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March Madness Betting – Golden Eagles vs. Tar Heels Free Sweet 16 Pick

2011 NCAA Tournament Predictions – Marquette Golden Eagles vs UNC Tar Heels Preview

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#11 Marquette vs. #2 North Carolina
SWEET 16 – NCAA TOURNAMENT BRACKET – EAST REGION
Date/Time: Friday, March 25, 7:15 p.m. ET
Venue: Prudential Center, Newark, NJ
Broadcast: CBS
Marquette Golden Eagles vs. North Carolina Tar Heels Betting Lines from Sportsbook.com
Money Line: Marquette +170, North Carolina -210
Spread: North Carolina -4.5
Over/Under: 150
Check Out Our Indepth CBB ATS Betting Stats For This Game —>
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Marquette Golden Eagles (22-14)

All that hype for the Big East and it’s UConn and Marquette of all teams that reach the Sweet 16. Go figure. While Marquette has gotten some luck in the NCAA tournament – its first two opponents, Xavier and Syracuse, combined for 31 turnovers – it’s time to take notice that this team isn’t a pushover as a No. 11 seed.

Darius Johnson-Odom has been the X-factor for Marquette so far in the tourney, tallying 19 and 17 points in his two games. Marquette has overcome underdog status to beat the spread in both March Madness matchups and is 4-1 ATS over its last five overall.

North Carolina Tar Heels (28-7)

North Carolina reminds me of Duke so far in the NCAA Tournament. Like the Blue Devils, UNC is a deep, talent-rich squad. And, like the Blue Devils, UNC had to battle through a scare against an underdog team in the round of 32. Online Sports Betting at Sportsbook

On the bright side, the Tar Heels’ offense is flying. They dropped 102 points on Long Island and 86 on Washington. Harrison Barnes, not surprisingly, delivered by averaging 23 points over those two wins. Guard Kendall Marshall averaged 12 assists over that span. Tyler Zeller was the biggest story. The seven-footer exploded for 32 points against Long Island and dropped 23 on Washington.

North Carolina’s problem in the tourney so far has been defense. It let both Long Island and Washington top the 80-point barrier. The fast-paced game plays into UNC’s style but, sooner or later, the Tar Heels have to commit more to stopping their opponents from scoring.

Trends:

Under is 17-5 in MARQ last 22 overall.
Over is 11-4 in MARQ last 15 NCAA Tournament games.
Over is 7-3 in MARQ last 10 non-conference games.

The pick:

UNC relied on its superior depth and skill to outgun Long Island and Washington. I don’t see Marquette’s attack posing an especially different or tougher threat than those opponents did. Sure, some say UNC is streaky, but guess what? It’s a hot streak right now. I think the Tar Heels will keep firing on all cylinders, especially with Marshall distributing the ball beautifully without turning it over so far in the tourney.

Now that they got their scare against Washington out of the way, I could see the Tar Heels having an easier time with Marquette.

Marquette vs North Carolina prediction: North Carolina 82, Marquette 70

Money Line: North Carolina -210
Spread: North Carolina -4.5
Over/Under: OVER 150

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About Shea Matthews

Shea Matthews the Senior Writer at CP. Lives and breathes sports. He made the transition from athlete to sports journalist at a young age, writing in TV & national papers. Shea applies his knowledge to sports betting + handicapping daily, and shares winning picks with the world.


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