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Off-The-Court Issues Could Play A Factor in UCLA vs GT

As has become tradition, a Pac-12 team is opening its college basketball season in China. Only this time it has received plenty of media attention. Three UCLA players – freshmen LiAngelo Ball, Cody Riley and Jalen Hill – all found themselves arrested for shoplifting this past Tuesday. The Bruins will need to leave that off-the-court drama where it belongs when they take on an embattled Georgia Tech squad Friday.

Shark Bites
  • UCLA is 1-5 ATS in its last 6 games as favorite.
  • Georgia Tech is 12-4 ATS in its last 16 games as an underdog.
  • The total has gone UNDER in 7 of UCLA’s last 9 games.

Not to be outdone, a story was published on Tuesday that alleged Georgia Tech head coach Josh Pastner knew about players receiving impermissible benefits. Though Pastner reported the violations, the report accuses the coach of failing to report them as soon as he became aware of them.

Those benefits led to Pastner suspending starters Josh Okogie and Tadric Jackson indefinitely. Okogie and Jackson were first and third on the team in scoring last season, meaning there is a big hole for the Yellow Jackets to fill. Luckily, stud Ben Lammers will still be manning the middle after averaging 14.2 points, 9.2 rebounds and 3.4 blocks per game last season.

UCLA was not expecting to lean on any of the suspended freshmen but still has plenty of holes to fill. The Bruins need to figure out how they are going to replace the losses of TJ Leaf, Lonzo Ball, Bryce Alford and Isaac Hamilton. The team will lean heavily on junior guard Aaron Holiday to contribute early after he took a back seat to his peers last season.

Opening Odds & Computer Pick

Betting fans looking to side with the UCLA Bruins to cover the point spread in this one found them as 8.5-point favorites earlier in the day. Watch for line moves and updates at Bovada before game time.

Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets vs UCLA Bruins Matchup

Team Betting Records & Power Rankings

The UCLA Bruins finished at 31-5 (17-19 ATS) last season. By comparison, the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets were 21-16 (20-12 ATS). Looking to bet on the total points scored? UCLA was 17-16-3 OU, and Georgia Tech was 12-19-1 OU.

This game puts the Bruins, most recently No. 12 in the OddsShark power rankings, up against the Yellow Jackets, who rated No. 291 in the latest survey.

Statistical Matchup

Offensively, the game matches up UCLA's No. 2 nationally ranked offense (89.81 points per game) last season against a Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets defense that was No. 43 at 66.81 PPG. The UCLA Bruins averaged 52.16% from the field, more than the Yellow Jackets managed during the season (43.77% on average).

Recent Outings Betting Recap

Georgia Tech was run off the court by the Horned Frogs as TCU routed them 88-56 at Madison Square Garden in the NIT championship game.

The Bruins got 17 points from TJ Leaf, but it was Kentucky that prevailed in an 86-75 final at FedExForum in the NCAA Sweet 16.

Betting Trends
  • Georgia Tech is 5-1 ATS in its last 6 games
  • Georgia Tech is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games
  • The total has gone UNDER in 7 of Georgia Tech's last 10 games
  • UCLA is 1-5 ATS in its last 6 games
  • UCLA is 12-2 SU in its last 14 games
  • The total has gone UNDER in 7 of UCLA's last 9 games

Next Betting Matchups

Georgia Tech home to Bethune-Cookman, Sunday, November 19
UCLA at Central Arkansas, Wednesday, November 15