UCLA Bruins

College Football Betting Picks – #17 ASU Sun Devils vs. #14 UCLA Bruins

No major conference has been more of a college football betting minefield than the Pac-12, so tread with caution as you lay down money on the matchup between the red-hot Arizona State Sun Devils and the high flying UCLA Bruins. What’s curious here is that UCLA has been in the spotlight for pretty much the whole season. It’s somewhat mystifying that they’re home dogs against the upstarts from ASU. But that’s just how crazy this year has been in this bewildering conference.

UCLA is a strong 7-3 ATS on the season, which ties them with Oregon as the best spread busters in the Pac-12. It’s been a challenging year for Brent Hundley and company over the past two months, but they’ve bounced back from two road defeats against Stanford and Oregon to go 3-0 US and 2-1 ATS in their last three games against some relatively stiff competition. They’ve outscored Washington, Arizona and Colorado 117-80 in those games, and are starting to gain some momentum down the home stretch.

#17 Arizona State Sun Devils (8-2) vs. #12 UCLA Bruins (8-2)
The Arizona State Sun Devils are 2.5 point favorites over the UCLA Bruins.
Starts: 11/23/2013 7:00PM
Rose Bowl, 1001 Rose Bowl Drive
Pasadena, California

 

However, very few teams can boast the type of momentum that ASU has developed since losing a nail biter against Notre Dame in early October. Since that loss, the Sun Devils have gone 5-0 SU and 3-2 ATS and have their sights set on a South Division title. A renewed commitment to defense has been the main catalyst for their success. At the beginning of the season, ASU went 3-2 SU and allowed an average of 30.0 points against which is even more alarming when you realize they opened the year with a shutout.

During their recent five game winning streak, the Sun Devils have been magnificent defensively. They’ve allowed no more than 24-points (against Washington) and have given up just 18.8 points per game. That’s the main reason that ASU is strutting in to the Rose Bowl as road favorites. By comparison, the Bruins have allowed 23.7 points per game on the year.

BONUS COLLEGE FOOTBALL BETTING PICKS

Date
Away
Home
Pick
Sat-Nov 23-2013
Northern Illinois
Toledo
NIU -2.5
Sat-Nov 23-2013
Rutgers
Central Florida
UCF- 17
Sat-Nov 23-2013
Oklahoma
Kansas State
KSU -3.5
Sat-Nov 23-2013
Idaho
Florida State
IDHO +56
Sat-Nov 23-2013
Indiana
Ohio State
OSU -31.5
Sat-Nov 23-2013
Oregon
Arizona
ARI +19
Sat-Nov 23-2013
California
Stanford
CAL +31.5
Sat-Nov 23-2013
Kentucky
Georgia
UGA -23.5

There is a general misconception regarding UCLA in college football betting as well. They are known for their productive offense this year, and have averaged 37.0 points per game (23rd in the country), but they’ve also played staggeringly flat against good teams. Against Stanford and Oregon, the Bruins put up just 24 total points. Brent Hundley has 27 total touchdowns as a dual threat quarterback, but he’s also not receiving enough help in general from his teammates. If you bottle up Hundley using speed and smart zone coverage, you can murder the Bruins. Even on their own field.

Arizona State hasn’t had to produce a ton of points in their last few games because they’ve been shutting down opponents defensively, but they have scored as many as 62 this season. Their average of 42.3 points per game is ranked ninth in the country. The combination of a bone cracking defense and a reasonably explosive offense makes the upstart Sun Devils an attractive play as road favorites against the overrated Bruins, who are quickly falling back to earth and will slam in to the ground when they face another strong defensive front this weekend.

College Football Betting Pick – ASU -2.5