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NCAA Tournament 2021 – #11 UCLA Bruins (18-6) vs #2 Alabama Crimson Tide (22-4)

Will Tide Depth Swamp Bruins?

Our UCLA vs Alabama pick lists the Crimson Tide as the favorite in this 2021 NCAAM Tournament Sweet 16 East Region game. Alabama is at -6.5 (-110), while the are at +6.5 (-110). In the first round, UCLA beat the #6 BYU Cougars 73-62. In the next round, UCLA was victorious over the #14 Abilene Christian Wildcats 67-47. The Crimson Tide arrives at the Sweet 16, by beating the #15 Iona Gaels 73-62. The Crimson Tide took apart the #10 Maryland Terrapins, 96-77.

The Bruins and Crimson Tide play on Sunday, March 28 at 7:15 pm ET. They’ll tip off at Hinkle Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, IN. Also, make sure you read our other East Region Sweet 16 pick for Sunday, as the #4 Florida State Seminoles and the #1 Michigan Wolverines meet at 5:00 pm ET. That matchup will take place at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, IN

UCLA vs Alabama Pick – Stats

Statistically, the Bruins come to this game with various disadvantages. The Crimson Tide are better when it comes to scoring (79.7 to 73.1), rebounding (40.5 to 35.0), blocks (4.3 to 2.7), and steals (8.6 to 4.9). However, UCLA is allowing just 63.0 PPG, while Alabama is allowing opponents 66.0 PPG. The Bruins also possess a higher field-goal success rate, 46.3% to 43.5%. UCLA is a bit better on three-pointer, 36.7% to 35.1%. Both teams are hitting 72% of their free throws.

Key Players

For UCLA, guard Tyger Campbell is the primary setup man, tossing 5.4 APG while scoring 10.1 PPG. Three guards, Johnny Juzang, Jaime Jaquez Jr., and Jules Bernard, are grabbing a total of 15,2 RPG. Juzang leads the team in points per game with 15.1. Jaquez is hitting for 12.2 PPG, while Bernard is scoring 10.2 PPG. All four players are 40-plus-percentage shooters. Forwards Cody Riley and Jalen Hill are scoring 10.0 and 6.1 PPG and grabbing 5.4 and 5.5 RPG.

Alabama is deep and has a productive starting five, and also a very productive bench. Jaden Shackelford leads the team with 14.3 PPG. Also, guards Jahvon Quinerly and John Petty Jr. are each good for close to 13 PPG. Quinerly is averaging 3.2 APG, while Petty is taking down 5.2 RPG. Also, in the backcourt, Joshua Primo adds 8.2 PPG and 3.4 RPG. In front, Herbert Jones and Jordan Bruner are primary contributors. Jones is averaging 11.3 PPG and 6.5 RPG, while Bruner is good for 5.7 PPG and 4.0 APG.

UCLA vs Alabama Pick – Final Thoughts

In our UCLA vs Alabama pick, we find that the Crimson Tides’ play under the rim gives them a major advantage. Plus, they are deep at guard and in front. We like the Crimson Tide at -6.5 (-110). We think they have plenty of power and D to cover the spread.

#11 UCLA Bruins vs #2 Alabama Crimson Tide

Alabama Crimson Tide at -6.5 (-110)


Paul has been writing about sports betting and sports for more than a decade, offering picks on the NFL, MLB, NHL, and NBA, as well as on college sports and European football. He's written thousands of season and post-season previews, innumerable articles on sports betting strategies, and various books on sports and sports betting.

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