Skip to main content
Jaime Jaquez Jr. of the UCLA Bruins controls the ball against the Akron Zips in the first round game of the 2022 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Moda Center on March 17, 2022 in Portland, Oregon.
Jaime Jaquez Jr. of the UCLA Bruins controls the ball against the Akron Zips in the first round game of the 2022 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Moda Center on March 17, 2022 in Portland, Oregon. Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images via AFP.

The Stanford Cardinal look to upset the UCLA Bruins as Pac-12 conference play gets underway with a marquee Thursday night matchup. Read on for our top UCLA-Stanford college basketball picks.

As Pac-12 Thursday games return, you know the college basketball season is in full swing. After watching the Buffalo Bills-New England Patriots game on Thursday Night Football, what better way to end your night than with some Pac-12 basketball?

The Cardinal are 6.5-point underdogs against the Bruins at home, but they're determined to start the conference schedule on the right foot.

Here are our top picks for the college basketball matchup between UCLA and Stanford (odds via FanDuel Sportsbook and BetMGM; pick confidence based on a 1-to-5-star scale).

Check out Thursday's college basketball best bets and our Creighton vs. Texas picks.

UCLA vs. Stanford Game Info

Date: Thursday, Dec. 1, 10:30 p.m. ET
Location: Maples Pavilion, Stanford, CA

UCLA vs. Stanford Odds

UCLA vs. Stanford Odds Analysis

Initially, UCLA opened as a 5.5-point road favorite, but the line has since been moved up to UCLA -6.5. This isn't a consensus number, as some sportsbooks are trading UCLA as a 6-point favorite. 

The total opened at 136.5 and has since fallen to 134.5. This represents some reverse line movement since 65% of the cash has been wagered on the Over, but the total has decreased by two points. I believe the total will close at 135.5.

UCLA vs. Stanford Picks

  • Spread: Stanford +6.5 (-110 via BetMGM) ★★★
  • Over/Under Under 135.5 (-108 via FanDuel) ★★★

UCLA vs. Stanford ATS Pick

Stanford +6.5 (-110) ★★★

There's no reason to be deceived by the Stanford Cardinal's 3-4 record so far this season. The Cardinal aren't an NCAA Tournament team, but they're better than you would expect based on their record. It has been a challenging non-conference schedule for Stanford with games against San Diego State, Wisconsin, Ole Miss, and Memphis. 

It's not easy to win on the road in college basketball, and it becomes even more difficult when playing a team within your conference. As the Cardinal open Pac-12 conference play against an in-state rival such as UCLA, I expect their fans to bring the energy. On the Cardinal's website, there were not too many tickets left for Thursday's game. When they hosted San Diego State earlier this season, Maples Pavilion was half full, but I anticipate a very different situation when they play UCLA. 

As a road favorite at Stanford, I believe UCLA should be trading closer to a 4.5-point favorite. It's difficult to win by more than six points on the road, and with the spread moving from UCLA -5.5 to UCLA -6.5, I believe that the Cardinal are the correct side to back.

Ensure you get the hook on the 6-point spread by shopping around. At both DraftKings and Caesars, UCLA is listed as only a 6-point favorite. 

UCLA vs. Stanford O/U Pick

Under 135.5 (-108) ★★★

We will need Stanford to play a grind it out style of basketball that we just saw the Cardinal play against Memphis if they wish to stay within 6.5 points of UCLA on Thursday night. On a neutral court, Stanford lost by eight points to Memphis, but the final score was only 56-48. It's not unusual for the Cardinal to extend their offensive possessions deep into the shot clock. 

In the odds analysis, I highlighted that we have some reverse line movement here with more money being wagered on the Over, but the total has fallen from the opening line of 136.5. I agree with the sharp action and will follow their lead. I believe the total should trade closer to 133.5, which is not a huge edge, but this is the reason I'm backing the Under on the 135.5. 

DraftKings is offering the total at 135 (-105) and while the juice is slightly less at -105 compared to -108, the extra half point is worth the three cents. If the 135.5 at FanDuel traded at a price higher than -110, you would bet the 135 (-105) line via DraftKings. 

Where to Bet on UCLA vs. Stanford Picks

Here are our top-rated sportsbooks:

UCLA-Stanford picks made 12/01/2022 at 2 p.m. ET.