15* Ohio/UNC Sweet 16 No-Brainer on Ohio +10.5
Ohio vs. North Carolina,
03/23/2012 19:47 EDT,
Score: 65 - 73
Point Spread: +10½/-108 Ohio
The Ohio Bobcats have been the biggest surprise in the tournament thus far. It shouldn't come as too big of a surprise though considering how well this team played early in the year. Ohio opened 12-1 with their only loss coming at then-No. 7 Louisville by a final of 54-59. While they are a No. 13 seed, this team is playing more like one of the top seeds in the tournament.
Ohio features two stud guards in D.J. Cooper (14.9 points, 5.7 assists, 2.3 steals) and Walter Offutt (12.0 points, 1.6 steals) who can carry this team. Cooper has scored 40 points and Offutt has put up 32 in two NCAA Tournament games. The Bobcats will actually have the advantage at the guard positions in this game due to the health of UNC point guard Kendall Marshall.
Marshall, the nation's leading assist man, suffered a fractured wrist in UNC's victory over Creighton last round. While it's possible he may play, it is very unlikely. Even if he does go, Marshall will not be at 100% and will likely be hurting his team by being out there.
Freshman Stilman White (4.3 minutes per game) and senior Justin Watts (only two stints at point guard this season) would be first in line to replace Marshall as UNC’s primary ball handlers. As you can see, Marshall is probably the most important player on this team because of their lack of depth at the PG position.
The Bobcats are 9-0 ATS in their last 9 non-conference games. Ohio is 20-6-1 ATS in their last 27 games as an underdog. The Bobcats are 15-6 ATS in their last 21 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600. The Tar Heels are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 vs. MAC opponents. Take Ohio Friday.