Look 'Under' With Washington-UCLA NCAA Basketball Picks Wednesday Night

Willie Bee

Wednesday, February 25, 2015 12:39 PM UTC

Wednesday, Feb. 25, 2015 12:39 PM UTC

The UCLA Bruins are struggling in the middle of the Pac-12 standings as they prepare to host the Washington Huskies on Wednesday's college basketball betting card.

It's a pretty strong Hump Day college basketball schedule with three of the top 4 teams in the country in action. Down south we have No. 1 trying to advance its unbeaten string to 28 games, at the same time back east No. 3 Virginia and No. 4 Duke take on some of the bottom of the barrel teams in the ACC.

Meanwhile out west, the UCLA Bruins are mired in a 2-game skid which leaves head coach Steve Alford looking for ways to get his squad back into the picture as the regular season slate winds down. The Bruins were picked as the runner-ups on the NCAA basketball futures odds behind Arizona to win the Pac-12, yet are currently stuck in the middle of the conference pack.

If there's good news for Alford and the Bruins, it's that they are home in Westwood and taking on a Washington Huskies that is in even deeper doo-doo than UCLA. ESPN2 will televise the matchup starting at 11 PM (ET), and the Bruins are laying 10 points on the college basketball odds board.

For the second consecutive season, the rivals are only meeting once during the regular season. The Bruins have won the last four, that streak following a 4-game UW string of dubyas. UCLA owns a decided 95-40 edge in the series, and has covered five of the last six get-togethers.

It was two seasons ago the last time they played at Pauley Pavilion, UCLA getting the 59-57 win while Husky backers took home the cash with a +7 line. Three of the last four in LA have never made it to the totals.


Huskies Spending Weekend In Tinseltown
Washington (15-11 straight up, 11-14 against the spread) shot from the gate 11-0, an opening run that included wins over a couple of ranked teams at the time, San Diego State and Oklahoma. Suddenly, a team that was something of a long shot on the Pac-12 futures odds at 12/1 was No. 13 in the country, and life was good for Lorenzo Romar's bunch.

Then came a loss at home to Stony Brook giving up 13½ in Seattle before three defeats to begin the conference schedule. That 11-0 start was then completely wiped out in a 7-game losing skid, which also pretty much wiped out the wallets belonging to U-Dub bettors.

Washington did finally end the tailspin with an 87-84 rivalry win as a small road 'dog at Washington State last Sunday, and will stay in Los Angeles this weekend for a Saturday scrap against USC.


Bruins Home Through End Of Conference Slate
It has night-&-day for UCLA (16-12 SU, ATS) in the Home/Away columns. The Bruins did get spanked pretty handily at home by Gonzaga, but that's the only setback they've suffered in 14 games at Pauley so far (10-4 ATS). Three wins in 14 tries away from LA show up, however, including four neutral site affairs, just four of those spread-beaters.

Only three games remain on the slate for Alford to get his team in shape for the Pac-12 tourney in Nevada two weeks from now, and the best news is all three will be at home.

There is an interesting conflict of trends for college basketball totals bettors to think about once that number comes out; the 'over' is strong in recent Pac-12 action for Washington (7-1 O/U) while the 'under' has been a very good winner the past couple of seasons for UCLA in conference games.

Expecting a total in the low-to-mid 140s, I'll ride the Bruins side of those trends with a free NCAA Basketball pick on the final score never reaching the mark.

My Free Pick: Washington-UCLA Under

Season: 53-46-2 (+2.4)

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