USC Trojans at UCLA Bruins Odds, Trends, Predictions

November 19, 8:00 PM EST

Betting Odds

Point Spread: 
USC -2/UCLA +2

It's been a while since the USC-UCLA game meant something, but they'll play for more than the Victory Bell Saturday afternoon at the Rose Bowl. The Trojans sit on the outskirts of the College Football Playoff, and a PAC-12 championship might get 'em in. The Bruins, meanwhile, stumbled last week but still harbor hope of a conference championship game berth for themselves. The line on this game indicates it should be close. Which way are we going here for our free USC/UCLA pick?

USC-UCLA Betting Odds

This week's college football betting lines opened Southern Cal as a 2.5-point favorite over UCLA, with an over/under of right around 74. Early betting action dipped that spread to -2 and bumped that total to 75.5.

USC-UCLA College Football Betting Preview

The Trojans ride a three-game winning streak into Saturday after disposing of Colorado last Saturday 55-17. USC, favored by 34 points, actually trailed the Buffaloes 3-2 well into the second quarter, then scored 24 points in 10 minutes to lead 26-3 into the locker room. The Trojans allowed Colorado to get within 26-10 in the third quarter but scored touchdowns on three straight possessions to pull away for the victory and the cover. Southern Cal out-gained the Buffaloes 531-259. The Trojans have now out-gained nine of their ten opponents this season - the only one they didn't was Utah - and out-rushed each of their last eight foes. USC started 3-0 ATS this season, but it's only 3-4 ATS its last seven times out because, in part, the lines got a little steeper and, in part, thanks to some prevent defense. At 7-1 in conference play, the Trojans lead the PAC-12 by a half-game over both Oregon and Utah. But Southern Cal's only loss came against the Utes. Also, at 9-1 overall, USC sits at No. 7 in both this week's AP Top 25 and the CFP rankings. The Bruins, meanwhile, took a tough loss last week, 34-28, at home against Arizona. UCLA, favored by 20 points, fell behind 14-0 in the first quarter, battled back to a 14-14 tie but trailed 21-14 at the half. The Bruins then rallied to lead 28-24 with 10 minutes left, gave up the next 10 points to fall back down, drove late inside Wildcats territory but came up empty, just missing on a final desperation pass in the back of the end zone. UCLA produced 465 yards of offense, including 220 on the ground, but gave up 436 yards of Arizona offense and lost time of possession by a 34:26 split. The Bruins have now out-gained nine of their ten opponents this season and out-rushed eight of their ten foes. At 5-2 in conference play, UCLA sits in fourth place in the PAC-12, one game behind Oregon and Utah in the battle for second place - which gets you in the conference championship game. The Bruins own a win over the Utes but a loss to the Ducks, so they need a couple of victories to finish their slate and a little help. But they're still alive. These two teams have played five common opponents so far this season; Arizona, Arizona State, Colorado, Stanford, and Utah. UCLA played those foes to 4-1 both SU and ATS and +123 yards per game, USC to 4-1 SU, 3-2 ATS, and +112 YPG. On the injury front, USC just lost leading rusher Travis Dye (884 yards this season) to a knee situation.

USC-UCLA Recent History

The Trojans beat the Bruins in five of six meetings from 2015-20, but last year UCLA piled up 609 yards of total offense and beat USC at the Coliseum 62-33.

College Football Betting Trends

In games involving two AP Top 25 teams this season, the higher-ranked squads are 22-18 SU but 16-23 ATS.

Totals Report

  • The Overs are 7-3 in Trojans games this season which are averaging 67 total points.
  • The Overs are 7-3 in Bruins games which are averaging 66 points.
  • The Overs are 4-0 over the last four meetings between these teams, which averaged a very healthy 81 points.
We give UCLA a slight edge on offense because it's a little more balanced and USC just lost a key guy to injury. We also give the Bruins a slight edge on defense because they're a little better against the run. Also, we expect a bounce-back effort from UCLA this week after getting caught napping last week. We're betting on the Bruins Saturday.
Free Pick: 
Take UCLA +2