• Could tonight’s championship game between Michigan State and North Carolina be all but over at halftime?
A couple of trends say so. The Tar Heels (33-4) have a 31-2 record when they go to intermission with a lead. But not so fast. The Spartans are 23-1 when leading at the half.
In Saturday’s semifinals, Carolina led Villanova 49-40 and Michigan State was up 38-36 on Connecticut at the breaks.
• Something else to keep an eye on is Michigan State’s scoring total. Tom Izzo’s team is 19-1 when it scores more than 70 points in a game. Only Gonzaga among the Heels’ last five opponents scored more than 70.
• Possible good omen for the Heels: The last team to play in its home state in the championship game was Duke in 1994 at Charlotte. With Arkansas fan and President Bill Clinton in the house, the Blue Devils lost that night to the Razorbacks.
• With 18 points in Saturday’s win, Carolina senior Tyler Hansbrough jumped Larry Bird on the all-time NCAA scoring list. Hansbrough has 2,854 points _ 12th on the all-time list.
• In championship games, the Heels are 4-4. The wins were over Kansas (1957), Georgetown (1982), Michigan (1993) and Illinois (2005). The losses: Oklahoma State (1946), UCLA (1968), Marquette (1977) and Indiana (1981).