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UCONN Seeks Revenge Over Tar Heels - First Half Bet Looks Good

9/12/09

Last season UCONN suffered one of it's worst losses of the year at the hands of the North Carolina Tar Heels, 38-12. But the final score was a bit deceptive. The UCONN football team, coached by Randy Edsall has been known as a team that has made the most of it's strengths. Not a team of all stars, but a well coached team that made very few mistakes and made the most of it's own opportunities.

That all came undone in Chapel Hill last year. UCONN had 3 blocked punts and an interception that was returned for a TD. North Carolina scored 21 points off of UCONN mistakes. UCONN outgained the Tar Heels 169-107 in the first half and 378-263 for the game. It was one of those games that just got away. Everything went wrong. It was a very un-uconn like game.

Now, having said all that, both teams finished with 8-5 records a year ago but it was North Carolina that had the more impressive 8 wins. The Tar Heels beat Boston College, Miami, Georgia Tech, Notre Dame and blew Rutgers off the field 45-12. UCONN on the other hand came up short against every quality opponent they had and for that matter, their games against quality opponents weren't even close.

After last years fiasco you can be sure of one thing this week. UCONN will play UCONN football. They'll protect the ball, they won't make stupid mistakes and won't let turnovers cost them the game. The game will have the signature of a Randy Edsall coached team. UCONN has no chance unless they play perfect football. Last week in Ohio UCONN turned the ball over 4 times. Between last weeks performance and Last years NC game we'd be shocked if UCONN played sloppy ball this week.

But even a perfect game might not be enough. We mentioned that last year, North Carolina was without a doubt the better team, with more quality wins. Just about all of those players from a year ago are back for the Tar Heels while UCONN took some hits, including losing star running back Donald Brown to the NFL. This game will tell us quite a bit about both of these teams. We can't tell much about either team based on last weeks games against lesser opponents.

UCONN has been one of the better bets this decade as a home underdog going 12-6 against the spread in that roll. Heck, they have been one of the better home teams in general going 54-40 against the number. But the Tar Heels performances against teams like Georgia Tech, Va Tech, Miami and Boston College suggest to us that they are the better team here and will likely end up on top Saturday afternoon.

Expect UCONN to be in the game from start to finish. Expect the game to be up for grabs when the 4th quarter starts. But we feel the 4th quarter is where the Tar Heels put some distance between themselves and the Huskies with a final margin of somewhere between 7 and 11 points.

A play on UCONN in the first half only, might be worth making. They'll be pumped as heck, playing their first home game with a revenge motive to boot. The adrenaline alone should keep the first half close. UCONN in front at the half shouldn't surprise anyone. So two plays for us here. UCONN +2 or +2.5 for the first half and North Carolina -4.5 for the game.

 

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