North Carolina and East Carolina start the season with an intrastate battle against each other.
The Wolfpack has reached another season with plenty of preseason hype.To much of the ACC media, North Carolina State is seen as a legitimate threat for Clemson to win the entire conference.
There’s also the hype surrounding the East Carolina program. It seems like a quietly rising AAC team, trying to build on the 7-5 season from a year ago.
Can the Pirates hang out on this one to cover the spread? Check out our picks and predictions for college football in North Carolina and East Carolina.
North Carolina vs East Carolina odds
This odds widget is Best available odds Each betting market from a regulated sportsbook.
This spread opened with North Carolina as the 12-point favorite and not far from it. The total started at 52 and remained the same, with a slight money advantage for the under.
Use the live odds widget above to track future line movements leading up to kickoff and see the full college football odds before placing your bets.
North Carolina vs East Carolina Prediction
The forecast was made on September 1, 2022 at 6:00 PM ET.
Click on each forecast to jump to the full analysis.
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North Carolina vs. East Carolina game info
• position: Dowdy Ficklen Stadium, Greenville, North Carolina
• date: Saturday, September 3, 2021
• kick off: 12:00 PM ET
• tv set: ESPN
North Carolina vs East Carolina Betting Preview
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Betting trends you should know
Under is 5-2 in North Carolina’s last seven non-conference games. Check out the NCAA betting trends for North Carolina State vs. East Carolina.
North Carolina State vs East Carolina Picks and Predictions
Side and total predictions are based on line and total analysis for this game. Our best bet is a selection of favorites in all markets.
For the third year in a row, North Carolina State University enters the season with high expectations. This time, mostly because multiple seniors took advantage of their extra COVID years, the last two he underwhelmed under Dave Doreen, and his two years before that both saw his double-digit wins. I couldn’t fit it.
Therefore, we cannot justify using Wolfpack to cover double-digit spreads in Game 1.
NC State was one of the least efficient teams in the ACC when it came to offense a year ago. Its efficiency rating (a statistic that measures the percentage of successful plays) was 40%. That offense will be left to fill several holes this season, replacing three offensive linemen and their entire backfield.
Therefore, it is difficult to rely on covering double-digit spreads out of the gate. It also explains why I’m not as keen on the North Carolina hype as others.
That offense is tasked with scoring regularly against an East Carolina defense that was already strong a season ago and needs to improve. Last year, he kept his opponents under a touchdown more than 75% of the time. This was his second in the AAC and his 33rd nationally.
The Pirates return most of their defense, other than the very talented All-AAC CB Jaquan McMillan. The rest of the secondary, who intercepted 15 passes, came back. The line is long overdue, with depth and toughness bringing back the most notable players.
East Carolina needs to do enough work to slow North Carolina’s offense and stay in the game. The question is, can the Pirates do what they want to do on offense: run the ball. I believe they can. At least I think they can do it well enough.
The North Carolina State defense was solid a season ago, but a flurry of injuries made it clear what I believe to be more similar earlier this year. That revelation allowed North Carolina to finish the season rushing for 7.2 yards per carry. Unfortunately, we missed the entire linebacking crew in those games. Now that they’ve left school, we’ll miss them again.
I’m endorsing East Carolina for pulling off a complete upset here. There’s way too much value in this number for a game that’s supposed to be a close match throughout the game. North Carolina State has not won a game with Greenville since 2007, but now the East has won him the most talented team in Carolina.
Retreat the pirates to pull it off.
predict: East Carolina Moneyline (+350 on FanDuel)
Covering college football betting analysis
Run, run, run. That’s what East Carolina wants to do for many reasons. One is to keep NC State’s attacks off the field and the other is to impose physical offensive lines and rush attacks into the game. This means ticks, ticks, ticks off the clock, and this game points squarely under.
Some of the trends agree on this side as well.
The Under are 5-1 in their last six home games in East Carolina, including 4-0 in their last four.
Under is also 5-2 in North Carolina’s last seven non-conference games.
The rivalry aspect of this game also presents a call to play near the best. I’ve talked a lot about the East Carolina offense. I think it’s essential for this handicap because I believe it dominates most of the game, but let’s talk about the North Carolina State offense.
It’s difficult to pinpoint exactly what the North Carolina State attack will look like. We lost our best receiver in Emeka Emegy and our best running back in Donovan Knight.
Their offense wasn’t efficient last season, so naturally, they shouldn’t expect it to be effective anytime soon. North Carolina State ranked below average for pace last season, and the high number of moving parts shouldn’t change the reason.
I’m going under here because both the trend and my handicap match.
predict: less than 51.5 (-105 in FanDuel)
My best bet is a nice combination of under and double.
There is a North Carolina attack on one side that is still working out. Devin Leary has a good signal-caller, but the pieces around him are very much a question mark. As a result, the Wolfpack are prone to early season mistakes on roads that stall their outdrives.
On the other side you have an offense that knows what it wants to do. We need to burn the clock because we want to run the ball better than we did a season ago. It’s the underbetter’s best friend.
Choose: Under 51.5 years old (-105 in FanDuel)
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