North Carolina State vs. Pittsburgh - ACC Tournment - 3/11/15 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Pittsburgh Panthers (19-13) at North Carolina State Wolfpack (19-12)
College Basketball: Wednesday, March 11, 2015 at 7:00 pm (Greensboro Coliseum)
The Line: North Carolina State Wolfpack -3 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds
TV: ESPN 2 / ACC Network
The Pittsburgh Panthers and NC State Wolfpack face off at Greensboro Coliseum this Wednesday night in the 2nd round of the ACC Tournament.
The Pittsburgh Panthers finished the regular season with a 19-13 record and earned the 10th seed in the ACC Tournament with an 8-10 conference record. Pittsburgh has one of the better backcourts in the ACC however can have trouble creating turnovers and allow opponents to get quality looks against their defense. Pittsburgh is ranked 66th in the RPI Standings and has played the 42nd ranked SOS. Pittsburgh picked up some quality wins on the season as they were able to defeat both Notre Dame (76-72) and North Carolina (89-76) at home during the season.
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Pittsburgh has averaged 67.3 ppg (ranked 176th) on 44.7% shooting (ranked 103rd). The Panthers average 16.5 apg (ranked 9th) and have a 1.69 assist/turnover ratio (ranked 2nd). Pittsburgh averages just 9.8 turnovers per game (ranked 9th). Defensively, Pittsburgh is holding their opponents to an average of 65.3 ppg (ranked 144th) on 45.0% shooting (ranked 280th). The Panthers are allowing their opponents to shoot 35.5% from beyond the arc (ranked 248th) and pull down 33.19 total rpg (ranked 228th). Pittsburgh averages just 5.1 spg (ranked 305th) and 2.9 bpg (ranked 238th). On the season, Pittsburgh has been led by Jamel Artis (13.8 ppg, 5.9 rpg, 2.2 apg) and Michael Young (13.5 ppg, 7.3 rpg, 1.2 apg).
The NC State Wolfpack earned the 7th seed in the ACC Tournament with a 10-8 conference record and 19-12 overall record. NC State has shown throughout the year that they have the ability to beat anyone in the country, however, also have a tendency to be inconsistent and not beat teams they should be able to handle. The Wolfpack is ranked 43rd in the RPI Standings and has played the 5th ranked SOS. Some of the big wins that NC State has had this season include wins at home against Duke (87-75) and wins on the road against Louisville (74-65) and North Carolina (58-46).
NC State has averaged 70.6 ppg (ranked 89th) on 43.7% shooting (ranked 160th). The Wolfpack average 6.7 three-pointers per game (ranked 132nd) on 36.3% three-point shooting (ranked 89th). NC State commits only 10.7 turnovers per game (ranked 30th). Defensively, NC State is holding their opponents to 64.9 ppg (ranked 134th) on 39.8% shooting (ranked 42nd). The Wolfpack average 5.5 bpg (ranked 12th) and have a rebound margin of 3.5 (ranked 71st). Leading the way for NC State on the season has been Trevor Lacey (16.1 ppg, 4.5 rpg, 3.4 apg) and Ralston Turner (13.4 ppg, 3.3 rpg).
NC State shot 51.9% and held Pittsburgh to just 32.7% shooting from the field in the Wolfpack’s 68-50 victory against Pittsburgh in their only match-up on the season. Pittsburgh enters the ACC tournament on a three game losing streak as their offensive has struggled averaging just 60.3 ppg in that span. NC State has won 4 of their last 5 games and although they have probably secured an at-large NCAA bid with their big wins at Louisville and UNC, they don’t want to give the selection committee any reason to doubt their bid with an early exit in the ACC tournament. Jamie Dixon can game plan with the best of them and although I’m sure Pittsburgh will be ready for this one, NC State is the more talented team and I think they’ll pull away in the second half of this one. I’m taking NC State to cover this spread.