Wake Forest Demon Deacons vs. Notre Dame Fighting Irish – NCAAM March 9

ACC Tournament

(11) Notre Dame (10-14, 7-11) vs. (14) Wake Forest (6-15, 3-15)

  • Time: 4PM PST | 6PM CST | 7PM EST
  • Location: Greensboro Coliseum, Greensboro, NC
  • TV: ACC Network

Opening Tip

Notre Dame enters the game with confidence after it knocked Florida State out of the ACC title on Saturday after their 83-73 win snapped a four-game losing streak. Consistency on the offensive end of the floor could lead Notre Dame to win multiple games in this tournament.

Wake Forest first-year coach Steve Forbes has done a fantastic job in starting his rebuild through a pandemic where COVID-19 riddled the Demon Deacons in December. Forbes is a proven winner and his the only first year coach in the Power 7. Offensive consistency has also been an issue for the Deacons, who have lost seven in a row.

The Irish lead the series 7-5, but they are 0-2 against Wake Forest on a neutral court. Notre Dame is has also won it’s last four in the Greensboro Coliseum as it won the 2015 ACC title with wins over Miami, Duke, and North Carolina and last year’s win over Boston College before the tournament was called off of day 3 due to the covid pandemic.

Notre Dame took a 79-58 win at home in the two teams’ only meeting this season as the Fighting Irish held Wake to 34.4 percent from the floor and were led by Juwan Durham’s 18 points and nine rebounds.

Vs. The Spread

Wake Forest:

  • The Demon Deacons are 0-6 ATS in their last 6 games
  • Wake is 2-7 ATS in it’s last 9 games against Notre Dame
  • The Demon Deacons are 0-13 SU in their last 13 games played in March

Notre Dame:

  • The Fighting Irish check in at 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games
  • The OVER has been the play in 5 of the last 6 games between the Demon Deacons and the Fighting Irish
  • The total has gone UNDER in 14 of Notre Dame’s last 20 games in March

Last Time Out

Wake Forest dropped it’s seventh game in a row to Georgia Tech, 75-63. Ian DuBose led the Demon Deacons with 18 points and Daivien Williamson netted 15. Wake shot 44.4 percent from the floor, but their 16 turnovers did in any chances for them to pull out a ‘W’.

Notre Dame beat a Top 25 team for the first time in three years with the 83-73 rendering of the then-No. 11 Florida State Seminoles. The Fighting Irish opened up a 16-5 lead some five minutes into the game and never trailed. FSU got to win 74-70 with 2:34 remains, but a Prentiss Hubb layup and free throws down the stretch allowed the Irish to secure the win. Hubb led five Irish in double figures with 22 points.

Teams Spread Money Line Total Points
Wake Forest +8 (-106) +290 O 141 (-110)
Notre Dame -8 (-114) -360 U 141 (-110)

Advantage, Wake Forest

Wake Forest Demon Deacons LogoThe Demon Deacons made 10-of-23 treys in the loss in South Bend, so they will look to exploit a Notre Dame three-point defense that allows a 36.2 percent on the season. Leading scorer Daivien Williamson (30) and Jonah Antonio (38) will be the key shooters on the perimeter as Antonio made 40.4 percent of his threes. Forward Ismael Massoud can go inside-out which can change the matchups if he nails a couple of three balls as he had made 34 on the season.

Graduate transfer Ian DuBose has shown well for WFU since returning to the line up 10 games ago and he did not play against the Irish in the earlier game.

Key Demon Deacons Stat:

DuBose was out for medical reasons from Nov. 30-Jan. 28 and has shot 45.8 percent from the floor since returning to the lineup while his scoring average (11.2 ppg) is second on the team and his rebounding contribution (4.6 rpg) is now third.

X-Factor:

Wake Forest needs an inside presence from Ody Oguama (7.7 ppg, 5.4 rpg) and Isaiah Mucius (9.8 ppg, 4.9 rpg) to be able to win this game. Oguama only has 17 field goal attempts in his last five games while Mucius has 7.7 points on average in his last three outings.

Advantage, Notre Dame

Notre Dame Fighting Irish LogoThe Fighting Irish post four players n double figures and have the potential to be able to shoot their way to some wins this week. Prentiss Hubb (14.7 ppg, 4.5 apg) leads Notre Dame in scoring, made threes (60), and he is the key set up man as he leads in assists in averaging 37.5 minutes per game. The Irish like going to Nate Laszewski (13.8 ppg, 7.6 rpg) inside, but his 36 treys and 46.2 shooting percentage from three always garners looks.

Notre Dame nets 36.8 percent of it’s triples while Wake allowed 37.3 percent. Trey Wertz is a wild card on offense, who has averaged 11 points in his last three games.

Key Fighting Irish Stat:

Big man Juwan Durham has generally been known for his shot blocking and defending, but he has had an offensive revival for the Fighting Irish in averaging 10.9 points per game while shooting 60.7 percent from the floor. He has plenty of length, but Oguama and Mucius need to play physical against him in the paint to make him uncomfortable.

X-Factor:

The Irish only average 4.3 steals per game and force only 8.6 turnovers. This has been a bugaboo of their defensive issues as this allows opponents to hit their comfort zones in their offensive sets.

Winner: Notre Dame (-8) 73, Wake Forest 63

The Bets
Notre Dame -8
-114
Notre Dame Fighting Irish
-360
UNDER 141
-110
Sub Categories:
Kenneth Cross / Author

Kenneth Cross is a new entry to The Sports Geek staff as he has 25 years of experience in print, broadcast, and internet sports journalism. Cross is a lover of all sports, but college basketball is his passion. He estimates that he has seen around 1,500 college basketball games - live and in-person - and hopes that grows this season. If you listen to Radio, you have likely heard him on Sundays covering the Carolina Panthers for some 20 years. Now in Tampa Bay, he works as a national radio correspondent.