- The Washington Times - Sunday, March 15, 2009

LAS VEGAS (AP) - Nevada sports books have picked North Carolina as a slight favorite to win the NCAA tournament this year, assuming point guard Ty Lawson is OK to play.

Oddsmaker Dan O’Brien of Las Vegas Sports Consultants says the Tar Heels will likely get 5-2 odds in many books, or may be 2-1 favorites in casinos where many bettors have gambled on them.

North Carolina is a 4-to-1 choice, according to Keith Glantz and Russell Culver.

O’Brien says that without Lawson, who sat out of the ACC tournament last week, the Tar Heels would probably be underdogs compared with Louisville and Pittsburgh.

O’Brien says the No. 1 seeds will be considered slightly better this year than in past years.

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