The Bruins have already locked up the regular season Pac-12 title, but they may need to beat the Sun Devils to improve their stock in March.
With the regular season coming to a close, the Bruins will have to fend off the Sun Devils in order to keep their home winning streak alive and boost their resume ahead of the NCAA tournament.
WHO: UCLA vs. Arizona State
DATE: Thursday, March 2
TIME: 6:05 p.m. PT
LOCATION: Pauley Pavilion, Los Angeles, CA
TV: ESPN – Roxy Bernstein (play-by-play), Corey Williams (analyst)
STREAMING: fuboTV (Start your free trial)
RADIO: AM 1150, Sirius Ch. TBD, SXM App TBD – Josh Lewin (play-by-play), Tracy Murray (analyst)
SPREAD: UCLA -11.5 (-118), Arizona State +11.5 (-110)*
MONEY LINE: UCLA -901, Arizona State, +500*
OVER/UNDER: O 133.5 (-110), U 133.5 (-118)*
UCLA came in at No. 4 in the most recent AP Poll and No. 4 in the USA Today Coaches Poll, and is currently No. 4 in the NET Rankings, No. 2 in the KenPom, No. 4 in the T-Rank and No. 4 in the BPI. Arizona State did not appear in either the AP Poll or Coaches Poll, and is currently No. 63 in the NET, No. 63 in the KenPom, No. 71 in the T-Rank and No. 70 in the BPI.
According to ESPN’s Joe Lunardi, UCLA is projected to be the No. 2 seed in the West Region for the NCAA tournament, while Arizona State is a No. 11 seed in his Last Four In.
The Bruins were the heavy favorite to win the Pac-12 this season, earning the No. 1 spot in the preseason media poll with 26 first-place votes. The Sun Devils, on the other hand, came in at No. 7. UCLA won the regular season conference title last weekend, while Arizona State is currently in fourth place.
UCLA is led by coach Mick Cronin, who is in his fourth season with the program. Cronin boasts an 93-34 record since arriving in Westwood and a 458-205 record as a head coach overall, including his previous stints at Murray State and Cincinnati.
The Bruins are currently 25-4, including an 16-2 record in Pac-12 play. Following a winless weekend in Las Vegas in November, UCLA rattled off 14 wins in a row, including victories over Maryland, Kentucky, USC and Arizona State. The streak came to an end with back-to-back road losses against Arizona and USC, but the Bruins have since recovered by winning eight in a row over Washington, Washington State, Oregon State, Oregon, Stanford, Cal, Utah and Colorado.
UCLA is averaging 73.7 points per game while allowing 59.7 points per game, which rank No. 131 and No. 6 in the country, respectively. The Bruins have the No. 22 adjusted offense and No. 2 adjusted defense in the KenPom. Their 16.2 turnovers forced per game and their 10.2 turnovers per game both rank inside the top 20 in the country.
Guard/forward Jaime Jaquez Jr. leads UCLA with 17.0 points and 8.0 rebounds per game. Guard Jaylen Clark is averaging 13.0 points, 6.1 rebounds and 2.6 steals per game, while point guard Tyger Campbell is averaging 12.5 points and 4.7 assists per game. Freshmen Amari Bailey, Adem Bona and Dylan Andrews, meanwhile, have each emerged as secondary options alongside veteran sharpshooter David Singleton.
Arizona State is led by coach Bobby Hurley, who is in his eighth season with the Sun Devils. Hurley has gone to three NCAA tournaments across his 10 seasons as a head coach at the Division I level, and he has a 180-129 career record including his stint at Buffalo.
Although Arizona State opened the year 11-1, that one loss was to Texas Southern, and they lost again to San Francisco a few days after entering the AP Poll at No. 25. The Sun Devils had a four-game winning streak early on in Pac-12 play, only to follow it up with a four-game losing streak, but their tight win at Arizona on Feb. 25 made them 4-1 in their last five, 20-9 overall and 11-7 against conference opponents.
Arizona State is averaging 71.2 points per game while allowing 67.2 points per game, which rank No. 189 and No. 94 in the country, respectively. The Sun Devils have the No. 116 adjusted offense and No. 32 adjusted defense in the KenPom. Arizona State ranks No. 18 in the country with 5.0 blocks per game, and their 37.6 rebounds per game rank No. 43.
The Sun Devils don’t appear to be missing suspended forward Marcus Bagley, with guards Desmond Cambridge and DJ Horne averaging 13.9 and 11.8 points per game, respectively, on high-volume 3-point shooting in his absence. Guards Devan Cambridge and Frankie Collins are also averaging double digit points per game, while 7-footer Warren Washington leads the way with 6.7 rebounds and 1.9 blocks per game.
UCLA is 73-24 against Arizona State all-time, and 5-2 since Cronin took over in Westwood. The Bruins have won 23 home games in a row, and have not lost in front of fans at Pauley Pavilion since January 2020.
Of the last 11 times Arizona State came to Pauley Pavilion, UCLA lost just once.
*Odds via SI Sportsbook