The 8th-seeded NC State Wolfpack are 2-point underdogs against the 4th-seeded Louisville Cardinals in their Sweet Sixteen tilt this Friday. The Wolfpack are 13-4-2 ATS in their last 19 games as the betting underdog and 3-1 SU in their last four games as an underdog.
For the fourth straight year, Louisville has advanced to the Sweet 16. The Cardinals are 6-1 SU and 5-2 ATS in their last seven trips to the Sweet 16, with the one loss since 1997 coming against eventual champion Kentucky last year.
A Closer Look At The NC State Wolfpack vs Louisville Cardinals Odds & Final Score Prediction
Matchup: (8) NC State Wolfpack vs (4) Louisville Cardinals
Date: Mar. 27, 2015
Start Time: 9:45 p.m. ET
Location: Syracuse, New York
Stadium: Carrier Dome
TV Info: TBS
Stream: March Madness Live
Radio: NC State Vs Louisville
Point Spread: Cardinals -2
Game Total: 130
NC State Will Cover the 2-point Spread If
The Wolfpack can control the paint.
NC State’s success in the NCAA Tournament can be traced back to their starting guards, Trevor Lacey and Anthony Barber. Barber scored 17 points and grabbed 5 boards versus LSU in the Wolfpack’s 66 to 65 win. Lacey scored 17 points, grabbed 6 boards and dished 4 assists in NC State’s 71 to 68 upset win over Villanova.
The reason that Lacey and Barber have been the key is because when they play well, it allows NC State’s big men to control the paint. NC State out boarded Villanova 39 to 29 in the upset win. Lennard Freeman and Abdul-Malik Abu both grabbed 12 boards. It’s impossible to beat NC State when they’re grabbing rebounds and controlling the inside. If opponents adjust, they end up leaving Lacey or Barber open for shots. Both guards can score from pretty much anywhere on the court.
NC State Wolfpack Sweet 16 Projected Starting Lineup
- G Trevor Lacey, 6-3, Jr., 15.8 ppg, 4.4 rpg
- G Ralston Turner, 6-5, Sr., 13.2 ppg, 3.3 rpg
- G Anthony Barber, 6-2, So., 12.1 ppg, 3.8 apg
- F Kyle Washington, 6-9, So., 6.7 ppg, 4.3 rpg
- F Lennard Freeman, 6-8, So., 3.4 ppg, 5.6 rpg
- Coach: Mark Gottfried (fourth season)
Louisville Will Cover the 2-point Spread If
Louisville’s offense is able to break down NC State’s defense
Louisville’s victory over Northern Iowa was a surprise to many basketball handicappers. The Cardinals were +2.5 point dogs in their second round battle versus the Panthers. All Louisville did was beat UNI 66 to 53. A closer look reveals something that could hurt the Cardinals in their battle versus NC State on Friday, though.
Louisville’s Terry Rozier scored 25 of Louisville’s 66 points. Montrezl Harrell, Louisville’s best inside player, scored 14 of the 66 points. That’s almost 60% of the Cardinals’ points coming from 2 players. Using a two player strategy like that won’t work versus NC State because the Wolfpack is too good defensively. NC State held Villanova to under 32% shooting from the field. If Louisville wishes to cover the spread in this matchup, they’re going to have to break down NC State’s defense and get more balanced scoring. The Wolfpack will have a plan to stop both Harrell and Rozier. If nobody else steps it up, it could be a long night for the Cardinals.
Louisville Projected Sweet 16 Projected Starting Lineup
- G Terry Rozier, 6-1, So., 17.0 ppg, 5.4 rpg
- G Quentin Snider 6-2, Fr., 3.2 ppg, 1.3 rpg
- F Montrezl Harrell, 6-8, Jr., 15.8 ppg, 9.4 rpg
- F Wayne Blackshear, 6-5, Sr., 10.7 ppg, 4.3 rpg
- C Chinanu Onuaku, 6-10 Fr., 3.4 ppg, 4.9 rpg
- Coach: Rick Pitino (14th season)