North Carolina forward Day’Ron Sharpe, center, drives between Notre Dame guard Nikola Djogo (13) and forward Matt Zona during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Chapel Hill, N.C., Saturday, Jan. 2, 2021. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)
- North Carolina Tar Heels vie for a fourth straight win as they host the struggling Clemson Tigers as narrow favorites
- UNC is coming off consecutive dominant victories while the Tigers have struggled to generate offense during a 1-4 SU and ATS run
- We’ve got you covered with all the odds and trends ahead of Tuesday night’s ACC conference matchup at Littlejohn Coliseum
The North Carolina Tar Heels will be aiming to close the gap on the top of the ACC conference standings with a fourth straight win when they visit the Clemson Tigers on Tuesday night (7:00 pm ET) as 3.5-point favorites. The Tar Heels are coming off a decisive 75-65 win in Pittsburgh to move to within 1.5 game of first-place Virginia. Conversely, the Tigers have struggled in recent conference action, falling to 1-4 SU in their past five with a crushing 79-53 loss to Duke this past weekend.
Here’s a look at the odds and trends ahead of Tuesday night’s ACC conference matchup at Littlejohn Coliseum.
North Carolina Tar Heels vs Clemson Tigers Odds
|North Carolina Tar Heels||-3.5 (-102)||-162||O 134.5 (-105)|
|Clemson Tigers||+3.5 (-120)||+136||U 134.5 (-115)|
Odds as of Feb. 1st, 2021.
Tar Heels on a Roll
The Tar Heels have found their groove over the past month after struggling throughout the month of December. SU losers in four of their final six outings in 2020, the club rebounded with the start of the new year, claiming outright victory in five of six January contests. UNC has also started to turn things around at the sportsbooks. The Tar Heels have marched to victory by double-digit margins in each of their past two games, capped by a lopsided 75-65 win in Pittsburgh a week ago.. With those wins, the team put the brakes on a dismal 2-9-1 ATS run over 11 games since opening the season with a pair of lopsided victories over Charleston and UNLV.
.@UNC_Basketball earns a big road win over Pitt, 75-65! 🐏
Highlights brought to you by @GEICO #ACCMBB pic.twitter.com/GD8wluoSX8
— ACC Digital Network (@theACCDN) January 27, 2021
However, the Tar Heels still have work to do to overcome their shaky betting record on the road. UNC has claimed victory in just two of their past five road contests while favored, and sport a dismal 2-5 ATS record in their past seven as road chalk. That trend also extends to recent road dates while pegged as road chalk by three or fewer points, with the Tar Heels going 4-4 SU and ATS in their past eight.
The Tar Heels are officially in the groove. Three in a row and a good chance to extend it to four next Tuesday against a struggling Clemson team. It definitely feels good to watch this team playing well again.
— Anthony Pagnotta (@HTBAnthony) January 27, 2021
Once dominant in head-to-head meetings with Clemson, the tables have turned on the Tar Heels over the past three years. After enjoying an epic 18-1 SU run against the Tigers, UNC has now lost two of three to Clemson. The club also failed to cover in all three of those outings, all while favored by 3.5 or fewer points.
2021 NCAA Men’s Tournament Championship Odds Tracker
Tigers Struggling Since COVID-19 Shutdown
While the Tar Heels aim to maintain their recent momentum, the Tigers return to action looking to recapture their early-season form. Clemson opened the season on an impressive 9-1 SU run that featured a decisive 64-56 win over Alabama, and a 3-1 SU record against conference rivals. However, the Tigers have struggled since seeing their originally scheduled January 9 date with UNC postponed due to a COVID-19 outbreak. While the outbreak was limited to just one positive test, the team was forced to endure a 10-day layoff, from which it has not yet recovered.
Three players finish with 20+ and @GTMBB beats No. 20 Clemson, 83-65! 🐝
Highlights brought to you by @GEICO#ACCMBB pic.twitter.com/qYZG5WLXqU
— ACC Digital Network (@theACCDN) January 21, 2021
Perched at No. 12 in the AP Top 25 standings following their 9-1 SU start, the Tigers have tumbled out of the rankings during their current 1-4 SU and ATS run, all against conference opponents. Clemson’s swoon has featured one outright loss while favored, a crushing 83-65 defeat at the hands of Georgia Tech while pegged as 2-point chalk. And while the Tigers looked to be back after last week’s 54-50 win over No. 25 Louisville as 1.5-point home favorites, they were simply outclassed in a 79-53 loss to Duke this past weekend as 5-point underdogs.
Clemson Searching for Offensive Touch
Finding the target has emerged as a massive problem for Clemson during their current slide. The Tigers went a worrisome 20-for-57 from the floor in their loss to the Blue Devils, hitting just 23.8% of 3-point attempts, and have converted fewer than 36% of field goal attempts in three of their past five games. And with each of their past four losses coming by double-digit margins, the team has now covered just twice in their past 10 contests, and has seen the OVER prevail in six of their past eight.
Clemson falls at Duke, 79-53.
Aamir Simms is the only Tigers to score in double figures as he finishes with a game high 19 points.
With the loss, Clemson falls to 10-5 overall & 4-5 in the ACC.@WSPA7
— Todd Summers (@ToddSummers7) January 30, 2021
The one bright spot for the Tigers has been the play of Aamir Simms. The senior big man is the only Tigers player averaging double digits this season, with a team-leading 12.5 points per game. And his 19-point performance against the Blue Devils was the only reason their loss to Duke was not far more lopsided.
The Picks: Tar Heels -3.5 (-102)
Daniel has been writing about sports and sports betting for over 23 years. The seasoned pro has contributed to the likes of Sports Illustrated, Sportsnet, NESN, Bleacher Report, OddsShark, the Globe and Mail, and The Nation magazine.