The North Carolina Tar Heels, the only No. 1 seed remaining will take on the 10th-seeded Syracuse Orange in the Final Four on Saturday night. The game is being played inside NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas and has a start time of 8:45 p.m. where it will be televised nationally on TBS. Currently the Final Four Odds for the game have the Tar Heels favored to pick up the win.
Final Four Odds
North Carolina -9.5
Syracuse is the first No. 10 seed to make a Final Four appearance. They looked strong in the second half in the team’s win over Virginia in the Elite Eight, but prior to that had really not played the best competition coming into this one.
There was a lot of talk about how they should have missed the NCAA Tournament, but all of that seems distant now.
UNC has looked like a dominant force the entire tournament, beating their opponents by an average of 16 points. Roy Williams is looking for his third title with the Tar Heels, having won in 2005 and 2009. The Tar Heels have played well on the defensive end of the floor and come in averaging just over 89 points per game through the tournament.
This all-ACC national semifinal will feature a pair of different styles — Carolina wants to run, Syracuse would certainly like to play at a much slower pace. The zone defense is a staple for Jim Boeheim teams, it has worked to get the Orange to this point in the tournament.
This is the fourth all-time meeting between the two schools in the tournament, but the first since 1987. It will be Williams’ eighth Final Four appearance compared to five for Boeheim.
Both teams have talent, but the Tar Heels are no-doubt the most talented team left. They are led by Marcus Paige and Brice Johnson, a combination of inside-out players that could prove to be a problem for the zone. Carolina will have to rebound the basketball well and their big front line will have to get decent looks while being contested.
Syracuse is a great story, but Carolina will prove to be too much.
Free Pick: North Carolina
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