Things are heating up for Chip Kelly in more ways than one. Not only are his UCLA Bruins facing the red-hot Oklahoma Sooners as a 23.5-point underdog on the current college football odds in Week 3, his lack of wins since taking over the program have put Kelly on an uncomfortably warm seat. It’s nothing a major upset can’t fix, but the Bruins haven’t won a game outright when getting 20 or more points on the closing line since at least 2002. The Sooners look to continue their early season dominance on Saturday, September 14, when they visit the Rose Bowl for the first time since the 2005 season. The game can be seen on FOX at 8 p.m. ET.
College Football Odds at BookMaker.eu
Oklahoma Sooners -23.5
UCLA Bruins +23.5
Oklahoma at UCLA Odds Analysis
The line hit the board at Oklahoma -19.5 after the Week 2 results were in, and it was quickly wagered to -23.5. A 4-point swing is pretty drastic, but after watching last week’s games it’s not a surprise. The Bruins lost for the first time ever to San Diego State, 23-14, as a 7.5-point home favorite, and fans at the Rose Bowl were not pleased. In last year’s meeting in Norman, UCLA covered the 31-point spread in a 49-21 loss. We also saw a rise in the total with the number going from its opening 66.5 to its current 73.5 with plenty of public action on the over.
I guess Lincoln Riley made the correct decision. Remember before the season started he didn’t commit to making Jalen Hurts his starting quarterback. Maybe it was a coaching ploy to get the most out of his Alabama transfer. If it was, Riley is coach of the year. In any case, there’s no doubt as to who the starter is now. We can’t take too much from OU’s 70-14 win over South Dakota last week. Facing an overmatched FCS foe the Sooners were expected to romp and they did, covering the 46.5-point closing line. And most of the regulars, including Hurts, hit the bench early, which doesn’t bode well for the Bruins.
Kelly’s return to the college ranks hasn’t gone as planned. The Bruins lost at home to San Diego State last week as a 7.5-point favorite and they’ve started 0-2 in consecutive seasons for the first time since the early 1940s. In Kelly’s two seasons the Bruins are 3-11 straight up and 5-8-1 against the spread. Despite the issues, Kelly isn’t panicking. It wouldn’t do any good anyway. The young Bruins are making strides but they need to be more consistent on offense. It’s strange to say considering what Kelly did in Oregon, but UCLA ranks 119th or worse in the FBS in scoring, rushing and total offense. They’ve also played below the closing total in their first two outings.
The total rose dramatically to 73.5, which means the Sooners will have to score 59.5 points for a push. They can do it with their explosive offense, but they aren’t facing Houston or South Dakota making the task more difficult. The Bruins scored exactly 14 points in each of their first two games and they lack the big plays we’re accustomed to seeing in Kelly’s offense. But don’t rest on this group. They are young and gaining experience, and they don’t want to be wiped out of their own building. Dorian Thompson-Robinson is a smooth player and the offense will get more productive, just not enough to upset OU.
OU was ranked No. 6 and unbeaten when the teams met in Norman last season. With Thompson-Robinson making his first collegiate start in place of injured Will Speight, the Bruins never got on track and were thumped 49-21. UCLA got a back door cover when DTR threw a touchdown pass with just over three minutes left in the fourth quarter. The Bruins were 31-point underdogs on the college football betting line. The teams cashed the over on a closing total of 66 and I expect to see some offense from both sides on Saturday.
BookMaker offers play-by-play betting odds for live sporting events every day! The user-friendly wagering interface on your smartphone provides an easy way to place bets on the go. Mobile betting lines are updated by the minute, so click here to start gambling on thrilling live action at BookMaker Sportsbook!