Arizona vs UCLA Betting Odds & Picks: Expect a Blowout in LA

Arizona vs UCLA Betting Odds & Picks: Expect a Blowout in LA article feature image

Zac BonDurant/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: UCLA quarterback Dorian thompson-Robinson.

  • Arizona makes the short trip to Los Angeles for a game against UCLA.
  • The Bruins are heavily favored, but do the Wildcats have enough offense to cover the number?
  • Brad Cunningham previews the game and shares his best bet below.

Arizona vs UCLA Odds

Saturday, Nov. 12
10:30 p.m. ET
Arizona Odds
-110o / -110u
-110o / -110u
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.

UCLA looks to stay alive in the College Football Playoff picture when it hosts Arizona at the Rose Bowl on Saturday night.

Arizona is in the middle of another poor season, currently sitting at 3-6 and on a four-game losing streak. It needs to win out to get to a bowl game, which seems bleak right now — but it's still possible.

UCLA is firmly in the CFP picture right now with a couple of huge games on deck. The Bruins have a massive game against USC on deck that will ultimately decide who goes to the Pac-12 Championship, but they have to get by Arizona first.

Arizona Wildcats

Wildcats Offense

I think the perfect word to describe Arizona quarterback Jayden de Laura would be "volatile." He's had some outstanding games, but boy, is he reckless with the ball in his hands.

He does have 20 big-time throws and 22 touchdown passes, but the fact that he has only eight interceptions is quite astonishing because he has 20 turnover-worthy plays this season, the second-most in college football.

Image via PFF.

While Arizona's passing game has been a bit suspect, it's actually been running the ball quite well. The Wildcats are averaging 4.7 yards per carry while ranking eighth in Rushing Success Rate and 14th in Offensive Line Yards.

The problem is they've fallen behind so often because of their defense that they're forced to throw the ball a ton, which is why they're running the ball on only 42.4% of snaps.

Wildcats Defense

Arizona's defense is an abomination to football. The Wildcats cannot stop anybody.

They just went to Salt Lake City and got their doors blown off by Utah, allowing 45 points and 5.7 yards per play — and that was a good game for them.

Arizona is allowing 6.8 yards per play while ranking dead last in Success Rate Allowed and EPA/Play Allowed.

Arizona is literally the worst run defense in the country. The Wildcats sit 130th in Defensive Line Yards, dead last in Rushing Success Rate Allowed and 130th in EPA/Rush allowed.

Their secondary is just as bad, as Arizona ranks 130th in Passing Success Rate Allowed and 123rd in EPA/Pass Allowed, so this UCLA offense should be able to move the ball at will.

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UCLA Bruins

Bruins Offense

Chip Kelly's offense ranks third in Success Rate and 10th in EPA/Play while averaging 7.2 yards per play.

Most of its success though has come on the ground with Zach Charbonnet, who has been one of the best running backs in the country this season. Charbonnet is averaging a whopping 7.6 yards per carry, 4.5 yards after contact per carry and owns a 91.6 PFF rushing grade.

It also helps that he's running behind one of the best offensive lines, as UCLA ranks first in Offensive Line Yards and fourth in run-blocking grade, per PFF.

UCLA’s Zach Charbonnet breaks free for his third rushing TD 😤

(📍 @NavyFederal)

— ESPN College Football (@ESPNCFB) October 30, 2022

UCLA quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson is very good in the short passing game but tends to struggle when he has to attack a secondary. He's averaging 8.4 yards per attempt, but his average depth of target is only 6.2 yards, which is why UCLA ranks 93rd in passing explosiveness.

However, he does have the Bruins at second in Passing Success Rate and 10th in EPA/Pass.

Bruins Defense

The UCLA defense has actually been quite bad overall. The Bruins are only allowing 5.1 yards per play, but they rank 100th in Success Rate Allowed and 76th in EPA/Play.

The main problems have come against the run, which is not good news against Arizona. UCLA ranks 106th in Rushing Success Rate Allowed, 122nd in Defensive Line Yards and 95th in EPA/Rush Allowed.

The Bruins are allowing only 3.8 yards per carry on the season because they don't give up a lot of big plays, ranking 20th in rushing explosiveness allowed. That might be their saving grace in this game.

The UCLA secondary has the 36th-best coverage grade in the country and ranks 10th in explosive passing allowed. So, if de Laura decides to chuck it up for grabs, he's way overdue for a multi-interception game.

Arizona vs UCLA Matchup Analysis

Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how Arizona and UCLA match up statistically:

Arizona Offense vs. UCLA Defense
Rush Success8106
Line Yards14122
Pass Success3594
Pass Blocking**7211
Finishing Drives6798
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

UCLA Offense vs. Arizona Defense
Rush Success4131
Line Yards4130
Pass Success2130
Pass Blocking**68115
Finishing Drives26130
** Pass Blocking (Off.) vs. Pass Rush (Def.)

Pace of Play / Other
PFF Tackling10548
PFF Coverage10236
SP+ Special Teams7669
Seconds per Play24.2 (26)23.5 (18)
Rush Rate42.4% (122)55.4% (55)
Data via (CFBD), FootballOutsiders, SP+, Pro Football Focus and SportSource Analytics.

Arizona vs UCLA Betting Pick

Arizona does have a solid advantage in the run game over UCLA. But the reality is if the Cats fall behind and get into a high-scoring affair with the Bruins, they're going to have to throw the ball more often, which likely leads to more mistakes from de Laura.

Plus, I have no idea how Arizona is going to prevent Kelly's team from putting 50 on the scoreboard with how bad its defense has been playing.

I have UCLA projected as a -23.4 favorite, so I like the value on the Bruins at -19.5.

Pick: UCLA -19.5

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