By Jordan Horrobin | | 3 mins
Michigan vs North Carolina Odds, Picks & Predictions
Two of the biggest brands in college basketball meet on Wednesday night, as the No. 25 Michigan Wolverines travel to take on the North Carolina Tar Heels (9:15 p.m. ET tipoff).
Wednesday marks the fourth time in five years that Michigan and UNC have met in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge, with the Wolverines winning the two most recent iterations (2019, 2018). This time, Michigan is a very slight favorite at betting apps.
Odds are current as of publication. betting sites may indicate odds changes closer to kickoff.
5 Keys to Michigan vs UNC
High turnover rate: The winner of this game might just be the team that makes fewer mistakes. So far, Michigan has been on the wrong end of the turnover battle in five of six games, while UNC has committed more turnovers in all six of its games. Last time out, Michigan committed 21 turnovers while forcing just six against Tarleton State.
Disparity from deep: The sample size is small, but UNC’s greatest strength to this point is its perimeter shooting. The Tar Heels are shooting 41.4% from 3-pt. range, which is 13th in the country. Michigan is shooting just 29.1% (282nd in NCAA).
Good losses, bad wins: Against fellow teams ranked inside KenPom’s top 50, Michigan and UNC are 0-4. In fact, all of UNC’s wins have come against teams ranked outside KenPom’s top 200. Michigan’s best win came against Buffalo, which is No. 82 according to KenPom.
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Defensive disaster: In four consecutive games from Nov. 12-21, UNC allowed its opponents to score 80 or more points. The Tar Heels haven’t had a stretch like that in 18 years. On the bright side, they allowed just 53 points to UNC Asheville in their most recent game.
Fast or slow: We can use KenPom’s adjusted tempo metrics to gauge how quickly or slowly teams tend to play, and Michigan and UNC are markedly different in that regard. Michigan’s tempo of 67.5 possessions per 40 minutes is 255th in the NCAA, while UNC’s 71.8 possessions per 40 minutes ranks 47th.
Michigan vs North Carolina Pick
To this point in the season, Michigan has an elite offense inside the arc, while UNC has been one of the best in the nation from beyond the arc. Both teams need to protect the ball better, but it’s more forgivable in UNC’s higher pace of play. Then again, Michigan has been tested by a tougher schedule through six games.
We think UNC has the makings of an upset, given that they’re at home and can separate themselves with outside shooting. The Tar Heels have failed to cover all six spreads that top sportsbooks have thrown at them, but we like their chances for a straight up win this time. Bet on it at BetMGM and use the BetMGM Bonus Code to your advantage.
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