Duke vs. North Carolina Fearless Prediction & Game Preview
Check out the Duke vs. North Carolina fearless prediction and game preview.
Duke (3-0) vs. North Carolina (1-2) Game Preview
Broadcast, TV, Game Time
Date: Saturday, Sept. 23rd
Game Time: 3:30 pm ET
Venue: Kenan Stadium, Chapel Hill, NC
It’s Duke-North Carolina. It might not be basketball, but in this case – unlike the college hoops regular season – it actually means something.
It was one of the big shockers of last year when Duke held on to beat North Carolina in a 28-27 thriller that ruined any hopes of the Tar Heels playing for the ACC title.
It’s too early to call UNC the spoiler this time around, but at the very least, it has to win the rivalry game to stay alive for a bowl – and it’s only September.
North Carolina has struggled to get going getting rocked by Cal and Louisville to start before going on the road to get by Old Dominion. Lose to Duke, and with Georgia Tech and Notre Dame up next. there’s going to be a problem.
The Blue Devils have been terrific, rocking Northwestern and Baylor with the offense strong, the defense a wall, and everything looking right just as the ACC season kicks off.
One Reason Why Duke Will Win
The Blue Devils have dominated by 1) holding on to the ball, 2) controlling the time of possession to keep the defense fresh and 3) getting a massive year out of the run D so far.
The plays behind the line are coming from the outstanding pass rush, and then the offense does its thing to take advantage of key situations.
So far, Duke leads the nation in run defense and is second in third down conversion D.
North Carolina’s defense? Nope.
It’s played better offenses than Duke has so far, but the Tar Heels are getting bombed on. Even with a good pass rush, the secondary has been a big problem.
One Reason Why North Carolina Will Win
Can the special teams be enough to take over?
The Tar Heels have been great at controlling the punting game and coming up with a few solid kickoff returns – it has to do something special to bust through what Duke does.
There’s enough talent on UNC to get the passing game going, with Chazz Surratt coming off a strong day against Old Dominion, and Jordon Brown and Michael Carter each running for two scores.
No, there isn’t the defensive production Duke is generating, but there’s enough offense to keep up if this starts to open up a little bit. UNC showed last week it can explode, and now it has to score early and make the Blue Devils press.
What’s Going To Happen
It’s a rivalry game that always seems to defy logic and reason, but can North Carolina overcome all the issues and inconsistencies to stun a Duke team that’s playing so well?
On paper, Duke should win this in a walk, but the UNC offense started to show more of a spark early on last week. As good as the Blue Devils have been, the pass rush will slow down just a little bit, the offense will come up with a few mistakes that haven’t been there so far, and the Tar Heels will get their revenge.
Welcome to the rivalry.
Duke vs. North Carolina Prediction
North Carolina 26, Duke 23
Duke -2.5, o/u: 65.5
5: Kareem Hunt – 1: Ezekiel Elliott … 1
Must See Rating
5: The Vietnam War – 1: Young Sheldon … 3.5