College Basketball: Georgia Tech at North Carolina - GTech Favored

Team Page: Georgia Tech :: North Carolina

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North Carolina rebounded nicely from a surprising loss in its last outing, but now faces another upset-minded team.

The fourth-ranked Tar Heels look to build off an impressive win Saturday when they host Georgia Tech.

Oddsmakers have made North Carolina -13.5 point spread favorites (College Basketball Odds) for todays game, the over/under has been set at 160 total points (View College Basketball Sports Books).

North Carolina (16-2, 3-1 ACC) pounded No. 19 Clemson 77-55 on Wednesday, just four days after the Tar Heels - ranked No. 1 at the time - lost 94-88 at Virginia Tech.

"That's not the type of team that we are," said freshman Brandan Wright, who had 17 points against the Tigers after shooting just 1-of-8 against the Hokies. "We wanted to show who we were. We put that behind us and took it to the next game."

The Tar Heels rank second in the nation with 88.1 points per game and managed to outrun Clemson, which became the seventh opponent North Carolina has held under 60 points this season.

"If people want to run with us, we can run with them. That's what we want to do," Tar Heels guard Wes Miller said.

The Yellow Jackets (13-4, 2-2), meanwhile, are coming off last Saturday's 88-80 win over Florida State. That victory came three days after a 74-63 upset of No. 14 Duke.

Georgia Tech has also recorded wins over Purdue and No. 17 Memphis this season, but lost their first two conference games at Miami and Clemson.

"We needed this, just to get us to the 50-50 mark," said forward Thaddeus Young, who had 14 points against the Seminoles. "Now we have to get over the 50-50 mark against UNC. If we get over the 50-50 mark, then we can really do something."

In order to pull off another upset, the Yellow Jackets will have to improve their play on the road. Georgia Tech has lost 11 straight on its opponents' home courts and has not won a true road game since Jan. 10, 2006, at Centenary.

Freshman phenom Javaris Crittenton had a career-best 23 points and fifth-year senior Mario West, normally a defensive specialist, also set a career high with 18 points against Florida State.

"Over the summer, I worked very hard on my offensive game," West said. "My main thing is defense. We have a lot of guys who can score. I have to pick and choose my times to score."

Crittenton, who was named the ACC's rookie of the week on Monday, leads the Yellow Jackets with 14.2 points per game.

"I'm just reading the defense," he said. "I'm not going to play like a robot and say, 'I've got to get this many assists every game.' I'm just going to pick my spots."

Tyler Hansbrough, who had 16 points against Clemson, leads North Carolina with 18.4 points per game. He had a career-best 40 points in the Tar Heels' most recent meeting with Georgia Tech, an 82-75 victory on Feb. 15 last season.

Tar Heels sophomore guard Bobby Frasor did not play against Clemson after aggravating a sore right foot in the loss to Virginia Tech.

North Carolina leads the all-time series between these teams 57-19, but has dropped five of the last nine meetings.

by: Marc Young - - Email Us

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