UNC Favored Over Oregon
The North Carolina Tar Heels will be looking to punch their ticket to a return trip to the NCAA Tournament championship game on Saturday night when they take on the Oregon Ducks as clear betting favorites for their Final Four game at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale.
The Tar Heels fell to the Villanova Wildcats in the national title game last year, but they have much more experience at this stage of the tournament than the Ducks – who last made the Final Four way back in 1939. This is the second game on Saturday; tipoff is set at 8:49pm ET.
North Carolina is listed as a 5-point favorite against Oregon for Saturday, and at -200 on the moneyline for the contest. The Ducks are +170 underdogs, with the OVER/UNDER at 152.
The Tar Heels stumbled in the ACC Tournament, getting knocked out of that event by the rival Duke Blue Devils, but they were still given the No. 1 seed in the South Region for March Madness. North Carolina then topped Texas Southern 103-64 as a 26.5-point favorite in their tournament opener before beating Arkansas 72-65 as 11.5-point chalk in the Round of 32.
North Carolina had little trouble with Butler in a 92-80 win as 7-point favorites in the Sweet 16, but needed last-second heroics to get past Kentucky 75-73 as a 2-point favorite in the Elite Eight. Justin Jackson had a team-high 19 points for the Tar Heels against the Wildcats, with Luke Maye adding 17 points and the game-winning shot to send the team to the Final Four.
Overall the Tar Heels are 2-1-1 against the spread at the NCAA Tournament this year, but they’ve only covered the spread three times in their last eight games dating back to February.
Ducks Riding High After Kansas Upset
The Ducks were set as the No. 3 seed in the Midwest Region, but pulled off an upset of top-seeded Kansas in the Elite Eight to get to the Final Four. Oregon beat Kansas handily, winning 74-60 as a 6.5-point underdog in the game as Tyler Dorsey poured in 27 points and Dillon Brooks added 17 points. Jordan Bell had 11 points and 13 rebounds in the matchup.
Oregon is 3-1 ATS at this year’s NCAA Tournament, covering in a 93-77 win over Iona as 15.5-point favorites in their opener, losing ATS when they edged Rhode Island 75-72 as 4.5-point chalk in the Round of 32, and getting past Michigan 69-68 in a pick’em Sweet 16 game.
Heading into the weekend North Carolina sits as the +145 favorite on the odds to win the NCAA Tournament, with Oregon at +525 on those betting futures. Gonzaga (+180) and South Carolina (+750) round out the Final Four field and will meet earlier in the day on Saturday.
North Carolina and Oregon last met back in November 2008, when the Tar Heels rolled to a 98-69 win as a 16.5-point betting favorite. That game was an UNDER result on the totals.
*Odds as of March 31, 2017