Duke vs. Appalachian State Prediction: Will Duke Be Too Much for Appalachian State to Handle?

Duke Blue Devils vs. Appalachian State Mountaineers prediction and pick for Thursday's college basketball matchup. Jason Radowitz gives his pick for tonight's showdown.
Jason Radowitz |
Thu, December 16, 9:38 AM EST | 4 min read
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Duke vs. Appalachian State Prediction: Will Duke Be Too Much for Appalachian State to Handle?

The Duke Blue Devils lost their first game of the year to Ohio State, on the road, on November 30. Since that game, Duke has played just one game, and it was a beatdown against South Carolina State, where the Blue Devils ended up winning 103-62.

Duke looked fantastic in that game, but now they’ll take on an experienced Appalachian State Mountaineers team that made the NCAA Tournament last year. It’s not going to be as easy as some think.

Can Duke’s young talent outmatch Appalachian State’s experience? Here are our picks and predictions for the non-conference matchup between the Appalachian State Mountaineers and the Duke Blue Devils.

Duke vs. Appalachian State Start Time, Where to Watch, and Odds

Date: Thursday, December 16, 2021Game Time: 7:00 p.m. ETWhere To Watch: ESPN2

Click Here For Duke vs Appalachian State Odds

Duke vs. Appalachian State INJURY REPORT

Appalachian State: No Injuries Reported

Duke: Questionable: F Theo John (Back)

Duke vs. Appalachian State Prediction

The Duke Blue Devils still look like one of the best teams in the nation. But even reallygood teams struggle against really experienced teams. The Appalachian State Mountainers simply have an experienced group that made the NCAA Tournament last season. Duke can’t say the same; I’m just saying!

Anyway, Duke looks extremely improved this year. The Blue Devils are shooting an effective field goal percentage of 54.7 percent while turning the ball over just 12.8 percent of the time. The Blue Devils also hit 35.7 percent from long range and 55.3 percent from inside the arc. That’s the area that Duke will want to take advantage of. The Mountaineers are struggling to stop teams inside, allowing opponents to shoot 59 percent inside the arc on the season.

Meanwhile, defensively, Duke is really limiting fouls which have helped them throughout the season. Not only is Duke limiting fouls and foul shots, but teams are shooting just 59.3 percent against them from the line. You don’t want to make too much of these numbers because foul shooting against is kind of by chance, but by Duke limiting teams at the line, when opponents do get the opportunity at the line, they miss because they can’t get into a consistent pattern at the line. Duke is also limiting teams to a 46.3 percent effective field goal percentage and should be just fine holding Appalachian State off the glass.

The Mountaineers, on the other hand, are shooting an effective field goal percentage of 48.4 percent. That’s not all that great, but the Mountaineers can also limit turnovers to 15.7 percent. If this squad can keep the turnovers down, there’s a chance they can stick around in this game.

On defense, Appalachian State has also limited opponents to 29.7 percent from downtown and has dominated the defensive glass, holding teams to 21 percent offensive rebounds.

Duke will win this game, but I like Appalachian State to cover the 21.5 spread.

Duke Blue Devils vs. Appalachian State Mountaineers Pick

  • Appalachian State +21.5 (-110)
Jason Radowitz
@Jason_Radowitz

Jason grew up an avid sports fan. His passion for sports writing grew in high school and he developed a blog that was strictly for New York Sports. From his work, you will quickly realize that he loves looking at games from an analytical and numbers perspective and hopes to provide you with that same perspective in his articles.

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