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How and what to watch for No. 23 NC State vs. No. 14 North Carolina

The Wolfpack will be without their starting QB for this matchup.

Sam Howell of North Carolina fakes a handoff to teammate Michael Carter during a game between Virginia Tech and North Carolina at Kenan Memorial Stadium on October 10, 2020 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Photo by Andy Mead/ISI Photos/Getty Images

This week the North Carolina Tar Heels welcome the NC State Wolfpack to Chapel Hill, and the #23 Heels are looking to get right after an upset loss to Florida State.

UNC suffered their first loss of the season in Tallahassee last weekend, where they were totally dominated in the first half and couldn’t climb themselves out of the hole they dug despite winning the second half 21-0.

Quarterback Sam Howell had a solid game, throwing for a season-high in yards and touchdowns. He’s had a solid, but underwhelming year so far. NC State’s pass defense has given up a ton of yards through the air, and Howell is the best signal-caller they will have faced up until this point. The danger Howell faces though is turnovers, because the Wolfpack have six interceptions in the last two weeks alone. Heels senior RB Michael Carter has been very good, running for 478 yards through four games. NC State has given up nine rushing TDs and allows an average of 153 yards on the ground each week.

The NC State offense is starting this game at a disadvantage too, with starting QB Devin Leary out with a foot injury. Lucky for the Wolfpack, backup Bailey Hockman has had a good amount of playing time this season. He’s thrown for 316 yards with two touchdowns and three picks. UNC has been relatively stingy against the pass, barely allowing 200 yards on average. NC State RBs Zonovan Knight and Ricky Person Jr. have a combined 699 rushing yards and six touchdowns in five games. That could spell trouble for a UNC defense that’s given up 501 yards on the ground and six touchdowns over the last two weeks.

Game Time/TV Channel/Streaming

You can watch NC State vs. North Carolina Saturday, October 24th at 12:00 p.m. ET on ESPN, or you can stream it via the ESPN app with a cable or streaming service login.

Point Spread, Totals, Odds, Trends

Point spread: NC State vs UNC (-14.5)
Point Total: 60.5
Money line: UNC (-625), NC State (+420)

  • NC State are 4-1 ATS in their last five
  • The total has gone over in four of NC State’s last five games
  • UNC is 5-2 ATS in their last seven games
  • The total has gone under in five of UNC’s last seven games.

The Best Bet

The spread is looking like the best option here. NCSU. is without their starting quarterback and Mack Brown and his crew will want to get back on track after a tough loss to FSU.

Pick: UNC -14.5

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