The Saint Peter’s Peacocks are on a true Cinderella run. They’ve knocked off Kentucky, Murray State and Purdue on their way to the first Elite 8 appearance by a No. 15 seed in the history of the NCAA Tournament. Now, the North Carolina Tar Heels are all that stand between the Peacocks and the most unlikely Final Four team in March Madness history. On the flip side, Saint Peter’s is looking to stop an all-ACC national semifinal with Duke and Coach K waiting for the winner of this contest.
This game represents a massive contrast in styles. North Carolina has won games by outscoring its opponents, averaging 87 points per game in the NCAA Tournament, while Saint Peter’s gets the job done by suffocating its opponents on defense — the Peacocks allow opponents to shoot just 39.1 percent from the floor. We will have to see which style wins out and grabs the East Region’s spot in the Final Four.
Saint Peter’s Peacocks vs North Carolina Tar Heels Odds, Trends, and Picks
March Madness NCAA Tournament Elite 8 Betting Odds and Lines
|Saint Peter’s Peacocks
|North Carolina Tar Heels
|(21-11 SU, 22-9-1 ATS)
|(27-9 SU, 19-16-1 ATS)
When: Sunday, March 27 at 5:05 p.m.
Where: Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia, PA
Saint Peter’s Peacocks vs. North Carolina Tar Heels Spread Pick
The Peacocks and Tar Heels have both been on fire for bettors as of late, as Saint Peter’s has covered in 10 straight games while North Carolina has covered in seven of its last eight — with the lone exception being a loss to Virginia Tech in the ACC tournament.
With how well the Peacocks have played in the NCAA Tournament, giving them 8.5 points seems like a tough ask for the Tar Heels. North Carolina isn’t a deep team, as the Tar Heels only rotate six players. Saint Peter’s, on the other hand, goes eight deep and isn’t afraid to go with the hot hand at any point in the game. The Peacocks are also likely to have the crowd on their side, if the game is close, and in a situation like that, it’s almost always a good idea to back the underdog and the points.
I like Saint Peter’s to ride the wave and at least keep this one within the 8.5-point spread.
Saint Peter’s Peacocks vs. North Carolina Tar Heels Spread Pick: Saint Peter’s +8.5
Saint Peter’s Peacocks vs North Carolina Tar Heels Total Pick
Saint Peter’s has to keep North Carolina from getting off to a hot start in this one. The Tar Heels buried Marquette in the opening minutes of their first round game and ran away from Baylor in OT in the second round. The Peacocks are going to do everything they can to try to slow the tempo and force the Tar Heels into bad looks, something they’ve done brilliantly against their first three opponents during this miracle March Madness run.
If Saint Peter’s can continue to impose its will on its Elite 8 opponent, like they’ve done in their previous contests, we could see a bit of a defensive struggle on Sunday. This puts me on the under as I think the Peacocks will do just enough of that against the Tar Heels.
Saint Peter’s Peacocks vs North Carolina Tar Heels Total Pick: Under 138 points
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