The UCLA Bruins take on the Washington Huskies. Check out our college basketball odds series for our UCLA Washington prediction and pick.

The Washington Huskies have been a weird team this season. They showed how athletic and versatile they can be when they defeated Saint Mary’s and Colorado. Yet, they lost to Oregon State on the road and to Cal Baptist on their home floor in Seattle. Is this a good team or a flawed team? We got another taste of the Jekyll and Hyde identity of the Huskies on Friday night against USC. They trailed most of the way, then uncorked a 12-2 run to take a 58-55 lead midway through the second half. Then they didn’t hit a field goal in a span of more than eight minutes and were outscored 25-9 down the stretch to lose 80-67. Washington has these 10- or 15-minute bursts in a game when it looks really good, but for most of a game — a 40-minute canvas — Washington looks like a below-average group. It’s a confounding problem coach Mike Hopkins needs to solve heading into this game against UCLA.

Here are the UCLA-Washington NCAA Basketball Odds, courtesy of FanDuel. 

College Basketball Odds: UCLA-Washington Odds

UCLA Bruins: -9.5 (-118)

Washington Huskies: +9.5 (-104)

Over: 140.5 (-110)

Under: 140.5 (-110)

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Why UCLA Could Cover the Spread

The Washington Huskies have been unreliable this season, as we noted above. The Huskies just can’t seem to play well for more than one-third of a game. For two-thirds of a game, they just don’t have the toughness or the shotmaking. They get small pinches of good production from a lot of players on their roster, but they don’t get their full lineup to play well at the same time. One guy shoots well but others don’t. An opposing defense takes away that one shooter and no one else picks up the slack. This is how Washington breaks down and fails to live up to its talent, which emerges in spots but doesn’t remain a constant driving force for this team.

UCLA is also going to be mad after a poor performance against Washington State on Friday. The Bruins won, but they did not look good. It’s unlikely UCLA will play two straight bad games. The Bruins are too good to keep messing around. They will be ready for this one.

Why Washington Could Cover the Spread

Washington is going to see a UCLA team which is not playing good offense right now. The Bruins struggled against Washington State on Friday night. UCLA had guard Tyger Campbell playing way too much 1-on-1 basketball, freelancing and trying to make plays himself instead of sharing the ball. UCLA’s habits on offense just aren’t good, and when a team falls into bad habits, they don’t immediately improve. UCLA could be in a rut which will take time to resolve. Also keep in mind that Washington plays a lot of zone defense, so the Huskies can show the Bruins a different look compared to most Pac-12 opponents. That could be the change of pace which keeps UCLA confused and prevents the Bruins from busting loose on offense in this game.

Final UCLA-Washington Prediction & Pick

UCLA did win its most recent game against Washington State on Friday, but the game felt almost like a loss, given how poorly the Bruins played on offense. UCLA coach Mick Cronin will have his team ready to play. A strong, focused UCLA performance should give the Bruins a 15-point win.

Final UCLA-Washington Prediction & Pick: UCLA -9.5