UCLA moves close towards PAC-12 title with win against Arizona

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – There was no better way to cap the month of February in College Basketball than with Arizona and UCLA competing in what would become one of the most exciting games of the day. The now first-place and red-hot UCLA Bruins came into this game needing a win to move into first place in the PAC-12. While Arizona was a game back of the lead and needed this win to have a chance at the PAC-12 title. With March on the horizon, what transpired in the last game in February was something that coined the terms Madness. 

The game was controlled pretty much throughout by Arizona, while UCLA was keeping the game in reach. A major factor came through as Arizona Coach Sean Miller got ejected from the game after picking up his second technical foul midway through the second half. Down the stretch, it was Chris Smith who hit the game-tying jumper while Tyger Campbell, who was 0-10 from the floor, hit the go-ahead basket. From there Arizona folded turning it over on three straight possessions, which helped secure a victory. 

This entire season and this game, UCLA was the ones that had not many believers but through that the team overcame adversity. “We were underdogs tonight, and a lot of people still don’t believe in us,” Mick Cronin said postgame. We’ve got to continue to play this way. We cannot change our mentality.”

With this mentality, the Bruins move a half-game up in the loss column for the PAC-12 title. They will play USC next Saturday with a chance to win the PAC-12 regular-season title. For Arizona, at 9-7 they won’t be winning the PAC-12 regular-season title, but they should cap off a successful season with likely wins against both Washington schools next week. 

Bracketology Effect: For Arizona, they remain on the seven-line, which is mostly due to the fact they still rank Top-15 in the NET. UCLA moves into the category labeled “NIT One Seeds.”

Betting Effect: UCLA +3 Under 135.5 

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