Miami vs. NC State Odds & Prediction: How to Bet Saturday’s ACC Clash
Getty Images. Pictured: NC State’s Terquavion Smith.
Miami vs. NC State Odds
This is an important game in the ACC between two NCAA Tournament hopefuls.
The Miami Hurricanes have gotten off to a 5-1 start in conference play and sit in sole possession of second place in the league.
Meanwhile, the NC State Wolfpack has fought its way back to .500 after a slow start to its ACC campaign, by virtue of consecutive wins over Duke and Virginia Tech.
The Wolfpack had some nice wins out of conference, and their only non-conference loss came by six to Kansas in the Bahamas.
These two teams have already met once this season, with Miami overcoming a double-digit deficit to come back and beat NC State, 80-73, in Coral Gables.
Let's discuss the prospects of the Wolfpack exacting some revenge when these two square off early Saturday in Raleigh.
Jim Larranaga has just about as good of a backcourt as you will see in the country.
Isaiah Wong has picked off right where he left off from a season ago, scoring the ball at all three levels and making plays for his teammates.
The addition of Nijel Pack from the transfer portal has been the perfect complement to Wong's game. The Kansas State transfer is explosive off the dribble and also extremely sound defensively.
Together, Wong and Pack are averaging 30 a night while also dishing out over six assists.
The Hurricanes have more than just two great guards, however, with Norchad Omier and Jordan Miller serving as two legitimate presences in the interior.
Miami does pretty much everything well offensively, but what stands out is how well the Canes share the ball.
If the Hurricanes want to complete a sweep of NC State, as well as pose a real threat come March, they need to clean things up defensively.
Miami ranks outside the top 100 in defensive efficiency, and keeping opponents to just one shot a trip is another issue given the overall lack of size on this roster.
There's no sugarcoating things — this was a do-or-die year for Kevin Keatts. Thus far into a still-young season, Keatts is delivering with his back against the wall.
The former UNC Wilmington head coach has had some talented teams in his tenure in Raleigh, but they haven't always meshed properly.
However, the 2022-23 Wolfpack are starting to fire on all cylinders.
Star point guard Terquavion Smith is the engine that makes this team run, but there are plenty of other pieces in the supporting cast. Veteran guard Casey Morsell is as steady as they come in the conference, and Jarkel Joiner has been really efficient scoring the ball from the perimeter.
North Carolina State now sits inside the top 50 in KenPom's offensive and defensive efficiency rankings, which is a sign of a much more balanced team than in recent years.
Better yet, the Wolfpack aren't turning the ball over, and they're taking it away from opponents at a high level.
I've been bullish on this team since November, and I still believe there's room for improvement as we inch closer to March.
Miami vs. NC State Betting Pick
There were plenty of points and plenty of fireworks when these teams faced off back in December. There will likely be a lot of scoring once again on Saturday, but I think the value lies with the home team here.
NC State went cold in the second half in Coral Gables, but the Pack still carved up Miami for most of that night.
I expect Smith and company to once again create a lot of open shots against a suspect Hurricane defense, and they should also be able to generate plenty of second-chance opportunities.
PNC Arena will be rocking for this one, and I don't think Keatts' team is going to let the locals down. Give me the Wolfpack to secure their third straight victory here, covering the number as a short favorite in the process.