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NCAA Tournament Handicapping: University of Phoenix Stadium could be tough on shooters

03.29.2017     09:42 AM     Printer Friendly blog entry.
We blogged earlier this week about the unique court layout of University of Phoenix Stadium where this weekend's Final Four will be held. Generally, 3-point shooting is a good indicator of whether or not a venue is "shooter friendly." Back in 2009, the venue hosted three NCAA Tournament games and the results from deep weren't pretty. Teams were a combined 25-for-92, 27%. The good news is three of the four remaining teams don't rely heavily on the 3-point shot.

2009 NCAA Tournament Region 3-point shooting
Missouri-Memphis: 9-for-31
Missouri-UConn: 7-for-30
Purdue-UConn: 9-for-31
Total: 25-for-92, 27%

Percentage of points from 3 (national rank)
North Carolina 25.3% (293rd)
Gonzaga 26.2% (275th)
South Carolina 27.2% (255th)
Oregon 32.9% (105th)

Tags: College Basketball

NCAA Tournament Handicapping: North Carolina Tar Heels favored to win title

03.27.2017     09:07 AM     Printer Friendly blog entry.
And then there were four. This weekend's Final Four matchups are set with South Carolina taking on Gonzaga and Oregon squaring off against North Carolina. The Tar Heels are +150 to win the title followed by Gonzaga (+170), Oregon (+475) and South Carolina (+875).

The remaining three games will take place at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz. It's obviously a massive structure that will be modified to accommodate the small playing field compared to football. There hasn't been a lot of high profile basketball played at the venue. The only one we came across was the 2009 NCAA Tournament Regional. Here's a bunch of photos that show the layout.


Tags: College Basketball North Carolina Tar Heels South Carolina Gamecocks Gonzaga Bulldogs Oregon Duck

NCAA Tournament Gambling Update: Sweet Sixteen field is set, UNC new tourney favorite

03.20.2017     07:30 AM     Printer Friendly blog entry.
The NCAA Tournament's Sweet Sixteen field is set with games later this week on Thursday and Friday. According to William Hill, North Carolina is your new tournament favorite at 4/1. Below are the adjusted odds for all 16 teams.

North Carolina 4/1
Kansas 9/2
Arizona 9/2
UCLA 13/2
Gonzaga 7/1
Kentucky 8/1
Florida 15/1
Oregon 15/1
Michigan 15/1
Baylor 18/1
West Virginia 18/1
Purdue 20/1
Wisconsin 20/1
Butler 30/1
Xavier 75/1
South Carolina 75/1

Tags: College Basketball North Carolina Tar Heels

College Basketball Betting: Whoever wins this year's title is likely to be elite on the defensive end

03.02.2017     09:49 AM     Printer Friendly blog entry.
They say that defense wins championships and nowhere is this more true than college basketball. Below is a list of the last 15 National Champions and their defensive efficiency and rank. You'll notice a common theme; all but one of them finished in the top 20. The lone exception was North Carolina who finished 21st and it should be noted the Tar Heels boasted the nation's top offensive efficiency. One of the reasons we pointed this out is that UCLA is among those currently favored to cut down the nets. Most sportsbooks have the Bruins lumped in with Gonzaga, Villanova, North Carolina and Kansas as the "first tier." What stands out is UCLA isn't in the top 20 in defensive efficiency. They aren't even in the top 50. To their credit, the Bruins have improved on the defensive end but with a week to go in the regular season, they currently rank 90th at 1.00 points per possession allowed. No champion during that 15-year span has allowed over 0.90 ppp; though that could change this year as only four teams (Virginia, South Carolina, Gonzaga and Florida) are holding teams to less than 0.90 ppp.

Year - Champion (Defensive Efficiency Read more

Tags: College Basketball

College Basketball Betting: Virginia a rare home underdog to North Carolina

02.27.2017     09:35 AM     Printer Friendly blog entry.
It's been a long time since Virginia was a home underdog like it is tonight against North Carolina. The Cavaliers were last catching points on their home court back in 2012 when the Tar Heels were laying -3.5 and won 54-51. But it looks as if the betting markets are starting to sour on this squad after losing four of five including a 65-41 blowout loss at UNC back on Feb. 18. The normally efficient Cavs have really struggled to score of late; 0.92 points per possession over their last five games. UNC opened -1.5 but has since been bet up to -3.5.

Tags: College Basketball Virginia Cavaliers North Carolina Tar Heels ACC

College Basketball Gambling: NC State situation somehow turning even more toxic

02.15.2017     09:09 AM     Printer Friendly blog entry.
Currently residing on the front page of is an article titled, "Sources: Mark Gottfried likely out at NC State, barring late surge." Awkward timing considering the Wolf Pack have a game tonight against rival North Carolina. Gottfried's days are without a doubt numbered as his team enters tonight of a five-game losing streak (0-5 ATS). And it's never a good thing when an unnamed coach within your league calls your team out for not playing hard. Despite having a sure-fire first round draft pick in Dennis Smith, NC State has suffered conference losses of 18, 51 (!!!), 25, 24, and 30.

