College Basketball Odds, Picks & Predictions for UCLA vs. Oregon (Thursday, February 24)
Via Michael Owens/Getty Images. Pictured: Jaime Jaquez
- The UCLA Bruins face the Oregon Ducks on Thursday night in Eugene.
- Oregon is a home underdog as it looks to complete the season sweep against UCLA.
- College basketball betting analyst Doug Ziefel breaks down the matchup and shares his best bet below.
UCLA vs. Oregon Odds
-110o / -110u
-110o / -110u
It has been a season of ebbs and flows for Dana Altman’s club. The Oregon Ducks are in the midst of a downward spiral after a tough road trip through the state of Arizona. However, they now get to return home, but now they’ll host the surging UCLA Bruins.
Since their last loss to USC, the Bruins have been reenergized and are playing with the type of intensity that got them to the Final Four last season. But, making another run and redeeming their loss has to be fresh on their minds, and the veterans on this team know that now is the time to get hot. So, with their March aspirations in sight, can the Bruins continue to finish strong?
Bruins Playing in High Gear
UCLA has begun to regain the form that many expected upon entering this season. They will enter this matchup on a three-game winning streak, but the metrics show that this streak may only be the beginning of what is to come.
The Bruins have beaten each of their last three opponents by double digits and have done it through excellent play on both ends of the court. The Bruins have a 54 percent Effective Field Goal percentage over their recent stretch, whereas their opponents were held to just 38.9 percent.
The Bruins’ stellar play should continue against the Ducks. Oregon has had defensive issues all season long, but they have become glaring of late. They surrendered 81 points in a loss to Arizona State, allowing them to shoot to a 65.7 Effective Field Goal percentage. The Ducks followed up that performance by allowing 84 more points to Arizona as the Wildcats put up a 62.9 Effective Field Goal percentage.
If the Ducks allow the Bruins to shoot anywhere near those percentages, they will be in quite a hole.
Ducks Need to Play Through Richardson
Through their recent stretch of losses, the lone bright spot for Oregon has been Will Richardson. He has been a consistent source of offense as he averages 15.2 points per game on 48 percent shooting. If the Ducks hope to be competitive in this contest, getting Richardson open shots will be critical.
It will be best for Oregon to slow the game down and get quality looks from inside the arc. While Richardson has shown plenty of prowess from deep, the Bruins have ratcheted up their perimeter defense of late as they have held their last three opponents to just 22.4 percent from behind the arc.
The Ducks executed this plan to perfection when they took down the Bruins back in January. Richardson was not alone in the scoring department in that meeting as he and five other Ducks players scored in double figures. A great deal of Oregon’s damage was done on the inside as only 26 of their 70 field goal attempts were threes.
UCLA vs. Oregon Betting Pick
This matchup is a case of two teams heading in opposite directions. The Bruins have been playing some of their best basketball of the season, and this version of UCLA is a bad matchup for Oregon and their defensive woes.
The market has already jumped on the road discount that we are getting here as the line has already ticked up by a half point. This line may keep moving as KenPom had the Bruins as six-point favorites. I would be comfortable backing the Bruins up to -4 as they should roll in Eugene.