No. 12 California is the lower seed, but they'll be looking to pull off an upset over No. 5 UNLV for their supporters on Thursday as those schools meet on the March Madness betting board at the books.
Since 2002, however, UNLV has a record of 4-1 both SU and ATS against California, and they're the slight favorites on the college basketball lines for the matchup. The teams combined to go 20-38 on the OVER/UNDER for totals bettors this season.
UNLV battles the Golden Bears, currently sitting with a 20-11 mark (12-15-2 ATS). The OVER/UNDER records, always important for totals bettors, are 10-20 for the Rebels and 10-18 for the Golden Bears.
The visitors opened as 3-point underdogs in this one at most sportsbooks tracked at Odds Shark, including . The total was set to open a bit later (check out GTbets.eu for the latest situation(.
Power Rankings / Prediction:
The Rebels - Golden Bears odds would favor the Rebels if the lines were set according to our power ranks. UNLV is rated No. 7 in the current Odds Shark poll, while California is at No. 61. Mathematical models based on recent stats and predictive formulas point to a 75-70 win for the Rebels.
How They Match Up:
In the paint, the rebound battle will feature UNLV's No. 6-rated squad against California's No. 58-rated roster. And in long-range shooting, UNLV rates No. 128 in the country with 6.5 per game, while their foes tonight rank No. 337 nationally with 4 per match.
Defensively, California features the nation's No. 103-rated defense on the road, allowing 66.5 points per game. UNLV, meanwhile, comes in at No. 88 nationally in scoring at home.
In their last action, California was a 79-69 loser at home against Utah. They failed to cover the 8-point spread as favorites. California got 26 points from Justin Cobbs on the way to a 79-69 loss against Utah on Thursday at MGM Grand Garden Arena.
Last time out for UNLV, they were a 63-56 loser as they battled New Mexico at home. They failed to cover in the match as a 2.5-point favorite. UNLV got 19 points from Bryce Dejean-Jones but lost anyway, 63-56, to New Mexico on Saturday at Thomas & Mack Center.
California Golden Bears Trends:
When playing on Thursday are 4-6
After playing Utah are 4-2
After a loss are 6-4
UNLV Rebels Trends:
When playing on Thursday are 9-1
After playing New Mexico are 7-3
After a loss are 8-2
A few Golden Bears at Rebels trends to consider:
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of UNLV's last 5 games
UNLV is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games when playing California
UNLV is 7-2 SU in its last 9 games
UNLV is 7-15 ATS in its last 22 games