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Michigan vs UNC Odds, Picks: Trust Tar Heels’ Experience?

Michigan vs UNC Odds, Picks: Trust Tar Heels’ Experience? article feature image
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Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: North Carolina’s Armando Bacot.

Michigan vs North Carolina Odds

Wednesday, Dec. 21
7 p.m. ET
ESPN
Michigan Odds
Spread Total Moneyline
+5
-110
155
-110o / -110u
+175
North Carolina Odds
Spread Total Moneyline
-5
-110
155
-110o / -110u
-205
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute college basketball odds here.

The Big Ten meets the ACC in a marquee matchup on Wednesday, as the Michigan Wolverines take on the North Carolina Tar Heels.

Michigan entered the season with tempered expectations, sitting just outside of KenPom‘s top 25. However, it has fallen 20 spots since then after failing every major test to date.

As for the Tar Heels, they looked to be on a mission to avenge their national title loss until they had a very rough Feast Week. Hubert Davis’ bunch went from No. 1 in the country to losing four straight and falling out of the top 25 in the AP Poll.

Though, with all that being said, each of these clubs appears to have gotten back on track. The Tar Heels are winners of three straight coming in, while Michigan has put together back-to-back victories.

So, what’s the best way to play this matchup of resurgent giants? Let’s dive in to find out.


Michigan Wolverines

When you look at this Michigan team, it’s clear who stands out. The big man in the middle, Hunter Dickinson.

The 7-foot-1 center is the focal point of this team and is the player to watch on both ends of the floor. He enters this matchup averaging 19.1 points, 8.4 rebounds and two blocks per game.

Although, this season, he’s become much more than an inside presence, as he’s shooting nearly 42% from beyond the arc. His ability to stretch the floor is a significant factor and could help him greatly in this matchup.

However, the Wolverines are not a one-man band, as freshman Jett Howard has come in and made an immediate impact. The 6-foot-8 guard has already proven to be a matchup problem, as he has the range to nail 3s but also the length and athleticism to finish around the rim.

While Michigan has talent on the offensive end of the floor, maintaining success against this North Carolina team is easier said than done.

Armando Bacot will bang with Dickinson down low, and Leaky Black — who’s a tremendous on-ball defender — will be on Howard.

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North Carolina Tar Heels

This North Carolina team has to come into this matchup with some confidence.

Its most recent win over a solid Ohio State team was impressive. The Tar Heels battled back from a double-digit deficit late in the second half before eventually taking the game in overtime.

To no one’s surprise, it was their big man, Bacot, who was the game MVP after posting a monstrous double-double.

Although, it will be interesting to see if he can be physical with Dickinson down low. Both of these big men do an excellent job of defending without fouling, but that may mean someone else will need to carry to load for the Tar Heels.

Enter the backcourt duo of Caleb Love and R.J. Davis. They have both been producing just fine, as Love is averaging 18.3 points per game with Davis at 15.7.

However, the one issue with the team offensively is its inability to sink 3s like it did last season. North Carolina ranks 302nd in 3-point percentage this season after finishing 64th last season.

Love and Davis are both shooting under 30% from beyond the arc. While they have gotten away from the long ball this year, they will need it against a Michigan team that matches up well with the Heels inside.


Michigan vs. North Carolina Betting Pick

The matchup of Bacot and Dickinson could very well make or break this game. However, it’s going to take someone else to step up offensively for either of these teams to be victorious.

In the end, you have to trust the more experienced North Carolina backcourt in this spot. The Tar Heels have the size to disrupt the Wolverines offense, and that could lead to some big runs — especially if 3s begin to fall.

Take the Tar Heels to cover the spread.

Pick: North Carolina -5 (Play to 5.5)

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