NCAA Basketball Picks: Back Arizona To Get Some Revenge On UCLA

Charles Stark

Friday, February 12, 2016 1:23 PM GMT

The PAC 12 has been one of the more interesting conferences to keep an eye on this season. Tonight could we see another one when UCLA visits Arizona? Let's review the NCAA Basketball odds.

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NCAA Basketball Pick: Arizona -11
Best Line Offered: at Bookmaker

 

NCAA basketball odds makers have come out making Arizona a -11 favorite and the total around 153. That line seems a bit high but I am anticipating Arizona to come out and play one of their best games of the year. For one of my selections I will back them minus the double digits to hammer UCLA.

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UCLA Bruins
UCLA is averaging 79.3 points per game while shooting 45.6% from the field, and allowing 77 points per game on 42.2% shooting from the field.  On the season they are 8-15 overall against the spread, and a poor 2-8 on the road.  In Pac 12 play they have been bad on the road sporting a 1-4 record, and overall is not much better as they are sitting at 4-6 in league. At this point it looks unlikely they will make the tournament... at least not the big tournament. Offensively they push tempo about as much as anyone in the country averaging 63.3 field goal attempts per game ranking 14th in the country, and making 28.9 of those attempts per average ranking them 15th. Statistically they have been decently efficient and are one of the best rebounding teams in the country. The major issue for them has been on the defensive side where the tempo they push comes back to bite them. The Bruins allow opponents to get off a gaudy 64.1 field goal attempts per game which ranks them in the very bottom part in the country. They simply do not do anything good defensively except for holding opponents to a decent overall shooting percentage, but even that ranks out of the top 100 teams. This team reminds me a lot of Indiana, last season, very good offense and pace but little defense.

 

Arizona Wildcats
Arizona is averaging 81.2 points per game while shooting 49.1% from the field, and allowing 67.6 points per game on 41.5% shooting from the field. On the season they are 14-10 overall against the spread, and 8-5 at home. After getting shocked at home by Oregon, Arizona has rattled off three victories in a row and is once again living up to the early season expectations. They have four losses in league play including the one to Oregon, but three of those came on the road, and all of them were tight contests. The last time they faced UCLA the Bruins shot over 50% overall and exactly 50% from beyond the arc. I highly doubt they will shoot the ball nearly that well in Arizona. Offensively Arizona has been extremely good this season ranking 10th and 13th in the country in overall shooting percentage and shooting efficiency respectively. They also rank in the top part of the country in the most crucial offensive categories. Defensively is where they have lacked this year when compared to Arizona teams of the past which has been the emphasis of coach Sean Miller. Still, statistically they have been much better than average defending from the interior to beyond the arc. They also rank third in the country in opponent total rebounds allowing just 29 per game.

The way I look at this game, I see Arizona blowing it open early and then cruising winning by well into double digits. For one of your NCAA basketball picks I recommend backing the Wildcats to lay the hammer down on UCLA tonight. This is a good spot for them to get some revenge and get ready for their huge game with USC following.