It is a bittersweet knowing that we have finally arrived to the National Championship. Sweet because we have a great game on our hands, but bitter because it means that the season has come to end. Depending on where your allegiances lie, Duke being out of it has left people either incredibly happy, or incredibly sad.
Instead, we have Kansas vs North Carolina for the championship- aka the Roy Williams Bowl.
Kansas is currently 4 point favorites over UNC, with the over/under set at 152.
Kansas might be the lowest profile 1 seed to ever get all the way to the title. Because none of their games were particularly close, and there were so many other huge storylines going on with the tournament, Kansas has had an under the radar run to the championship game.
Part of the reasoning for that was because they were never truly tested, both in terms of the quality of their opponents or having a game that was that close – until they were already in the Final 4. The second half against Miami felt like a wake up call to the 3 remaining teams to not take them lightly.
As the 1 seed in their region, Kansas definitely has the talent worthy of that seed. Led by senior stud Ochai Ogbaji, this Kansas team is deep and talented. Other than Ogbaji they have guard Remy Martin who has come along recently, as well as big man David McCormick. Ogbaji was great in the Final 4 game against Villanova, but Villanova also had no answers for McCormick.
Those two, coupled with a hot shooting Kansas team, was too much for ‘Nova to handle. The game was never really that close, with the closest score getting to 6 points. But, Kansas would immediately go on a run and the game was never really in doubt. Villanova just couldn’t keep up without Justin Moore.
On the North Carolina side, they have been nothing but tested in their tournament run. Not to mention that they just won the most epic college basketball game in history against Coach K and Duke in the Final 4. The Tarheels came up with impressive shot after impressive shot, and eventually pulled away late thanks to a dagger 3 from Caleb Love with less than 30 seconds remaining to go up 4.
The largest lead of the game was Duke by 7 at the beginning of the second half, but Carolina immediately responded with an 11-0 run to weather the storm. There were a couple of times where it felt like Duke might run away with it, but credit to this Carolina team that would not let that happen.
Brady Manek or Caleb Love would always respond with a huge shot, or Armando Bacot would get an offensive rebound and put back to keep UNC in the game.
Looking at the odds and spread for this game, it is no surprise that Kansas is the favorite, but I do think that UNC isn’t getting enough love. There is the notion that Carolina might have a let down game after such an emotional victory in Coach K’s final game ever coaching college basketball, but that is not something that I foresee.
The same argument could have been made after North Carolina beat Duke in Coach K’s final home game, or after UNC survived a 25 point blown lead to beat the defending national champs Baylor in overtime. And I haven’t even mentioned that they beat Final 4 contestant and legit championship contender in UCLA in the Sweet 16!
If this Carolina team was going to have a let down game, it would have already happened. So, while I love the value of getting them to cover the spread, I even more love the value of getting their moneyline at +170 on WynnBET.
Carolina has passed every test thrown their way since that game in Cameron Indoors, and I think they complete the dream run in the National Championship game.
Kansas vs North Carolina Pick:
My official best bet for this Kansas and North Carolina National Championship game is to take North Carolina moneyline. I bet this at +170 odds on WynnBET Sportsbook.
Kansas vs North Carolina Prediction:
My prediction for this game is that North Carolina will win 83-80.