blue Devils as 5.5-point favorites.
Prediction: Just a few weeks into the season, Ohio State hasn’t facing much competition. Duke has been forced into mid-season form by facing the likes of Louisville and Kentucky. At home, they are much more prepared for this highly-anticipated matchup.
Predicted Score: Duke 82, Ohio State 71