8:15 / ESPN : #14 Virginia @ #10 North Carolina — UNC -6.5, O/U 136
Virginia has lost 4 of 6 and that includes a very impressive 16 point win against Louisville. Virginia is all about their guards and wings, with very little production coming from the inside. One guy to watch in this one who has been coming on very strong lately is Freshman Ty Jerome. Perrantes and Shayok have been great all season but the problem in this matchup is going to be a lack of help from the interior, specifically on the glass. This Virginia Pack Line defense reminds me of a dominant run defense in football, just daring you to pass. They pack it in the paint, often leading to tons of threes by the opposing team late in shot clocks.
While Carolina has been much better from distance this year, I fully expect them to challenge Virginia inside due to their lack of size on the interior (outside of Jack Salt) with Meeks, Hicks, Bradley, and even Justin Jackson. There should be a post touch on nearly every possession and even if they don’t convert on the first attempt, UNC is #1 in the nation on the offensive glass. Turnovers and offensive rebounds create extra possessions and against a Virginia team that severely cuts down on the total number of possessions in a game, a team that can either turn them over or crash the offensive glass creates a crucial plus number of possessions that could make the entire difference in the game. I am expecting Carolina to pound it inside and crash the glass all game, leading to key buckets that will lead them to a double digit victory.
BET : North Carolina -6.5 — 3U