"They have more than enough talent to get to the NCAA tourney," one ACC coach told ESPN. "They just don't play hard at all."

Tags: College Basketball NC State Wolf Pack North Carolina Tar Heels ACC

College Basketball Betting Free Play: North Carolina Tar Heels at Indiana Hoosiers

11.30.2016     07:06 AM     Otto Sports     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Otto Sports blog entry.
North Carolina at Indiana +4 O/U 163
Recommendation: Indiana

With James Blackmon upgraded to probable and NCAA Tournament revenge in effect, I'll take a look at supporting Indiana as a home underdog against North Carolina this evening. The Hoosiers aren't without deficiencies, most notably on the defensive end. A big key to tonight's game is how Indiana handles UNC on the interior. If Thomas Bryant gets into foul trouble, it really puts pressure on the Hoosiers' offense to perform at an ultra-high level. North Carolina looked impressive in its run to the Maui Invitational title. They however had a rather easy path by drawing Chaminade in the first round, and undersized Oklahoma State team in the semifinals and offensively challenged Wisconsin in the title game. Loaded with athletes and depth (no player is currently averaging more than 30 minutes per game) it was the perfect set up and they obviously took advantage. Now, UNC must go on the road to face a top-tier offense at a very tough venue. Last season, in their only two non-conference road games, North Carolina lost outright to Northern Iowa and Texas. In last year's tournament, the Tar Heels Read more

Tags: College Basketball North Carolina Tar Heels Indiana Hoosiers OTTO Sports

College Football Betting Preview: Pittsburgh Panthers at North Carolina Tar Heels

09.21.2016     09:40 AM     Rob Veno     Printer Friendly
Submitted by Rob Veno blog entry.
Pittsburgh at North Carolina
Saturday, 12:30 pm PT - ESPNU
CRIS Opener:
North Carolina -8 O/U 70
CRIS Current: North Carolina -7 O/U 67.5
Recommendation: Over

I have successfully faded Pittsburgh with a free play the past two weeks and will pick on them once again at the Panthers travel to Chapel Hill. I detected a defensive weakness against the pass in their 42-39 victory over Penn State and discussed it in last week’s write-up selection vs. Oklahoma State. Money flocked toward Pitt but OSU set a multitude of offensive records against them last Saturday including Mason Rudolph’s 540 passing yards. In their last two games, Pittsburgh has given up 872 yards through the air on 50 completions for an average of 17.4. That number is alarming enough but when you add in the fact that Penn State rang up huge numbers in catch up mode with an average passer Trace McSorely, the concern becomes larger. Then take into account that pass reliant Oklahoma State threw for 540 yards with a ground game that is more of a below average diversion than true threat and you clearly see a problem.

This Read more

Tags: College Football Pittsburgh Panthers North Carolina Tar Heels ACC Rob Veno

College Football Handicapping: Updating Georgia's injury situation

07.27.2016     08:03 AM     Printer Friendly blog entry.
A few links in connection with yesterday's Sportsmemo Podcast as host Andrew Lange and Drew Martin discussed the Georgia Bulldogs. Running back Nick Chubb (8.12 ypc) who missed the back half of last season with a knee injury is inching back towards full strength. He, as well as Sony Michel (1,161 yards, 5.3 ypc), though remain questionable for Week 1's game vs. North Carolina. And earlier this month, first-year head coach Kirby Smart named quarterback Greyson Lambert the team's starter. Georgia is currently a -3 favorite vs. the Tar Heels.

“He’s back to his normal self when it comes to running, cutting, exercising, but he hasn’t put the pads on,” he said. “He hasn’t taken a hit. He hasn’t taken that knee brace off yet. So there’s a lot of hurdles when it comes to that for

Read more

Tags: College Football Georgia Bulldogs SEC

College Football Betting Preview Podcast 7-1-2016: North Carolina Tar Heels

07.01.2016     08:36 AM     Printer Friendly blog entry.
Covering sports from a Vegas perspective for over 20 years, the Sportsmemo Podcast kicks off its 2016-17 preseason football coverage. Join us throughout the summer as the Sportsmemo Handicappers provide listeners with in-depth analysis on NFL and College Football.

Today's segment featured veteran handicapper Rob Veno. Rob broke down the North Carolina Tar Heels who open the season as +3 underdogs to Georgia in Atlanta.


Date: 7/1
Handicapper: Rob Veno
Team: North Carolina Tar Heels
2015 Record: 11-3 SU, 8-6 ATS, 8-6 O/U
Season O/U Wins: 9ov-125
Odds to Win Title: +12500
Odds to Win ACC Coastal: +400
Odds to Win ACC: +1500
Week 1 Line: North Carolina +3 vs. Georgia (Atlanta)

To listen to past football previews be sure to visit the Sportsmemo Podcast archive.

Tags: College Football North Carolina Tar Heels ACC Rob Veno


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