Sweet 16 Preview: Can Utah contain Okafor?

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Duke’s first two games weren’t very competitive (sorry, Carla), with Duke winning by 29 in its first game and 19 in its second. Utah on the other hand, has been in some closer games, and took out 4th-seeded Georgetown by 11 points due to free throws. The two teams face off tonight at 9:45 p.m. ET on CBS for a chance to advance to the Elite 8.

Duke’s Jahlil Okafor is on a roll averaging 25 points in his last three games, and seems to be improving with every game under his belt. Utah has a big freshman by the name of Jakob Poeltl, a 7-footer from Austria who will no doubt be on Okafor during Friday night’s matchup.

This game has some fantastic guard match-ups along with the battle of the bigs. Utah’s Delon Wright, averages 14.7 points and 5.2 assists, and has a height advantage over the smaller Duke guards at 6-5. Quinn Cook has put in some great work in the tournament averaging 18.5 points per game, and sets up a great match-up against Wright.

Players to Watch

For Duke, who other than Okafor? In his last game, he scored 27 points and had 9 rebounds.

For Utah, Wright had 12 points, 5 assists, and 5 rebounds in the win over Georgetown.

Prediction

Vegas has this game at Duke by three, and I feel like Duke’s got the stronger bench and will have fresh legs down the stretch. Dukies win by single digits.

Up Next

The winner of this game takes on the winner of UCLA and Gonzaga on Sunday night for a chance at the Final Four.

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