NCAA Tournament First Round: UNC vs Florida Gulf Coast, 7:20 PM, TBS
UNC opens NCAA Tournament seed for the sixth time under Roy Williams and for the second time at PNC Arena in Raleigh. The Tar Heels get First Four survivor Florida Gulf Coast in what has become a trendy "hey this could be the one" in the continual question for a #16 seed to be a #1 seed.
The main concern for UNC coming into this game is how they respond after climbing to the top of the ACC mountain last week in Washington, D.C. A slight hangover from that and the fact FGCU has a tournament game under its belt might make this a tad closer early in the contest. That and the fact Roy Williams will use his bench to keep players fresh could lead to some disjointed moments for the Tar Heels.
Even considering that, there also isn't any reason to think the Tar Heels won't continued with the level of defense seen last weekend in the ACC Tournament. The Tar Heels might show some inconsistent shooting and sport some offensive dips with lineup rotations. Ultimately UNC has the personnel and the advantage of a home crowd to dispatch the Eagles.
Coming out the the ACC Tournament there are still some questions about the play of Justin Jackson. The sophomore hit a nice groove at the end of the regular season but clearly had issues against Virginia. Jackson is very much an X factor with how successful UNC can be. It is clear Brice Johnson and Joel Berry are the top offensive options with Marcus Paige settling into a role as defensive stopper with a still effective offensive game. Getting Jackson on track is critical to making UNC a tough team guard with multiple offensive options.
UNC 90 FGCU 65