- The UCLA vs Arizona odds favor the Wildcats by 6-points on Thursday (Feb. 3) at 8 pm ET
- The Bruins upset the Wildcats 75-59 as 2.5-point underdogs last week
- Read below for odds, analysis and a betting prediction
Payback will be on the minds of the #7 Arizona Wildcats on Thursday (Feb. 3), as they host the #3 UCLA Bruins. These two programs met a week and half ago in LA, with the Bruins steamrolling the higher ranked Wildcats 75-59 as a 2.5-point home underdog.
Fast forward 10 days and it’s UCLA that is now the higher ranked school in the AP top-25 poll, but once again they’ll be the underdog.
UCLA vs Arizona Odds
|UCLA Bruins||+215||+6 (-110)||O 146 (-110)|
|Arizona Wildcats||-265||-6 (-110)||U 146 (-110)|
Odds as of Feb. 2nd at BetMGM.
Arizona is currently a 6-point favorite, in a contest that features a total of 146. Tip-off is scheduled for 8 pm ET at the McKale Center in Tucson, AZ, and a game of this magnitude is being given the prime time treatment nationwide on ESPN.
Both teams are top-ten favorites in the NCAA Tournament title odds. Arizona has slightly better Final Four odds at +325 compared to UCLA at 363.
UCLA vs Arizona Betting Analysis
The Bruins jumped out to an 11-point halftime lead last Monday, and cruised to victory. They shot a blistering 50% from the field, and 47.1% from three, led by the 15 points from Johnny Juzang.
Johnny Juzang’s jumper is silky smooth. pic.twitter.com/sKgG2M8f9H
— SLAM University (@slam_university) January 26, 2022
The 6-7 junior was one of four UCLA starters to finish in double-figures, and is earning player of the year consideration. He’s averaging 18.1 points per game this season, while knocking down 39.5% of his three-point attempts.
He’s the heart and soul of a Bruins team that is 11-1 in their last 12 games, and has now beaten the Wildcats six straight times. Juzang was in the COVID protocols earlier this week, but has been cleared for Thursday’s action. Third-leading scorer Jaime Jaquez Jr. on the other hand, is questionable with an ankle injury.
As good as the offense was in the last meeting between these two Pac-12 juggernauts, UCLA’s defense was even better. They held Arizona to a season-low 59 points, 27 points below the Wildcats’ season average.
The rout is on at Pauley Pavilion. Arizona is going home with a big-time loss inflicted by UCLA.
— eric sondheimer (@latsondheimer) January 26, 2022
Arizona shot just 31% from the field, and 25% from three, while committing 14 turnovers. The Bruins did a phenomenal job defending projected lottery pick Bennedict Mathurin in particular, as he made only 5-of-22 attempts en route to his least efficient game since the season opener.
Bennedict Mathurin came into tonight shooting 59.4% on 2s, but is 2-16 inside the arc against UCLA.
If the team which drafts him will ask him to create offense, they’ll be disappointed. pic.twitter.com/Y1zxKR2tnN
— DGC (@Itamar_17_10) January 26, 2022
If there’s one concerning takeaway for the Bruins from that game, and there may only be one, it’s their play on the glass. Despite the convincing win, UCLA was outrebounded 49-34, and coughed up 21 offensive rebounds. They can’t expect another hyper-inefficient game from the Wildcats offense, and if they get beat up that bad on the glass on Thursday, it’s going to be a long night.
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UCLA vs Arizona Betting Trends
Arizona’s down performance last Monday came literally out of nowhere. They’d scored at least 82 points in each of their previous three games, and reached 95 points twice since the start of Pac-12 play.
Tommy Lloyd says Arizona is “overall in a better place” since last week’s loss to UCLA.
No. 7 Arizona faces No. 3 UCLA at McKale Center Thursday night. pic.twitter.com/LHQ7sYIoBl
— The Wildcaster (@TheWildcaster) February 2, 2022
They rank first in the country in assists and total rebounding, and second in points per game and average score margin. Defensively, the numbers are just as impressive. They allow only 64.5 points per night, while ranking second in opponent shooting percentage, and fourth in blocks.
UCLA’s season long numbers are impressive as well, they just pale in comparison to those of the Wildcats. The Bruins average eight fewer points per game, and rank 61 spots lower in shooting percentage. They’re a much worse rebounding team per the numbers, and that’s definitely an area Arizona is going to have to exploit.
Defensively, they grade out lower than the Wildcats per KenPom, and actually rank four spots lower than Arizona in the overall adjusted efficiency metrics.
— Arizona Basketball (@ArizonaMBB) January 29, 2022
If there’s one glaring trend to pay attention to, it’s both team’s tendency to play games that fail to live up to the total recently. The under fell 16 points short of the total last time they met, and all five of UCLA’s road games this season have failed to reach the number. The under is 4-1 in the Bruins last five games overall, and 6-3 in conference play so far.
“Our energy level was more important than any game plan that we had [versus Arizona]. It’s always important to have the right plan, but when players play with a collective effort, they can overcome your game plan if it’s wrong.”
Coach Cronin, speaking to the media on Tuesday pic.twitter.com/tWrkkQlkXl
— UCLA Men’s Basketball (@UCLAMBB) February 1, 2022
The Arizona betting trends show five of the last six games falling short of the total; the under is also 7-2 in the Wildcats’ last nine games. They’ve faced three ranked opponents so far, with each game going under by an average of 7 points per contest.
UCLA vs Arizona Pick
This is a massive game for both programs. It’s both of their final chances to beat a top-20 team per NET rankings during the regular season. With both currently projected as number two seeds in March Madness, it shouldn’t surprise anyone if this game is more hard fought, and more tightly contested than expected.
Pick: Under 146 (-110)
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