Arizona vs. UCLA Odds, Picks, Predictions (11/12/22)

UCLA didn’t have standout running back Zach Charbonnet this past weekend but still managed 50 points. Against a struggling Arizona defense, this weekend could bring another high-scoring game for the Bruins. Arizona has a high-flying offense of its own, but the Wildcats have dropped four consecutive games and don’t look like they’ll be able to reach bowl eligibility in year two under Jedd Fisch. Can UCLA keep building momentum against a struggling team?

Let’s take a look at the odds and make some picks and predictions for this Saturday’s matchup at the Rose Bowl.

Arizona vs. UCLA Prediction & Pick

Arizona’s offense has been fun to watch all season. The defense has not, unless you’re all in on high-scoring games, but the offense has been the reason Arizona has kept some of these games close. The Wildcats lost by 10 or fewer points against USC and Washington in recent weeks but didn’t have the same luck against Oregon or Utah.

This matchup feels like it could play out the way the USC and Washington games did. UCLA’s pass defense is its weakness and should allow Jayden de Laura to keep Arizona’s offense moving. I fully expect UCLA to win this game – the Bruins’ running game has been utterly dominant of late – but a 20+ point win might be a step too far.

Arizona vs. UCLA Odds

UCLA enters as a heavy home favorite at -1250 on the moneyline. The Bruins are favored by 19.5 points. The over/under is set at 77.5 points.

That’s about as high as you’ll see a power-five over/under, but you almost have to be tempted on the over. UCLA’s offense has torn through some of the Pac-12’s inferior teams (and some of the better ones).

It’s not much of a surprise the Bruins are huge favorites, though home-field advantage is never much of a factor for this UCLA program. Arizona faces a very difficult path to winning this game outright, but can a pretty capable offense stay within striking distance of Chip Kelly’s squad.

Arizona vs. UCLA Key Matchups

Zach Charbonnet’s exact injury still hasn’t been revealed, but he was reportedly limited in practice to open the week after missing Saturday’s win over Arizona State. That’s not a great sign for his availability. The good news for the Bruins: They shouldn’t need him to beat Arizona.

UCLA still ran for 402 yards against the Sun Devils, getting huge production out of Kazmeir Allen and Keegan Jones in addition to QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson. Thompson-Robinson hasn’t looked terrific through the air recently, staying under 200 passing yards in his last two games, but he’s shown huge improvement as a passer this season.

While Arizona’s pass defense isn’t any good, the Wildcats’ run defense is even worse, ranking 119th out of 131 FBS teams. UCLA is going to run the ball early and often with or without Charbonnet, and, barring a surprise, they’re going to have a ton of success doing it.

We know UCLA is likely going to score at will. Where it gets interesting is the matchup between Arizona’s passing game and this UCLA defense. UCLA’s run defense has been pretty strong this season, but the pass defense has run into issues against some of the Pac-12’s better offenses.

Arizona has had success passing the ball this season, with transfer QB Jayden de Laura approaching 3,000 yards already. de Laura battled turnover issues early in the season but has cleaned that up lately, throwing for 14 touchdowns and 2 interceptions over his last five games. Arizona has three dangerous targets, including one of the nation’s most consistent receivers in Jacob Cowing.

It’s a lot to ask of de Laura to keep up with UCLA and win this game, especially given his team’s brutal defense, but it feels like the offense might have enough power to prevent this from turning into a total blowout.

Dan is a lifelong sports fan and graduate of Boston University. He’s covered several sports on Instagram since he was 12 and now writes about everything from betting trends to breaking news for Lineups.

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