Whereas the Tar Heels are jockeying for a better seed in the ACC, the Yellow Jackets have been one of the whipping boys of the conference. Who should we back with our college basketball picks when these two teams meet up?
We have to admit: we were a little surprised to see the Tar Heels favored on the NCAA basketball odds by only 5.5 points for this road test against the Yellow Jackets. It's a solid number that can be found across the board at every top sportsbook.
The O/U meanwhile is quoted at 139.5, so we should be seeing a pretty high tempo to this ACC battle.
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
The Yellow Jackets come in having lost three games in a row, which was topped off by a gut-wrenching overtime loss to Clemson. Georgia Tech had fought its way back from a massive first-half deficit, only to fall short again in overtime.
Marcus Georges-Hunt put the team on his back, once again, and was instrumental in leading the Yellow Jackets back from that huge hole. He finished with 20 points, nine rebounds, six assists and three steals in 41 minutes of action. He only had one turnover to boot in what was one of his most effective performances of his college career. However, as a team, Georgia Tech shot just 33.3 percent from the floor, and that just wasn't going to cut it, particularly since the game was on the road.
If the Yellow Jackets are to make a game of it against the long and athletic Tar Heels, Hunt is going to have to have another big game, but more importantly he's going to have to get some help around him. That hasn't happened very often this season and is the main reason why Georgia Tech finds itself near the bottom of the ACC.
North Carolina Tar Heels
They've suffered a few losses here recently, but no one should be counting out the Tar Heels. They've shown they can hang with the big boys this season and have recorded some nice wins already, so it'd be foolish to forget about them come tournament time. With a lot of talent within their ranks and a great head coach roaming the sidelines, UNC will be just fine.
The Tar Heels haven't been off since a nice 73-64 road win over Miami (FL). Brice Johnson had a huge double double and J.P Tokoto and Marcus Paige also had big games, as UNC shot just above 45 percent overall and made enough plays down the stretch to get the win.
There's still work to be done, however. The Tar Heels will want to close out the regular season strong and earn as high of a seed as possible heading into the tournament, so they should be coming out very focused again tonight. UNC has been a very dangerous offensive team throughout the season and it shouldn't be any different this evening, barring a total collapse.
NCAA Basketball Pick
We feel confident in UNC's chances of going into Georgia Tech and leaving with a fairly comfortable win.
Truth is, the Yellow Jackets have given us little reason, if any, to have faith in them, regardless of whether or not they'll be at home. They havne't protected their home court with much gusto anyway, and their recent performances have left a lot to be desired.
Meanwhile, the Tar Heels still have a lot to play for and hold an advantage in essentially every major statistical category. They're the road team on this occasion, but they shouldn't have much trouble scooting past the Yellow Jackets. Add UNC to your collection of college basketball picks for a busy Tuesday night.
NCAA Basketball Pick: North Carolina Tar Heels -5.5 at 5Dimes