Take Virginia For Your NCAA Basketball Picks To Control Pace & Tempo Over North Carolina St.

Charles Stark

Monday, February 15, 2016 12:53 PM GMT

Virginia has beaten North Carolina St. the last three times they have met, so will that trend continue or can the Wolfpack break it when added to our NCAA basketball picks?

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Free NCAA Basketball Pick: Virginia -12.5
Best Line Offered: at Heritage

 

NCAA Basketball Odds Overview
NCAA basketball odds have come out with Virginia -12.5 favorite like at BetOnline -110. This seems like a lot of points against a pretty scrappy North Carolina state team, but I expect Virginia to come out and get a lot of defensive stops. For one of my NCAA picks today, I will back the Cavaliers minus the points to take care of business at home.

 

North Carolina State Wolfpack
The Wolfpack are averaging 76.2 points per game while shooting 43.1% from the field and allowing 73.2 points per game on 42.7% shooting from the field. On the season, they are 12-10 overall against the spread, and 7-3 on the road. Although they have had some pretty high finals in their last six games, tonight they face a team in which they've had some difficulty scoring the past couple of years. North Carolina State is really young, and I think they will have trouble finding ways to score against Virginia's extremely good pack line defense. Offensively, they do try to push tempo averaging 60.8 field goal attempts per game which ranks in the top 50 in the country. However, that tempo will be limited tonight against Virginia team that is very good and controlling the basketball. Percentagewise, there is nothing that stands out as they rank in the bottom half of the country in most categories, but they do rebound the ball well averaging 40.7 boards per game which ranks 21st in the country. Defensively, there is also not a lot to get excited about, but they do allow opponents to shoot just 45.5% under two point shots which ranks in the better part of the country. After that, they have some of the worst statistics in the ACC, but luckily for them Virginia doesn't push the pace very much so although I anticipate they will not cover the spread, he might not get completely blown out.

 

Virginia Cavaliers
Virginia's averaging 71 points per game while shooting 49.4% from the field, and allowing 59.8 points per game on 41.7% shooting from the field. On the season, they are 11-12 overall against the spread, and 5-5 at home. That was in extremely tough loss they just experienced at Duke, but they simply couldn't hit anything from beyond the arc averaging under 20% from distance. I anticipate though that type of loss will only make this team tougher come March. Offensively, they are very patient with the basketball averaging just 52.6 field goal attempts per game which ranks in just about the bottom of the NCAA basketball. However, they are very efficient and rank in the top 20 in shooting efficiency, effective field-goal percentage, overall and three-point shooting percentage. Defensively, they are there one of the best in the country and can be very difficult to score against at times. They control tempo as well as anybody allowing opponents just 49.4 field-goal attempts per game with them making just 20.6 of those, ranking fifth and sixth in the country respectively. North Carolina State has had a lot of trouble scoring against Virginia the past two years, and I don't believe they will break that recent tradition tonight. As well, I expect the Cavaliers to shoot a lot better from distance than they just did against Duke.

Virginia will most likely put the clamps down on North Carolina State and will win this game well into double digits. They are much better on both ends of the floor, and I recommend for one of your NCAA basketball picks to back Virginia of minus the points when these two teams meet tonight. Expect Virginia to control tempo, shoot the three very well, and for North Carolina State to struggle putting the ball in the basket.