South Second Round Betting Picks: #8 North Carolina Tar Heels vs #9 Villanova Wildcats

2013 NCAA Tournament – South Region Second Round
#8 North Carolina Tar Heels vs #9 Villanova Wildcats
Friday, March 22, 2013, 7:20 pm Eastern, TV: TNT
Sprint Center – Kansas City, Missouri
Opening Line: North Carolina -4 1/2
Current Line: North Carolina -4 1/2
Opening Total: 142
Current Total: 143
Opening Money Line: North Carolina -175 / Villanova +155
Current Money Line: North Carolina -175 / Villanova +155

 

North Carolina is a 4.5 point favorite over Villanova Friday.

North Carolina is a 4.5 point favorite over Villanova Friday.

As recently as a month ago it wasn’t certain that NCAA tournament stalwarts VIllanova and North Carolina would even make the NCAA field. However, both rebounded down the stretch and will face each other in the South region Friday in Kansas City. The winner will face either #1 seed Kansas or #16 Western Kentucky in Sunday’s third round.

The #8 seeded North Carolina Tar Heels  are 24-10 this season and were third in the ACC with a 12-6 record. The Tar Heels lost to regular season champ Miami 87-77 in Sunday’s ACC Championship game. Villanova is 20-13 overall and tied for 7th in the Big East with Connecticut. The Wildcats lost to Louisville 74-55 in the Big East quarterfinals last week.

North Carolina leads the series 10-4 against Villanova, including 4-1 in NCAA tournament games. The Tar Heels won the last game 83-69 in the 2009 Final Four in Detroit.

North Carolina is coached by Roy Williams. The Tar Heels have losses to Butler in the Maui Invitational, at Indiana, at Texas, at Virginia, Miami three times, Duke twice and at NC State. The Tar Heels have key wins at Long Beach St, against Mississippi St in Maui, UAB, East Carolina, UNLV, Florida St three times, Maryland three times, Georgia Tech twice, at Boston College, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest, NC State, and at Clemson. UNC is 19-12 ATS and the total is 14-17 this season.

North Carolina is outscoring teams 77-69 this season. The Tar Heels are #14 in scoring nationally. North Carolina is shooting 44.4% from the field and 37.4% from 3 point range. The Tar Heels make 67.2% of their free throws. UNC averages 38.9 rebounds per game and allows 33.6 per game. The Tar heels are #16 in rebounding but #303 out of 347 teams in rebounds allowed. UNC opponents’ are shooting 42.2% from the field and 35% from 3 point range. The Tar Heels are averaging 17 assists, 8 steals, 3 blocks, and 12 turnovers. UNC is second nationally in assists.

Forward James Michael McAdoo averages 14.4 points, 7.4 rebounds, 1.1 assists, and 1.4 steals per game. Guard/forward Reggie Bullock averages 14.2 points, 6.6 rebounds, 2.9 assists, and 1.3 steals per game. Guard P.J. Hairston averages 14.3 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 1.3 assists. Guard Marcus Paige averages 8 points, 2.7 rebounds, 4.7 assists, and 1.2 steals a game. Leslie McDonald averages 7.4 points, 2.1 rebounds, and 1.2 assists per game. Guard Dexter Strickland averages 8 points, 2.5 rebounds, 4.2 assists, and 1.2 steals. Forward Brice Johnson averages 5.6 points, and 3.3 rebounds per game.  Forward Joel James is doubtful with a concussion.

Villanova is coached by Jay Wright. The Wildcats are one of the most unpredictable teams in the country with wins against some of the elite teams in the country and some losses to bad teams. Villanova has losses to Alabama in New York, Columbia, at LaSalle, Temple, at Syracuse, Pitt twice, Providence twice, at Notre Dame, at Cincinnati, and at Seton Hall. The Wildcats have wins over Marshall, Purdue in New York, at Vanderbilt, at Penn, St. Joseph’s, Delaware, St. John’s twice, South Florida twice, Louisville, Syracuse, at DePaul, at UConn, Rutgers, Marquette, and Georgetown. Villanova is 19-10-1 ATS and the total is 12-16 this season.

Villanova is outscoring teams 68-65 this season. The Wildcats are shooting 41.5% from the field and 33.6% from 3 point range. Villanova makes 72% of their free throws. The Wildcats average 36.3 rebounds per game and allow 29.1. Villanova opponents are shooting 40.2% from the field and 36.6% from 3 point range. The Wildcats have one of the worst three point defenses in the country. The Wildcats average 12 assists, 8 steals, 3 blocks, and 16 turnovers per game.

Forward JayVaughn Pinkston averages 13.1 points, 4.9 rebounds, 1.8 assists, and 1 steal a game. Guard Ryan Arcidiacono averages 12 points, 2.1 rebounds,  3.5 assists, and 1.1 steals per game. Guard Darrun Hilliard averages 11.2 points, 2.7 rebounds, 1.6 assists, and 1.6 steals per game. Mouphtaou Yarou averages 9.7 points, and 7.8 rebounds. James Bell averages 8.7 points, 4.2 rebounds, 1.4 assists, and 1.2 steals per game. Tony Chennault, Daniel Ochefu, Maurice Sutton, and Achraf Yacoubou make up the rest of the rotation.

Villanova is 5-0 ATS after failing to cover, 4-0 after a straight up loss, 4-1-1 in non-conference games, 4-1 against teams with winning records, and against ACC teams, 16-7 overall, 5-12 in neutral site games, 1-10 in Friday games, and 0-4 in NCAA Tournament games.

North Carolina is 7-1 ATS in Friday games, 5-1 after failing to cover, 8-3 overall, 48-19-1 after a straight up loss, 7-3 against teams with winning records, 13-6 in NCAA Tournament games, and 2-5 in neutral site games.

North Carolina started playing a lot better when they went to a smaller line-up, in February. Most of their losses are to Miami and Duke. The Tar Heels lost 5 times this season to the Blue Devils and Hurricanes. Villanova meanwhile is hard to figure out. The Wildcats are much better at home, though. I like North Carolina to win a close game, but it wouldn’t surprise me to see Nova pull off the upset.

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