Rivalry Upset Alert: UCLA +2 Our Wise NCAA Basketball Pick vs. USC

Charles Stark

Thursday, March 10, 2016 5:18 PM GMT

UCLA and USC meet up for the third time this season to kick off their PAC 12 tournament. NCAA basketball odds makers have set the number at this game a lot closer.

NCAA basketball odds experts have UCLA at a +2.5 underdog like at 5 Dimes -110. I have been a big proponent of USC this season, but I think the value for this game will be going against them. For one of my NCAA basketball picks today I will back UCLA getting the small number.

 

UCLA Bruins
UCLA averages 77.7 points per game and rank 13th in the country in field goals attempted and made per game, but they have lost their last four games in a row. This team has really underachieved this year but they can start taking steps in the right direction with a big win over USC. The key aspect of this game, and why the number is so low is that the Trojans have really been struggling as well over the past couple weeks. A couple advantages for UCLA will be the fact that they haven't faced USC in over a month, and as I have mentioned in other articles, it is not easy to beat a team three times in one season. Although they are on a four-game losing streak none of the losses were particularly horrifying and honestly except for their games against USC they have been competitive throughout the season. They have some good offensive weapons and shoot the ball well averaging 45.6% overall and 36.5% from distance. I expect them to be able to score tonight against a Trojan team that has been struggling on the defensive end.

 

USC Trojans
USC averages 80.7 points per game but has lost four of their last five games giving up an average of over 80 points in those losses. It has been a very negative turnaround for what started out as a very promising year for USC. Somewhere over the last couple weeks they have lost their defensive identity and it is really hurt them allowing teams to shoot over 47% from the field in their last four losses which is well above their average on the season of 41.4%. This is not the type of game they need to come into while struggling on this side of the ball because although they had success against UCLA earlier in the season this is still a Bruins team that can score. Statistically across the board these teams matchup very well despite the Trojans early-season success and both of them come into this game limping and desperate. I expect this game to at the very least go down to the wire so I will grab the points.

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NCAA Basketball Pick: UCLA +2
Best Line Offered: at Bovada