Opening line: UNC +8.5
Current line (as of 10 AM Monday 11/6): UNC +10
First impressions: It’s about what you would expect, although I should mention that the Heels are playing better on the road than at home this season. After all, they haven’t won yet in Kenan. Vegas seems to know that UNC is a better team than their record shows, plus they’re coming off of a bye (as is Pitt, for the record). This is a perfectly respectable line, even considering the fact that Pitt is below .500.
Why this is the line: UNC showed it had some fight against Miami, and had a handful of plays gone differently, they would have come away with the upset. Vegas definitely paid a little bit of attention during that game, or else the opening line wouldn’t have been so low. People are definitely buying low on the Heels, however—the line has increased a point and a half in just 24 hours.
How the line could still move: It’s already moved a pretty fair amount, and +10 is a good place for it to settle. I certainly don’t see it growing much larger, seeing as Vegas and the bettors aren’t too far apart in terms of where they value UNC football. I could see it shift towards UNC a little bit closer to gameday, because bettors will likely see that UNC is coming off a close game against a Miami team that impressed against VT this week, and is also coming off of a bye.
My advice: It’s a perfect recipe for a UNC victory. The spotlight of national television, the lack of pressure in a lost season, and the will to take a moral victory in a season that has dragged on at times. I would certainly advise you take the points, and if you think UNC is capable of winning outright (you should), the money line is +315. If you put $100 on UNC and they win, you’ll triple your investment. As Troy Bolton once said, bet on it.