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Miami vs. North Carolina ATS Picks

NCAAF Week 9 Picks

The Miami Hurricanes are continuing to blow right through their schedule. For the first time since moving over to the ACC, the Canes are the class of the ACC Coastal Division and legitimately have the look of a National Championship contender.

Going on the road is never easy in conference play, but the North Carolina Tar Heels have been rather toothless all season long and shouldn't put up much of a fight.

Miami Hurricanes vs. North Carolina Tar Heels
Date and Time
: Saturday, October 28, 2017, 12 p.m. ET
Location: Kenan Stadium, Chapel Hill, NC
Opening College Football Odds: Miami -20
Miami vs. North Carolina TV Coverage: ESPN2

Larry Fedora's team went from the penthouse to the outhouse in a hurry. In 2015 and 2016, the Tar Heels went 19-8. They haven't finished worse than third in the Coastal Division since finishing fifth in 2013, and even that team ended the year at 7-6 and went on to win the Belk Bowl.

Now, the Tar Heels are just 1-7, have no chance of ultimately going to a bowl game this year, and are coming off of their new low in a blowout loss to Virginia Tech. The Hokies were up 35-0 at intermission in that game and never looked back.

It feels like Miami has played more than six games this season. The team is still learning its way around just a bit, and you could tell that early last week against Syracuse. The Hurricanes dominated that game most of the way, including picking off Eric Dungey a whopping four times in the first half.

Yet these Canes have had a history of making games harder than they've had to, just like they did by narrowly escaping Syracuse, 27-19.

The record, though? It's 6-0 no matter how you slice it.

The one knock on this team might be its lack of a running game now. Malik Rosier is being asked to throw the ball a lot more often with Mark Walton out for the rest of the season with an ankle injury. Travis Homer has a lot of potential in his place, but this running back depth chart is pathetically thin at this point.

Key Players

Chazz Surratt is the future for the Tar Heels, but he went out of last week's game with an undisclosed injury after throwing just two passes. The team was no better with Brandon Harris under center, and it was just as not-special when Surratt came back into the fold.

The theme really is the same for UNC: This team can't figure out how to block. It's strange to think that to be the case with the Heels having four seniors along their starting offensive line, yet this unit has regressed more than any other on this team this year.

You can point at Surratt and suggest that he's nowhere near Mitch Trubisky, the man who was the No. 2 pick in the NFL Draft just a few short months ago, but without help from this offensive line, no matter who is under center is going to be running for his life.

Miami vs. North Carolina Free Picks

We're learning a lot about this North Carolina team with each passing game. The team's offensive line was probably always woeful, but that was covered up by having a veteran quarterback like Trubisky who knew how to get the ball out of his hands in a hurry.

Harris is a transfer from LSU, while Surratt is just getting his first taste of big boy college football. Neither man was truly ready to step up to the plate and keep this offense going.

The Miami defensive line has been dominant over the course of the last several weeks, and we can't see this unit backing down against one of the worst teams in the ACC.

Maybe there's some complacency here with games coming up against Virginia Tech and Notre Dame at home, but we doubt it. Mark Richt is too good of a coach to let his team take anyone for granted.

We'll begrudging lay the points at our favorite college football sportsbooks.

College Football ATS Pick: Miami -20 at
College Football Score Prediction: Miami 31, North Carolina 10