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Ohio State or UNC: College Lacrosse Best Bets

If there’s anything we’ve learned through the first two weekends of the college lacrosse season, it’s that we know nothing at all especially when it comes to bets. Up is down and down is up. The new-look Georgetown will squash Hopkins, right? Wrong. “Mr. 1/15 is Jordan Evan’s 2.0.” I can’t believe that was a real take. Well hey, there’s no way the reigning national champs would drop a game to in-state rival Loyola. 2023 has been unexpected and unpredictable, but that won’t stop us from making it make sense. 

Week 2 of the college lacrosse season possesses an interesting slate of games that lead to some interesting bets. How will Maryland respond after losing All-American Logan McNaney? Will the Ivy’s continue their 2022 success? There’s plenty of great storylines to follow. 

Ohio State Moneyline (-130) vs North Carolina

I really really like what I’ve seen in Columbus these past couple weeks. Maybe I’m slightly influenced by the new OSU lacrosse stadium, but it’s certainly not the Big Ten+ camera angles. How on earth did the camera angles get worse than last year’s games in the shoe! I’m no cameraman, but they’ve got to figure it out.

The Buckeye’s defense anchored by Bobby Van Buren and Marcus Hudgins has been everything as advertised thus far. Granted they’ve only played two games against Air Force and Cleveland State, the unit has still looked like one of the best in the country. 

Jack Myers is everything you want in a No.1 attackman as a dodging, shooting, and feeding threat whenever the ball is in his stick. Fairfield and LIU transfers Kyle Borda and Richie LaCalandra have made immediate impacts and add depth to the offense. Breakout midfielder Ari Allen has missed the first two games, but he should return in the near future. 

North Carolina travels to Columbus one year after an eye-opening 20-8 home defeat in last year’s matchup. Jack Myers was borderline unstoppable with nine points, and UNC couldn’t buy a faceoff win finishing 9-30 at the X. UNC lost an all-time great in Chris Gray and returns a young and inexperienced team. While Tuesday’s road win against Hopkins deserves praise, Ohio State is an entirely different beast. Don’t overthink this one. Ohio State moneyline is the play and I’d suggest this as a multi-unit play. 

Merrimack -3.5 (-110) vs Dartmouth

We’re only two weeks in and lacrosse bettors are labeling Merrimack as America’s team. It’s not Duke basketball or Kansas football, but Merrimack lacrosse. An early 3-0 record (and 3-0 start ATS) has shed light on the program from North Andover.  

Merrimack has a long history of dominance and success at the D2 level, and it was only a matter of time until that translated to D1. Year four has shown promise to be the breakthrough season many have been expecting. 

The Warriors host Dartmouth in a rematch of last year’s 8-6 Merrimack win. I really like the Rooney brothers down at attack, and goalkeeper Henry Vogt (59%) has been a star highlighted by his save-of-the-year candidate play against Hofstra. There’s a major advantage to the team playing in game No.4 versus a team playing their opener. I like Merrimack to cover at home. 

Saint Josephs -1.5 (-105) vs Towson

This line was particularly head-scratching. Every week, I play a game with myself called “guess the spread” where I simply predict lines for every D1 game. My belief was that Saint Josephs would open as 4.5/5.5 point favorites. I was absolutely shocked to discover this line was only -1.5, and at a (-105) price might I add. Saint Josephs deserves a little more respect. The Hawks return Zach Cole who is one of the premier faceoff men in the country, a star attackman in Levi Anderson, and a 54% goalie in Robbie Steely. What’s not to love about Saint Josephs?

Vegas may be overvaluing Towson’s 20-7 week 1 whomping over The Mount. I give credit where credit is due, and Towson certainly looked the part in every phase of the game. But Saint Josephs is no Mount Saint Marys. I’m sticking with the college lacrosse home favorites with this week’s bets.