The online gambling number could go even higher if Butler center Matt Howard misses the game.
Internet gambling companies list Duke as a 7-point favorite on Monday against Butler. The Blue Devils were very impressive on Saturday as they routed West Virginia while Butler just slipped past Michigan State. In that win, Butler center Matt Howard suffered a head injury and he may not play on Monday. It would be a huge loss for Butler since Howard averages 11.8 points and 5.3 rebounds per game. Reports had Howard improving on Sunday and it looked like he might play on Monday.
Butler is not getting much respect in online gambling regardless of whether or not Howard plays. Duke was so impressive against West Virginia that Internet gambling companies have made the line pretty high. Butler has won 25 games in a row, have a big home court edge, yet Duke is a 7-point favorite. "One thing about us is there's never a sense of fear," said Ronald Nored, "We're confident in everything we do."
Duke is a number one seed and a three-time national champion. Head coach Mike Krzyzewski knows how to win games in the NCAA Tournament and Duke is expected to win on Monday. Krzyzewski would tie Adolph Rupp for second place all-time with four national championships if Duke wins. He has a record 76 wins in the NCAA tournament. The Blue Devils were led on Saturday in the online gambling win by their potent trio of Jon Scheyer, Kyle Singler and Nolan Smith.
Butler plays excellent defense so this could be a low scoring game on Monday. Duke will not be overlooking Butler. "If you judge them by their size or their exterior, they can really take you by surprise," Duke's Jordan Davidson said. "We can't overlook them." Butler is led by Gordon Hayward and if Howard doesn’t play then Hayward will need to have a huge game if the Bulldogs are to have a chance. In 12 of the last 13 games, Butler has held its opponents to 60 points or less. Shutting down Duke may be more difficult. The Blue Devils have the ability to hit shots from the outside and they have so many ways to score. The Blue Devils are also excellent defensively and they control the boards.