|March Madness Final Four Betting Preview: Villanova vs. North Carolina|
|Written by Anthony Rome|
|Saturday, 04 April 2009 10:30|
Bet Guide: 'Nova/UNC
North Carolina will make its NCAA-record 18th trip to the Final Four when they face Villanova on Saturday night at Ford Field in Detroit.
The Tar Heels are in the Final Four for the second year in a row and the third time in the last five years. The Tar Heels will be trying to get the bad taste of last year’s Final Four out of their mouth when they fell behind Kansas 40-12 in the first half. North Carolina never recovered from that bad start and Kansas went on to win the game and the National Championship. This year’s Tar Heels have been on a mission ever since that loss.
North Carolina has a powerful lineup led by point guard Ty Lawson and last year’s player of the year Tyler Hansbrough. The Tar Heels also have Wayne Ellington and Danny Green who can take over a game at anytime.
While North Carolina has the star power, Villanova is not without talent. Guard Scottie Reynolds and forward Dante Cunningham are a potent one-two punch and the Wildcats play a high-pressure defense that could give North Carolina trouble. Cunningham leads the team with 16.2 points and 7.8 rebounds a game while Reynolds is next with 15.2 points and almost 4 assists per game.
Villanova may be an underdog to North Carolina but they don’t feel like one. "You hear the people on TV say that and you just can't listen to it," Cunningham said. "I don't feel like we're underdogs. At this point, you just have to look at it like, everyone's on the same plane. We've worked just as hard as they have to get here."
North Carolina is 12-2 in NCAA Tournament action in the last three seasons but lost in the Elite Eight and in the Final Four the last two years. The Tar Heels are 19-4 in the NCAA Tournament under head coach Roy Williams.
Here are the College Basketball betting stats for Saturday’s game. The Wildcats are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 NCAA Tournament games as an underdog. The Wildcats are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 vs. the ACC.
The Tar Heels are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 NCAA Tournament games. The Tar Heels are 38-15 ATS in their last 53 non-conference games.
The Under is 9-2 in the Wildcats last 11 non-conference games. The Under is 4-1-1 in the Wildcats last 6 vs. the ACC.
The Over is 5-0 in the Tar Heels last 5 vs. the Big East. The Under is 4-1 in the Tar Heels last 5 NCAA Tournament games.
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Posted: 4/4/09 3:30PM ET