Number four seed Virginia takes on the surging Wolfpack in the quarter-finals and we have our NCAA basketball pick for the game ready. These two are set to go to battle at 2:25 this afternoon, with the Cavaliers favored by 2.5.
Following UNC/Maryland it'll be the Cavaliers versus the
Wolfpack, with a spot in the ACC tournament semi-finals up for grabs. Tipoff is
scheduled for 2:25 PM EST.
Virginia has been off since Sunday. They outlasted Maryland
75-72 to close out the regular season, but did fall short of covering (-4.5)
the spread. Mike Scott dropped 35 points and added 11 boards in the win.
The Wolfpack may be a little more in sync after playing and
performing well in the opening round yesterday. They topped Boston College
78-57 in what was a solid all-around performance.
Today's quarter-final matchup sees N.C. State as the minimal
underdogs in the NCAA basketball odds. At time of writing Mark Gottfried's team
was getting three points at most NCAA Basketball betting sites.
Who Reaches Last Four?
What happened in the regular season showdown between these
teams? The Cavaliers won by a point, with Lorenzo Brown missing a 3-pointer at
the buzzer that would have won it for the Wolfpack.
For Virginia, Mike Scott, as per usual, logged a team-high
18 points on 5-of-11 shooting. The Wolfpack got 11+ points from C.J. Leslie,
C.J. Williams and Richard Howell. Howell was a force to be reckoned with,
adding a season-high 18 rebounds in the narrow defeat.
One thing worth noting: N.C. State doubled up Virginia on
the glass (40-20), thanks in large part to Howell, and barely lost despite
hitting only 2-of-15 from three.
What the Wolfpack lack defensively as compared to their
upcoming opponents, they more than make up for on the boards: over their last
five they're averaging more than 10 rebounds more per game than are the Cavaliers.
Virginia has been terrific on the defensive side of things
all season long, but they run into a N.C. State team that's averaging 46.6
percent shooting and 73.6 PPG over their previous five contests.
The Cavaliers have covered the spread in six straight
meetings with the Wolfpack. Regardless, I'm of the opinion that streak comes to
an end today in Atlanta, Georgia. In a tournament that hasn't seen too many
upsets (Clemson's opening round loss aside), I see what some may consider a
surprising win in the cards for State.
Backing the Wolfpack
With Assane Sene out due to suspension and Malcolm Brogdon
done for the season after undergoing surgery, Virginia is down to only seven
players. Plus, they're a little too reliant on Mike Scott's offensive production
for my liking.
I also think the Wolfpack will simply want it more as
there's more at stake for them. They're still on the bubble for a NCAA
tournament berth, while the Cavaliers are already a lock to be included.
Virginia isn't going to simply lay down by any means, but I really believe N.C.
State, whose five starters all average in double figures, will go the extra
The Wolfpack have gone an amazing 10-3 ATS away from home
this season and I'm betting on them adding another spread win to that tally
FREE NCAA Basketball Picks: N.C. State Wolfpack +3
Wolfpack are 3-0-1 ATS in their last 4 games overall
Cavaliers are 1-2-1 ATS in their last 4 games overall
UNDER is 7-3 in the last 10 head-to-head meetings
Cavaliers are 6-0 ATS in the last 6 head-to-head meetings