#8 North Carolina vs. #9 Wisconsin Odds
|Moneyline||+112 / -132|
|Time||Friday, 7:10 p.m. ET|
|Odds as of Sunday and via DraftKings|
How North Carolina & Wisconsin Match Up
|All stats via KenPom.|
Instant Analysis for UNC-Wisconsin
Two Power-5 teams headed in opposite directions face off with North Carolina taking on Wisconsin. The Tar Heels won three of their last four games, losing a close 69-66 battle to Florida State in the ACC Tournament. Wisconsin sputtered at the end of the regular season, losing five of its last six games. In the Big Ten Tournament, the Badgers barely escaped with a one-point win over Penn State before succumbing to Iowa by five points.
The Badgers are a veteran team, but haven’t played well for the majority of the second half of this season. Their size advantage inside will be negated by the trio of Garrison Brooks, Armando Bacot, and Day-Ron Sharpe. This will be a battle of pace between the up-tempo Tar Heels (45th in tempo per KenPom) and the sloth-like Badgers (326th per KenPom). — Mike Randle
What To Know About North Carolina
This UNC team isn’t much different than your usual Roy Williams team. The Heels obviously aren’t lacking in the talent department and have elite size inside, which is where they want to live on offense. They will dominate most teams on the glass, especially on the offensive end: UNC ranks first in the nation in offensive rebounding rate. When the Heels get a defensive rebound, they want to get out in transition, although they haven’t been very efficient when they do run.
The primary issue on offense is that they’ve had too many opportunities for offensive rebounds since they have major shooting woes at just 31.7% from 3 on the season (271st). Their backcourt is also super young, primarily made up of all freshman. Kerwin Walton has been lights out from 3, but nobody else has really been consistent from the outside. If either RJ Davis or Caleb Love can help out in that department, this UNC team can beat almost anybody on any given night. The defense has actually been outstanding for UNC this season, ranking 15th in Adjusted Efficiency, per KenPom. While UNC doesn’t take many 3s itself, it does encourage opponents to do so scheme-wise, so it can be exploited by great perimeter-shooting teams that will get open looks. — Stuckey
What To Know About Wisconsin
The Wisconsin Badgers’ efficiency makes them difficult to figure out. Wisconsin ranks 10th in adjusted efficiency margin because of its 30th ranking in offensive efficiency and 13th ranking on defense, according to KenPom. This is a perennial problem for the Badgers, whose slow tempo (323rd in the country) is pretty typical for the program under Bo Ryan-disciple Greg Gard. The Badgers lost five of their last six in the regular season and are not the flashiest pick for people looking for a team that can make a March run. You never know with Wisconsin, though.
It’s like a poor man’s Virginia and can beat anyone as long as it controls the pace. We know the Badgers won;’t beat themselves with free throw misses or turnovers, so they will be in almost every game. However, the question remains if they can actually execute on offense in the closing moments in order to pull out close games against top-tier competition? Greg Gard”s group hasn’t given us much to be hopeful about in those moments to end the season. Nate Reuvers has seemingly regressed this season, which hasn’t helped matters. — Stuckey
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