NCAA Basketball Picks: North Carolina vs. Maryland

Jeff Grant

Wednesday, March 6, 2013 1:38 PM GMT

The Maryland Terrapins and North Carolina Tar Heels played a low-scoring affair in their first meeting, but things will likely change as they close out their regular season series Wednesday night.

The Maryland Terrapins and North Carolina Tar Heels played a low-scoring affair in their first meeting, but things will likely change as they close out their regular season series Wednesday night.

Let’s take a closer look at the betting line for this Atlantic Coast Conference affair at the Comcast Center, with the opening tip scheduled for 7:00 p.m. ET on ESPN.

Getting hot at the right time

North Carolina has won 11 of 14 games since starting ACC play 0-2 in early January, as it comes off an impressive 79-58 victory over the Florida State Seminoles as 14-point home favorites Sunday.

The Tar heels are 14-4 straight up (SU) and 7-10-1 against the spread (ATS) in March the last two-plus seasons, with the UNDER going 9-8 in that situation.

Alternate world

Maryland has alternated wins and losses over its last seven games, as it earned a 67-57 triumph over the Wake Forest Demon Deacons as two-point road favorites last Saturday, while going UNDER the posted total of 136.5.

The Terrapins are 1-6 SU and 0-6-1 ATS off a win against a conference rival, which is important to consider when making your college basketball picks, considering the line is a pick’ em in the betting market.

Recent history

College basketball handicappers may have a hard time avoiding the Tar Heels at the betting window, considering they’ve gone 5-0 SU and 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings in this series.

On Jan. 19, North Carolina captured a 62-52 victory over Maryland as 5.5-point home NCAAB odds favorites, while going UNDER the posted total of 147.  

Situational handicapping

From a situational standpoint, it’s very important to monitor the odds movement in this matchup, as I’ll be basing my entire selection on the closing line.

Maryland is 2-0 SUATS as home underdogs of three points or less the last two-plus seasons, with the OVER cashing in both of those contests.

On the other end, North Carolina is 4-0 SU and 3-1 ATS as road favorites within the same point range, while going above the betting total in all four games.

[gameodds]14/223279/43/us[/gameodds]

Prediction

I’m going to recommend that readers play the total as one of their college basketball picks this Wednesday night, but I suggest waiting it out to see if a lower number becomes available in the market.

The OVER is 18-5 in the last 23 meetings in this series.

College Basketball Pick: Over 145.5 at BetOnline