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Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 13:45 PM

UCLA vs. BYU Predictions, Odds, Preview


Mar. 20, 2021
Thom Cunningham
NCAA BK Expert
VegasInsider.com

UCLA vs. BYU Predictions

UCLA is coming off a huge comeback win against Michigan State, covering the spread and going OVER as well. The latter typically holds true for UCLA, going OVER in 16 of 28 games this season. BYU is split on the O/U, and typically covers the spread more times than not.

It's tough to ignore the beating BYU took at the hands of USC earlier this, another Pac-12 team. UCLA doesn't cover the spread particularly well, but won as the underdog in the First Four game and are the better roster entering this game. Take UCLA to cover and go OVER the point total, as the Bruins should earn your betting conviction over BYU in this one.

  • Score Prediction: UCLA 72 BYU 69
  • Best Bets - Side: UCLA +4.5
  • Best Bets - Total: OVER 140

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UCLA vs. BYU Betting Odds

Line Moves

  • Spread: UCLA +4.5
  • Total: OVER 140
  • Money-Line: BYU -175 UCLA +155

Odds to Win NCAA Tournament

Odds to Win East Region

Odds Subject to Change

First Round Predictions

Saturday's Early Action - Mar. 20
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12
4
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3
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8
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1
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5
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Handicapping UCLA vs. BYU

BYU is gaining public trust, as the line has shot form -2.5 to -4.5 in favor of the Cougars. This is a bit concerning considering UCLA is the better team, and coming off a victory in which it was the underdog. UCLA is now 3-3 on the ATS as the underdog, covering in two straight games as the underdog (covered against USC on Mar. 6).

UCLA has also gone OVER the point total in five of its last seven games, and two straight. UCLA has only seen the point total go OVER in three straight games once this season however. BYU has failed to cover the spread in two of its last three games as the favorite (failed against Pepperdine and San Francisco.

  • Region: East
  • Matchup: 6 vs. 11
  • Venue: Hinkle Fieldhouse
  • Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Date: Mar. 20, 2021
  • TV-Time: CBS - 9:40 p.m. (ET)

Handicapping Resources: March Madness Central | NCAA Consensus Picks

Betting Stats & Analysis - UCLA Bruins

Straight Up - SU, Against the Spread - ATS, Over-Under (O/U)

UCLA was able to overcome foul issues with Cody Riley, already down both Chris Smith and Jalen Hill. The injury to Johnny Juzang is one to monitor, going down with a knee injury against Michigan State.

Injuries are nothing new with this club, as Mick Cronin has done an excellent job mixing and matching multiple lineups. If Juzang is out, the UCLA odds and point total will likely not match. His status is essential for this game, as its unlikely the Bruins can push through missing not one, not two but now three huge impact players.

They have depth though, and hit 37.2% of three-pointers which ranks 41st nationally. The Bruins still have the offensive weapons to touch 70 points and possibly cover a spread that continues to grow. If Juzang is out though, the Bruins might be worth fading.

Seed: 11
Conference: Pac-12
Bid: At-large

  • SU: 18-9
  • ATS: 13-14
  • O/U: 16-11
  • Current Form (Last 5): 1-4 SU, 2-3 ATS, 3-2 O/U
  • Notable Wins: Colorado, Oregon State, Arizona (x2)
  • PS/G: 73.3 (120th)
  • PA/G: 68.9 (135th)
  • Off Rtg: 108.5 (55th)
  • Def Rtg: 102 (221st)

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Betting Stats & Analysis - BYU Cougars

The Cougars Enter this game scoring 78.7 points per game, another reason the OVER seems likely. That average ranks 35th nationally, featuring three seniors who average a double-digit point total.

Much like UCLA, BYU can hit the three-pointer with a 37.8% that ranks 24th in the nation. BYU also hits 55% of their two-pointers and 48.2% of their field goals overall (ranks 24th nationally). They also average 16.6 assists per game (ranks 17th nationally) and 29.9 defensive rebounds per game (ranks fifth nationally).

The weakness is getting to three free throw line, where BYU only attempts 16.4 per game that ranks 264th. If BYU isn't hitting their jump shots then scoring will become difficult against a pretty decent defense in UCLA. Assuming BYU does struggle to score, they should still eclipse 60 points at minimum.

Seed: 6
Conference: WCC
Bid: At-large

  • SU: 20-6
  • ATS: 14-8-3
  • O/U: 12-12-1
  • Current Form (Last 5): 4-1 SU, 3-2 ATS, 4-1 O/U
  • Notable Wins: San Diego State, Utah State
  • PS/G: 78.7 (35th)
  • PA/G: 68.5 (118th)
  • Off Rtg: 110.1 (36th)
  • Def Rtg: 95.7 (69th)

First Round Predictions

Saturday's Late Action - Mar. 20
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8
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Key Players to Watch

With Juzang possibly out, watch for UCLA to lean heavily on three players - one already mentioned in Riley. Tyger Campbell is typically a pass-first player, but hit multiple big shots against Michigan State. Also eye Jaime Jaquez, the most consistent scorer for UCLA all season and hitting a career-high against the Spartans.

Alex Barcello is one of three seniors to average a double-digit point total for BYU, also providing nearly five boards and five dimes per game. Brandon Averette and Matt Haarms are the other notable seniors, with Haarms listed at 7'3" but only snagging 4.8 rebounds per game.

  • UCLA - Tyger Campbell
  • UCLA - Jaime Jaquez
  • BYU - Alex Barcello (15.9 PPG, 4.7 RPG, 4.5 APG)
  • BYU - Brandon Averette (11.5 PPG)

March Madness Records & Trends

UCLA Bruins

  • All-Time Record: 106-42
  • Last Appearance: 2018
  • Deepest Run: Champion (1995)

-- UCLA has won four of its last seven NCAA Tournament games.
-- UCLA has reached the Sweet 16 in three of its last six NCAA Tournament appearances.
-- UCLA has failed to cover the spread in 11 of its last 14 games.
-- UCLA has gone UNDER the point total in five of its last six games after going OVER the point total the game prior.

BYU Cougars

  • All-Time Record: 15-32
  • Last Appearance: 2015
  • Deepest Run: Sweet 16 (2011)

-- BYU has lost its first game in two straight NCAA Tournament appearances.
-- BYU has lost three of its last four NCAA Tournament games.
-- BYU has covered the spread in seven of its last nine games when playing on the road.
-- BYU has gone OVER the point total in four of its last five games.

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