UCLA vs USC Odds, Prediction | How to Bet This L.A. Rivalry

UCLA vs USC Odds, Prediction | How to Bet This L.A. Rivalry article feature image

Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Image. Pictured: Tyger Campbell (UCLA)

UCLA vs. USC Odds

Thursday, Jan. 26
9 p.m. ET
-110o / -110u
USC Odds
-110o / -110u
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute college basketball odds here.

The competition for the Crosstown Cup reaches the hardwood leg on Thursday as the UCLA Bruins take on their rivals, the USC Trojans.

UCLA was on a tear, as it rattled off 14 straight victories before losing to Arizona on Saturday.

However, getting back on track will be easier said than done since the Trojans have proven to be a tough out. In the first meeting with the Bruins this season, USC gave them a run for their money as UCLA escaped with a two-point victory.

Will the Trojans finish the job, or can the Bruins start another win streak?

Let's find out as we break down UCLA vs. USC in search of the best bet.

UCLA Bruins

After a few early-season losses, the Bruins' spot amongst the nation's elite teams was in serious question.

However, after those losses, they went on a massive winning streak, taking down the likes of Oregon, Maryland, Kentucky and USC.

When you look at this UCLA squad, it's arguably one of the most complete teams in the country. The Bruins have size, shooting, athleticism and an excellent defense.

They are an experienced team led by seniors Jaime Jaquez Jr. and Tyger Campbell. Those two set the tone on both ends of the floor and have made the Bruins a very disciplined team.

The Trojans possess a ton of interior size, though, and that could cause issues for UCLA.

USC Trojans

This USC team has shown that it will play to its strengths regardless of its opposition.

The Trojans lean on the veteran duo of Boogie Ellis and Drew Peterson, but they both were held relatively quiet in the first meeting. Reese Dixon-Waters came off the bench to lead them in scoring in that game.

That matchup let the Bruins know that they have three real threats to worry about, although that experience could lead UCLA to play a different style of defense.

USC utilizes length to create space off the high pick-and-roll to attempt mid-range shots, but the Trojans' perimeter shooting has been shaky at best. They are 276th from beyond the arc and have shot 41% on farther 2s.

We should see the Bruins fight over ball screens in an attempt to push the Trojans' backcourt further away. If they are successful, we could see some sizable scoring droughts.

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UCLA vs. USC Betting Pick

The Bruins' winning streak may have been snapped, but it was not because of a poor performance.

They have all the tools to get back on track on Thursday against the Trojans.

They have also had five days to reset and game plan for a team they know how to defeat, so I expect the Bruins to come out sharp on both ends of the floor and pull away from the Trojans.

Back them to cover as road favorites.

Pick: UCLA -4.5 (Play to -6)

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Nick Sterling
Jun 22, 2024 UTC