North Carolina vs. Ohio State - 12/23/17 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Ohio State Buckeyes (10-3) at North Carolina Tar Heels (10-2)
College Basketball: Saturday, December 23, 2017 at 1:30 pm (Smoothie King Center)
The Line: North Carolina Tar Heels -6.5 -- Over/Under: 158 See the Latest Odds
We have an entertaining college basketball matchup on Saturday afternoon, as the Ohio State Buckeyes face off against the #5 North Carolina Tar Heels as part of the CBS Sports Classic.
The Ohio State Buckeyes will look for a huge statement win to improve on their 10-3 record so far this season, including a 5 game winning streak thanks to their 94-65 victory over the Citadel in their last outing. Keita Bates-Diop led the team with 17 points on 7 of 11 shooting with 3 triples and 4 assists with a pair of steals, while Kam Williams added 17 points of his own on 7 of 13 shooting with 3 threes as well. C.J. Jackson added 13 points and a team-high 7 assists, while Andrew Dakich chipped in 10 points to round out the scoring in double figures for the Buckeyes in the win. Micah Potter and Kyle Young each chipped in 4 points and a team-high 8 rebounds, with Potter adding 3 steals in the winning effort. Bates-Diop leads the team with an average of 18.2 points and 8.9 rebounds per game, while Jackson is the team’s top assist man, dishing out 4.4 assists per game this season. As a team, Ohio State is scoring 79.5 points per game on 49.5% shooting from the field, 35.5% from behind the arc and 72.5% from the foul line this season.
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The #5 North Carolina Tar Heels will look to rebound after having their 5 game winning streak snapped thanks to a 79-75 upset loss to Wofford in their last outing. Joel Berry II led the team with 23 points on 7 of 16 shooting with 3 threes and some free throws, while Luke Maye added 17 points with 14 rebounds and a pair of blocks for the double-double. Garrison Brooks and Cameron Johnson each added 10 points to round out the scoring in double figures for UNC in the losing effort. Theo Pinson dished out a team-high 4 assists, while Kenny Williams added 9 points. Maye leads the team by averaging a double-double per game with 19.2 points and 10.6 rebounds, while Pinson is the team’s leading assist man with 4.7 assists per game this season. As a team, UNC is scoring 86.2 points per game on 48.1% shooting from the field, 38.3% from behind the arc and 70.7% from the foul line this season.
Ohio State is 8-3-1 ATS in their last 12 games against the ACC and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 non-conference games while the under is 4-0 in their last 4 games overall. North Carolina is 3-0-1 ATS in their last 4 games following a loss and 7-0-1 ATS in their last 8 games following a game where they failed to cover the spread while the under is 11-5 in their last 16 games against the Big Ten. Ohio State is 0-4 ATS in the last 4 meetings between these two teams.
I have no doubt in my mind that Tar Heels coach Roy Williams ripped into his guys after that loss to Wofford and they have that on their minds and are coming into this game ticked off. However, if this game were in Chapel Hill, I’d lay the points, but on a neutral floor, I think Ohio State has enough going for them offensively to at least keep this one close, so I will take a chance with Ohio State and the points.