The Jayhawks have grown stronger as the tournament has progressed and just walloped Villanova in the Final Four, while the Tar Heels have managed to put an average regular season behind them and go on one of the most impressive streaks for a higher seed in tournament history.
The championship bout will tip-off at 9:20 p.m. ET inside Caesars Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana.
Kansas has been running teams off the floor in the tournament with its overpowering athleticism and streaky offense. They have a little bit of everything in the attacking half, including post players, shooters, drivers, offensive rebounders, and playmakers. Their roster construction is enough to trouble any opponent, as seen with their recent performances against two elite but entirely different opponents, Miami and Villanova.
Kansas needs to get Ochai Agbaji up and running as they did in the last round because when he is on his game, everything opens up for his teammates. Remy Martin has also provided crucial scoring off the bench, which could go a long way against a UNC team that does not receive any bench scoring.
UNC Tar Heels
UNC has been the underdog in its last few matchups, excluding the Saint Peter’s game but has played with outward confidence— if you need any evidence of this, check out Caleb Love’s shooting in the final minutes against UCLA.
The Tar Heels just eliminated the Duke Blue Devils in Mike Krzyzewski’s final game of his career and will have all of the momentum in the world. Big man Armando Bacot twisted his ankle in the Final Four and could be hampered, but as long as Caleb Love has it going from the outside as he has in most of the tourney, their explosive offense will be in great hands.
North Carolina heads into the championship game as a four-point underdog to the lower-seeded Jayhawks. Kansas is also a -188 on the moneyline to UNC’s +155 at the time of publication.
The points total has been set at 152 with -110 odds on either side of the over and under.
UNC is 5-0 against the spread in the tournament, while Kansas is only 3-2 ATS.
Kansas Jayhawks at North Carolina Tar Heels Betting Prediction
This game will be a battle between two teams that are decent defensively but really look to score on offense.
Bacot will have an important job protecting the rim from the Jayhawks. Furthermore, Love and RJ Davis will need to penetrate the defense to create shots for their teammates.
Big leads won’t mean much in this game because of either team’s ability to score bunches in a hurry; this could ultimately come down to which team makes it free-throws at the end, which would favor the Tar Heels.
Prediction: North Carolina ML