North Carolina vs Virginia ACC Tournament Picks and Predictions: Cavaliers Cut Down Tar Heels

With March Madness around the corner both the Cavaliers and Tar Heels are locked into playoff mode. We're backing the Cavs to cover the college basketball spread in this one. Find out why in our picks and predictions for Virginia vs. North Carolina.

Last Updated: Mar 10, 2022 2:40 PM ET Read Time: 5 min
Kihei Clark Virginia Cavaliers ACC Tournament
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

The Virginia Cavaliers had more trouble with the Louisville Cardinals than they should have last night but were able to live to fight another day. Now, Tony Bennett’s team takes on the North Carolina Tar Heels, who are fresh off of a road win over the Duke Blue Devils in Mike Krzyzewski’s last home game. 

Will the Cavaliers turn things around after last night and find a way to cover the college basketball betting spread against the Tar Heels? Find out in our free college basketball picks and predictions for Virginia vs. North Carolina.

North Carolina vs Virginia odds

This odds widget represents the best odds available for each betting market from regulated sportsbooks.

Virginia was a 4-point underdog when this line first became available, but the line is now moving to 4.5 in most places. And the total which opened at 134 — is all the way down to as low as 130 in some places — but there is one book hanging the number out there at 133.5. 

Use the live odds widget above to track any future line movements right up until tip-off and be sure to check out the full college basketball odds before placing your bets.

North Carolina vs Virginia/Louisville predictions

Predictions made on 3/10/2022 at 10:53 a.m. ET.
Click on each prediction to jump to the full analysis.

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North Carolina vs Virginia/Louisville game info

Location: Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
Date: Thursday, March 10, 2022
Tip-off: 9:30 p.m. ET

North Carolina at Virginia/Louisville betting preview


North Carolina: Dawson Garcia F (Out), Anthony Harris G (Out).
Virginia: No injuries to report.

Find our latest NCAA basketball injury reports.

Betting trend to know

Virginia is 8-0 ATS in their last eight games when coming off an ATS loss.  Find more NCAA betting trends for North Carolina vs. Virginia.

North Carolina vs Virginia picks and predictions

Our side and total predictions are based upon our analysis of the line and total in this game. Our best bet is our favorite pick across all markets.

Spread analysis

Not only are the Cavaliers 8-0 against the spread in the last eight games in which they’re coming off a no-cover, they’re also 4-0 ATS in their last four games against teams with winning records.

On top of that, the Tar Heels are 0-4-1 ATS in their last five neutral-court games and just 1-4 ATS in their last five games in which they’re coming off a performance where they scored 90 or more points. To add icing on the cake, Virginia is 7-1 ATS in the last eight games in this head-to-head series. 

The Cavaliers might not have played very well against the Cardinals last night, but a win is a win. Virginia lives another day and now has to be feeling like it can upset North Carolina tonight. Bennett had his defense looking elite once again, which is somewhat surprising after a year in which the team wasn’t as good as usual on that end.

The Cavs also have Kihei Clark running the point, and that means they’ll always have a chance to win. Clark is a smaller player and doesn’t have elite athleticism, but he's one of the smartest players in the country. He always gets players the ball in their sweet spot and is capable of hitting big shots himself. 

It’s also big the Cavaliers will be able to stick Reece Beekman on Caleb Love in this game. Beekman is one of the best defenders in the nation and can take out his opponent on a nightly basis. If he can contain Love, the Tar Heels are going to be in trouble in this one. 

As long as Virginia is able to prevent Armando Bacot from dominating around the basket, it should cover rather easily. Realistically, it has a better chance than not of winning this game outright. 

Prediction: Virginia +4.5 (-110)

Over/Under analysis

The Under is 3-0 in neutral-court games that North Carolina has played in this year, and it’s also 10-5 when the team has played in games with a total between 130 and 139.5 over the last three seasons. When games are expected to be low-scoring, the Tar Heels generally don’t do much to change that.

The Under also happens to be 7-4 when North Carolina is coming off of a road win over a conference rival, which is exactly what UNC got when it beat the Blue Devils in Durham. 

The Under is also 4-1 in the last five meetings between Virginia and North Carolina, and that includes a game in which these teams met back on January 8. That was in Chapel Hill, where the home crowd definitely helped the Tar Heels shoot 47.5% from the floor and 44.0% from three.

They’re not likely to do that again in this spot, as the Cavaliers are going to ratchet up their defense and it won’t be quite as easy for them to shoot in a bigger arena — especially with this being the team’s first game of the tournament. 

We just saw UVA play a game in which 101 total points were scored. Ultimately, it’s just impossible to shake that and it’s not even out of the ordinary for what Bennett asks of his team. 

Prediction: Under 133.5 (-112)

Best bet

With this total being 130 or 130.5 on nearly every site, you’re just not going to get a better value on this one than going with the Under 133.5 at BetRivers. There’s no such thing as a mortal lock in sports betting, but this line is just too hard to pass up.

Even if this isn’t the same Pack Line defense that we’re used to seeing from Virginia, we were treated to something of a throwback performance from this team last night. 

The Under is also 3-0 in the neutral-court games that the Cavs have played this season, and they're 7-2 when you stretch that out over the last three years. They know that they can’t get out and run with this Tar Heels team, so look for them to try to make this a sloppy game.

If they’re in it late, they know that Clark can lead them to a win. This team is going to throw the kitchen sink at UNC to keep it as messy as they can.

Pick: Under 133.5 (-112)

College basketball parlays

Did you know that if you parlayed our North Carolina vs. Virginia/Louisville picks, you could win $10.10 on a $10 bet?

Use our college basketball parlay calculator to create your own parlays and see their potential payouts.

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