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2017 NCAA College Basketball National Championship Betting Pick: North Carolina Tar Heels vs. Gonzaga Bulldogs

North Carolina Tar Heels vs. Gonzaga Bulldogs

College Basketball Matchup at a Glance

  • Where: University of Phoenix Stadium, Phoenix, Arizona
  • Date & Time: Monday, April 3, 2017
  • Point Spread: NC-2
  • Total: O/U 153.5
  • Quick Pick: Over 153.5

The finals are set in the NCAA Tournament and the North Carolina Tar Heels are all set to take on the Gonzaga Bulldogs.  These two are not complete strangers to each other as they played each other back in 2009 and 2006.  They split the series, both winning one game SU and ATS.  

Bulldogs In First-Ever National Title Game

Gonzaga Bulldogs defeated a tough South Carolina team on Saturday in the first game of the final four.  Gonzaga was up by 9 at halftime but the Gamecocks refused to go away going on a 16-0 run midway through the second half.  Nigel Williams-Goss led the Bulldogs scoring a game-high 23 points.  The Bulldogs big man, Przemek Karnowski, was injured in the first half taking a nasty shot to the right eye, which sidelined him for the remainder of the first half.  During halftime, Karnowski was seen by an eye doctor and cleared to return to the game.  Karnowski and freshman Zach Collins combined for 18 rebounds.

Gonzaga is now 37-1 SU and 23-10-2 ATS.  They won the West Coast Conference regular season with a 17-1 conference record. They also went on to win the West Coast Conference Tournament.  They are now playing for their first ever National Championship in men’s basketball.  The Bulldogs are now 12-0 on the year at neutral sites.

Tar Heels In Finals After Huge Game From Meeks

The North Carolina Tar Heels are headed back to the NCAA Finals after a very close ending to the game against Oregon Ducks on Saturday night.  The Tar Heels missed 5 straight free throws in the game but grabbed the offensive rebounds each time preventing the Ducks from capitalising and having a chance at a game-winning last second shot.  Kennedy Meeks had a huge night scoring 25 points and 14 rebounds.

The Tar Heels are now 32-7 SU and 19-16-3 ATS.  Over their last 10 games, the Tar Heels are 8-2 SU and 4-4-2 ATS.  They have the 9th ranked offense in the country, averaging 85 points per game.  

Big Men Make The Difference

Gonzaga has been one of the best teams in the nation for the better half of the season.  They have 2 big men that afford them the opportunity to either play low post ball using Karnowski and Collins, or they can kick it outside the shoot from beyond the arch with the big men grabbing the rebounds. Against the Tar Heels, this should play out well as they have been exposed on defense and it is proven that teams can score on them.  I look for Gonzaga to cover the spread, but I also look for them to win the game outright.

Pick: Gonzaga Bulldogs +2