It’s Gameday and perhaps the biggest Gameday of the season so far! Your 11th ranked Louisville Cardinals are down in Durham, North Carolina to take on 3rd ranked Duke in a battle for First Place in the ACC! Louisville looks to avenge last year’s heartbreaking loss at the KFC Yum! Center. Last year, Louisville led the Blue Devils 59-36 with 9:45 to go before being outscored 35-10 in the remaining time and ended up losing the lead and the game 71-69. That loss altered the entire course of Louisville’s season. The Cards will be looking for redemption and revenge from last year’s painful loss. Also, the Cards are needing another big time win. The Cards are 1-2 against Top 25 Competition this season and with Michigan’s recent struggles, that win on December 3rd looks less impressive. Duke comes in at 15-2 on the season and a shocking loss on Tuesday Night at Clemson. They are looking to get back on track.
KEYS TO VICTORY:
1. Production from Nwora and Enoch. For Louisville to win this game, Jordan Nwora has to play his best game and I’m not even talking simply scoring. He can’t let one aspect of his game effect the remainder of his game. If he’s not scoring, he can still box out and make those hustle plays. Steven Enoch has been in a rut since the FSU game. Can’t have that tonight. Duke Center, Enoch must be on his game.
2. Hit free throws. Louisville has really struggled at the line this season especially on the road. In a hostile environment like Cameron Indoor, the Cards must capitalize early and consistently on its opportunities at the line.
3. Guard the perimeter. Louisville has had its struggles with defending the perimeter. They do a great job at defending the paint, but that leaves shooters open constantly. They have 5 shooters on the court at all times.
4. Handle Adversity. This team for the most part has dome a great job on the road in late game situations. Continue to do a great job.
This game will come down to matchups. Duke has the guard play advantage and that worries me. It will be a competitive game, but Duke is almost unstoppable at home.
Prediction: Duke 74, Louisville 68