In a clash of the Pac-12’s two most celebrated basketball programs, the No. 8 Arizona Wildcats will head to Southern California to face the No. 4 UCLA Bruins. Tip-off is scheduled for Saturday, March 4 at 10 p.m ET from Pauley Pavilion and will be nationally televised on ESPN.
Let’s take a look at the odds and lines on DraftKings Sportsbook and make some picks.
Arizona vs. UCLA odds
Spread: UCLA -5.5
Moneyline: UCLA -215, Arizona +185
What will likely end up being the 2023 Pac-12 conference title game (again), the UCLA Bruins (26-4, 17-2 Pac-12) and the Arizona Wildcats (25-5, 14-5 Pac-12) will meet for the second time this season. In the first matchup back on January 21 in Tucson, a late rally from the Bruins was held off, as Arizona won 58-52 (ending UCLA’s 14-game winning streak in the process).
UCLA followed up the loss at ‘Zona by then losing to USC, but have proceeded to run the table—The Bruins have not lost since, snapping off nine-straight victories heading into Saturday’s showdown. The Wildcats, who almost always seem to be playing well, are coming off a 87-81 win over the Trojans. However, the game prior, the Cats suffered perhaps their most demoralizing defeat of the season after watching a successful Sun Devil half-court buzzer on their home floor. Regardless, Arizona and UCLA will both enter Saturday night’s contest with all the motivation they’ll need.
The Pick: UCLA -5.5
My lean it toward the host-Bruins this weekend. Sure, Arizona managed to stop a UCLA winning streak once already this year, but that was in Tucson. In Westwood, it will obviously be a different atmosphere (both schools showcase tenacious home student sections), as the Bruins have not lost in their own gym this season. Given how well UCLA has been playing as of late (winning their last three home games by an average margin of 20.7 PPG), I cannot pick against them at Pauley Pavilion.