- UCLA is a two-point favorite over North Carolina on Friday night in an NCAA Tournament East Region semifinal.
- The winner advances to play Saint Peter’s or Purdue
- A look at the UNC vs UCLA odds and matchup can be found below with a pick
Two programs with a combined 17 national titles square off when #8 seed North Carolina meets #4 UCLA in an NCAA Tournament East Region semifinal at 9:39 p.m. ET Friday at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia.
North Carolina (26-9/18-16-1 ATS) has won eight of its last nine games, including dethroning defending champion Baylor 93-86 in overtime on Saturday in the second round. UCLA (27-7/18-15-1 ATS) rolled to a 72-56 victory over Saint Mary’s the same day for its seventh win in eight games.
UCLA has won 11 championships and North Carolina has six banners.
North Carolina vs UCLA Odds
|North Carolina||+110||+2 (-109)||Over 142.5 (-107)|
|UCLA||-130||-2 (-110)||Under 142.5 (-113)|
Odds as of March 22nd at Barstool Sportsbook.
UCLA is a two-point favorite in a game that will be televised by CBS. As -130 picks on the moneyline, the Bruins have an implied win probability of 56.52%.
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The winner advances to meet Saint Peter’s or Purdue in the March Madness bracket.
North Carolina Betting Outlook
North Carolina is also on a strong roll against the spread, covering in six of its last seven games, including the stirring victory against Baylor. The Tar Heels blew a 25-point lead but hung on to win.
Sophomore guard RJ Davis scored a career-high 30 points, including making 5 of 10 three-point attempts. He also had six assists and five rebounds after scoring just four points in 30 minutes against Marquette in the first round.
— Pat Welter WRAL (@PatrickWelter) March 19, 2022
Davis is averaging 13.5 points and 3.7 assists a game this season.
Brady Manek poured in 26 points and pulled down five boards before being ejected with 10:08 left for a flagrant foul after his three had put the Tar Heels ahead 67-42.
Manek has scored at least 20 points in five of his last six games and in 10 games overall this season. He is scoring 15.1 points and grabbing 5.8 rebounds a game.
Armando Bacot notched his 27th double-double of 2021-22 by finishing with 15 points, 16 rebounds, four assists and three steals. It was his eighth double-double in the last nine games and his sixth game of the season with at least 15 points and 15 rebounds.
Bacot is third in the nation in rebounding with a 12.5 average and his 58.8 field goal percentage ranks 18th. He is also averaging 16.4 points and 1.7 blocked shots.
That time of the year✅ pic.twitter.com/wFWvRMlK0u
— Armando Bacot Jr. (@iget_buckets35) March 16, 2022
Though he fouled out with just five points Saturday, sophomore guard Caleb Love has averages of 15.3 points and 3.7 rebounds.
North Carolina committed 21 turnovers but held Baylor to 34.6% (28 of 81), including 24.3% (9 of 37) from distance.
UCLA Betting Preview
UCLA’s main concern is junior wing Jaime Jacquez Jr.’s health. He left the win over Saint Mary’s with a right ankle injury with 6:58 left and did not return.
Coach Mick Cronin is confident Jacquez will be able to play Friday. The Bruins would certainly miss Jacquez as he is averaging 14.0 points and 5.7 rebounds a game.
Jaime Jacquez Jr. for the PUSH 🙃
Bruins closed -3
— br_betting (@br_betting) February 28, 2020
Jacquez scored 15 points Saturday for his 10th straight game in double figures.
UCLA had an efficient offensive effort against Saint Mary’s, shooting 56.5% (26 of 46) and committing just six turnovers. Jacquez was one of four players to score between 14-16 points.
Junior guard Tyger Campbell led the Bruins with 16 points. Junior guard Johnny Juzang added 14 points and eight rebounds. Senior guard Jules Bernard contributed 14 points, five rebounds and four assists in his eight consecutive double-digit scoring effort.
Johnny Juzang is all smiles. 😀 pic.twitter.com/d5wQKLNR1m
— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) March 20, 2022
Juzang leads UCLA in scoring with a 15.7 average and has Wooden Award odds of +11500.
Bernard is averaging 12.7 points and Campbell is scoring 11.8 points and dished 4.2 assists per game.
North Carolina vs UCLA Prediction
North Carolina has won five in a row in the series, the last victory coming 74-64 during the 2019-20 season in Las Vegas.
Bacot had 15 points and 12 rebounds for North Carolina. UCLA got 16 points from Bernard while Jacquez posted 14 points, 10 rebounds and three steals.
The Tar Heels were 18-8 after a loss to lowly Pittsburgh on Feb. 16 and firmly on the NCAA bubble. Five week later, they are playing as well as anyone and won’t be stopped here.
The Pick: North Carolina ML (+110)
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