The UCLA Bruins have played several huge games against elite programs so far this season, but most of those games have come on their own home floor. This time, the Bruins will head East to play a game at Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee against the Marquette Golden Eagles. UCLA comes into this game with a top-five ranking and plenty of rest, but Marquette will have the bulk of the support from the crowd in this game as they look to move their record at home to 6-0 on the year.
Going into this UCLA Bruins vs. Marquette Golden Eagles matchup, the Bruins have just two road games on their record thus far. And one of those road games was won via forfeit this past week, as UCLA has yet to face any real tests on the road. Here, they will get their first real road test of the season, as Marquette knows that they will likely come out of this week with a top-25 ranking if they can score a home victory over the Bruins.
UCLA Bruins – Going On A Road Trip
UCLA has lost just one of their first eight games this season, with that loss coming to a Gonzaga team that was ranked number one in the country at the time. In their last game, the Bruins got a win by forfeit, as they picked up what will go in the record books as a 2-0 win due to the Huskies’ COVID-19 issues. Here, they will face a much more difficult test on the road, as they face a Marquette team that will not only be able to play, but could beat UCLA.
UCLA certainly has the more explosive offense going into this game, as they are averaging just under 83 points per game on the year. But there will be questions about whether or not the Bruins will come out sharp in this game due to their extended time off in December. The Bruins haven’t played a game since December 1, when they beat Colorado at home, and they will have to get back into the groove in a hurry to avoid an upset.
Expected Line-Up: Jules Bernard, Tyger Campbell, Johnny Juzang, Jaime Jaquez Jr., Myles Johnson
with best odds
Marquette Golden Eagles – Hoping To Hold Home Court
The Marquette Golden Eagles are coming off of a win against the Kansas State Wildcats in their last game, moving them to 8-2 on the season. Marquette has lost just two games this year, with those losses coming against the Wisconsin Badgers and St. Bonaventure Bonnies, who are both top-tier programs this season. In order to avoid a third loss to a strong squad against UCLA, defense will be the real key for Marquette.
Marquette has previously allowed 89 points to a Wisconsin team that has looked downright anemic on offense at other points of this season. With that type of poor defensive performance being within the realm of possibility for Marquette, there is some concern that they will have trouble against the potent offense of UCLA. But home court advantage could be the great equalizer here, as this game should see a robust turnout given the opponent that is coming to Fiserv Forum.
Expected Line-Up: Darryl Morsell, Tyler Kolek, Kameron Jones, Kur Kuath, Justin Lewis
Expert Pick #1 – Marquette +7 @ -115
The first bet to put on this game is Marquette +7 at -115 odds. The Golden Eagles have proven that they can hang in there with tough teams, and should get a boost from UCLA just not playing many road games of import so far this season. The Golden Eagles may not win this game, but they should be able to keep it within a couple of possessions at the end of the day.
Expert Pick #2 – Under 149 @ -110
Our next recommended bet for this game is the under 149 at -110 odds. Yes, UCLA is very efficient on offense, but they are doing some serious travel for a school that rarely leaves the west coast. That combined with the crowd supporting Marquette vocally could see the Bruins fail to score their typical amount and keep the game under the total when the final buzzer sounds.
Expert Pick #3 – UCLA Under 78 Points @ -110
The final bet to place on this contest is the UCLA under 78 points at -110. It is hard to judge just how good or bad UCLA will be on the road without them playing many road games. But all of the factors mentioned above indicate that they will not have as easy a day as many will anticipate in this non-conference contest.
Even if UCLA does win this game on the road to preserve its spot in the top-five, it isn’t going to be pretty. Both teams will have to grind for everything they get here, and a close game that goes under the total should be expected.