Pick North Carolina -3.5 Due to NC State's Weak Home Record

Jeff Grant

Wednesday, January 14, 2015 3:12 PM GMT

North Carolina has absolutely owned this Atlantic Coast Conference series, which makes it worth backing as a road favorite against NC State Wednesday night.

Close Encounters
North Carolina has played consecutive one-point games for the first time since 1981, which is important to consider when looking over the college basketball odds, as it looks to build off a 72-71 come-from-behind victory at home over Louisville last Saturday.

The Tar Heels are capable of winning close games due to their play on the defensive end, as they’ve held 13 of their first 16 opponents under 40 percent shooting from the field. It’s important to point out that the squad leads the ACC in offensive rebounding percentage, but occupies the 14th spot in terms of grabbing boards on the other end of the floor.

Over the last two-plus seasons, the program is 5-1 SU and 4-2 ATS as road favorites of 3.5 to 6 points.

 

Rush the Court
NC State has alternated wins and losses over its last eight affairs, which can’t be ignored when making your NCAA basketball picks, especially since its last victory came at home over second-ranked Duke Sunday.

The Wolfpack are finishing an eight-day stretch of playing three consecutive games with ranked opponents, as they currently sit 30th in terms of RPI nationally—benefited by a strength of schedule that ranks seventh.

Sports bettors will find that the team is 11-20 SU and 18-11-2 ATS as underdogs dating back to the start of the 2012-13 campaign.

 

On the Road
The Tar Heels deserve to be laying points at PNC Arena Wednesday, as they’ve compiled a 59-32 SU record on the road in ACC play under longtime head coach Roy Williams.

Williams has won 27 of his 29 career meetings against NC State, with 22 wins and just two losses coming during his time on campus in Chapel Hill.

 

Guard Play
The Wolfpack could be a team to watch if they make the field of 68 in the upcoming 2015 NCAA Tournament, as they’ll be led by a talented trio of guards, with Cat Barber, Trevor Lacey and Ralston Turner combining to average 41.6 points per game.

Lacey is the main player to watch coming off a 21-point performance against Duke, as he’s shooting 46.3 percent from beyond the arc after sitting out a year due to transferring from Alabama.

 

Prediction
I’m going to recommend that readers back the Tar Heels as one of their ATS basketball plays, as the Wolfpack have failed to cover the number in 14 of their last 20 home games versus teams with a winning road record.

Free College Basketball Pick: North Carolina Tar Heels -3.5 at Bookmaker

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