The first-ever gridiron meeting between the two schools opened up with the Bruins as touchdown favorites, and there has little to no movement to that spread. Early totals on SBR's live college football odds have bounced between 48 and 50 for a game that features a good UCLA offense opposite a stout Va Tech defense.
Hokies Prep for 21st-Straight Bowl Appearance
Seeing Frank Beamer take Virginia Tech into college football's postseason schedule is nothing new. Beamer, who just wrapped up his 27th season in Blacksburg, has the Hokies about to play in their 21st consecutive bowl game and hoping to improve on a 9-11 record in that span.
Virginia Tech (8-4 straight up, 4-6-2 against the spread)
had to open the year against defending national champ
The Hokies only covered one of last five games, and that was a 42-24 triumph at the Hurricanes as 5 point road 'dogs. Those 42 points went against the norm for a Va Tech offense that averaged only 23.4 per game (96th in nation), and it was also a rather abnormal day for Logan Thomas and the offense by not turning the ball over. Beamer would no doubt love a similar performance from Thomas & Company against a decent but exploitable UCLA defense.
The Bruins, in turn, are facing one of the top defenses in
The Hokies could be without a couple of key players on defense and special teams; Cornerback Antone Exum is questionable with an ankle injury, and special teams stud Matt Roth is in the same boat with a concussion that kept him on the sidelines the final three games.
Mora Gets Big Extension To Stay At UCLA
It certainly hasn't taken Jim Mora long to help Bruins alum forget the sour ending to the Rick Neuheisel era. Having just completed his second year at Westwood, Mora has delivered back-to-back 9-win seasons and a chance to win 10 for the first time since 2005, coincidentally the last time UCLA (9-3 SU, 8-4 ATS) was in the Sun Bowl. That prompted Bruins AD Dan Guerrero to get Mora's name on a contract extension that runs through 2019.
The Bruins lost a shot at the Pac-12 title tilt with a 38-33
home loss to
Brett Hundley directed and starred in a pretty efficient
UCLA offense, leading the team in rushing (587 yds) to go with over 2,800 yards
passing and a 22:9 TD-interception ratio. The sophomore was only picked off once in the last five games, but it
was a costly INT that
There's a reason it's called the Sun Bowl since there's usually
plenty of sunshine in
I'm tempted to ride with the Hokies as underdogs, but the total intrigues me more. I'm adding the 'over' to my list of free college football bowl game picks.
Reg. Season: 31-15 (+14.5)