National Championship: Take Kansas to beat UNC on Monday night

The final men's basketball game of the season features two of the most prolific programs in the sport.

The Kansas Jayhawks were at the top of the sport for most of the season and they have played like the highest seeded team left in the tournament over their last 60 minutes on the floor.

The North Carolina Tar Heels started peaking at the end of the regular season with their first victory over Duke.

UNC looked impressive in most of its NCAA tournament games, but it comes into Monday with some potential fatigue after an emotional battle with Duke.

Kansas had an easy game by Final Four standards on Saturday night and its defense could tire out the UNC offense much like it has against its last two opponents.

National Championship Pick

March Madness Record: 33-33-1

North Carolina vs. Kansas (-4) (-192)

The best version of Kansas is better than the best version of North Carolina.

Kansas just played the best 60 minutes of its season in the second half against Miami and in the Final Four against Villanova.

David McCormack was excellent in the paint during that stretch and he could win the matchup against Armando Bacot down low.

Bacot is dealing with an ankle injury, but I'm acting as if he is as close to 100 percent as possible.

The knock on Bacot is that he fouled out in the final few minutes of UNC's Final Four win over Duke.

McCormack used plenty of shot fakes to work his way to the basket for easy layups, or trips to the foul line, against Miami and Villanova.

If McCormack gets Bacot in foul trouble early, that is a game-changer for the Jayhawks. The same can be said if the opposite happens in favor of UNC.

Kansas' X-factor on the perimeter will not be Ochai Agbaji, Christian Braun or Remy Martin.

It will be Dajuan Harris, who thrived on the defensive side of the ball against Miami's guard-heavy lineup and Villanova's starting five that lacked size.

Harris needs to lock up Caleb Love or R.J. Davis to make life more difficult on the UNC backcourt. The other UNC guard could be contained by Agbaji.

Kansas ranks 17th in adjusted defensive efficiency and it held four of its five NCAA tournament opponents to 65 points or fewer.

North Carolina allowed 77 points to Duke and 86 points to Baylor. Those were the two toughest opponents the Tar Heels faced.

Kansas' defense has been more consistent, it is in the better form, it is not physically and emotionally exhausted AND it has the best player on the floor in Agbaji.

Everything about this matchup leads me to Kansas winning, so I'm willing to make some extra cash by betting the Jayhawks on the spread and on the money line.

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