North Carolina vs. Virginia Tech: Cole Anthony is the difference

North Carolina vs. Virginia Tech: Cole Anthony is the difference

This has been a disappointing season for North Carolina, but the Tar Heels’ stars are playing their best basketball of the season and the team still can go dancing if it wins the ACC Tournament.

The Tar Heels’ first must-win game to make the field of 68 comes Tuesday in Greensboro, N.C., against Virginia Tech, a team they lost to, 79-77, in double overtime while guard Cole Anthony was sidelined due to injury. The Hokies went 14 of 37 from 3-point range and North Carolina had just one steal in the game.

At the time, Virginia Tech led the country in fewest turnovers per game, but the Hokies have not been as efficient recently, turning the ball over an average of 13.7 times per game in their last three games compared to their season average of 10.

Much like the first meeting, though, Garrison Brooks is controlling things in the paint. He had 28 points and 13 rebounds in that game against the Tar Heels, and has posted at least 20 points in each of the past six games.

Despite all the injuries, the Tar Heels rank 11th in the country in rebound rate while Virginia Tech is 277th in this category.

With an advantage on the glass and a healthy Anthony, who is registering 19.6 points and 4.1 assists per game, North Carolina should get revenge and keep its NCAA Tournament hopes alive.

The Play: North Carolina, -3¹/₂.

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