20* Bowl GAME OF THE WEEK on Duke +8
Cincinnati vs. Duke,
12/27/2012 18:30 EDT,
Score: 48 - 34
Point Spread: +8/-105 Duke
The Blue Devils are ecstatic to be playing in a bowl game this season. This is their first trip to a bowl game since 1994. Head coach David Cutcliffe has his best team in five years with the program, and that really showed this season. These players want to be here more than the Cincinnati Bearcats.
Cincinnati had high hopes coming into the season of winning the Big East to play in a BCS bowl game. That didn’t happen, so it could be let down by the fact that it is only going to the Belk Bowl against a 6-6 Duke team. Plus, head coach Butch Jones has accepted the job at Tennessee, so that is going to be a huge distraction for these players leading up to the game.
Duke played a daunting schedule down the stretch, which is the biggest reason for its 0-4 finish. It played Florida State, Clemson, Georgia Tech and Miami, which are arguably the four best teams in the ACC. It will certainly be battle-tested coming into this one after such a tough finish to the year.
Cincinnati is 0-7 ATS in road games vs. very bad defensive teams who give up 34 or more points/game since 1992. The Bearcats are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 bowl games. The Blue Devils are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 non-conference games. Bet Duke Thursday.