Today’s Best NCAAB Player Props Bets: New Players Scramble UCLA vs. USC Rematch

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Tyger Campbell #10 of the UCLA Bruins handles the ball against Courtney Ramey #0 of the Arizona Wildcats during the second half of the NCAA game at McKale Center on January 21, 2023 in Tucson, Arizona. Christian Petersen/Getty Images/AFP

The Pac-12 highlights the college basketball schedule for the last Thursday in January, with the conference’s two ranked teams both in action on the road. No. 8 UCLA heads to crosstown rival USC for a rematch of a tight game from earlier this month, while No. 6 Arizona heads north to face Washington State. 

Let’s see what the NCAAB odds can tell us about tonight’s college basketball games.

UCLA Bruins vs. USC Trojans

Thursday, January 26, 2023 – 09:00 PM EST at Galen Center

Rematch Features Returnees 

No. 6 UCLA meets Southern Cal for the second time this month, as the teams wrap up this season’s home-and-home series in a three-week span. UCLA escaped with a 60-58 win over USC at Pauley Pavilion on January 5. USC battled back from an 18-point deficit to take a late lead, but UCLA scored the game’s final four points to escape with a win. Now the Bruins hit the road to head to USC.  

The game promises to have a different look than the first matchup because both teams have added a key player to the mix. USC has the biggest addition, literally, with 7-foot-5 freshman Vincent Iwuchukwu. The big man missed the start of the season after suffering a cardiac arrest over the summer.

Remarkably, Iwuchukwu has been cleared to play and has seen time in each of the Trojans’ last four games. He’s being worked into the rotation slowly, receiving double figures in minutes in only the last two contests. His last time out, he scored in double figures for the first time, with 12 points and five rebounds.  

UCLA, meanwhile, is expected to get a player back from injury. Guard Amari Bailey hasn’t played since Dec. 21. The freshman playmaker has missed seven games with a foot injury, but coach Mick Cronin says Bailey is “close” to a return.  

The Picks 

Iwuchukwu’s presence has an impact on both teams. As Cronin said, “they’re a different team with Vince in there.” It should open things up from outside for USC’s shooters, which could mean a big night for Drew Peterson, who has hit 6 of his last 13 three-point attempts. He’s also scoring 1.9 ppg more since Iwuchukwu hit the floor.  

It could also mean a long night for 6-foot-11 UCLA center Adem Bona, who will be tasked with guarding Iwuchukwu and trying to get his shot off over a player a half-foot taller than him.  

Amari Bailey’s impact is twofold, with him creating shots but also calling his own number, which takes shots away from teammates. Two of the Bruins’ top scorers have seen opposite effects from his injury.

Jaime Jaquez saw his scoring drop without Bailey getting him the ball, from 17 ppg before Bailey’s injury to 14.4 after. Look for him to get back to his old form. Tyger Campbell, meanwhile saw his scoring go up from 13.3 ppg to 14.6, as his minutes (by 5.7), shot attempts (by 0.7) and three-point attempts (by 0.6) all went up with Bailey out.  

Find these player props at the Top-Rated Sportsbooks:

  • NCAAB Pick: Drew Peterson over 13.5 points (-115)
  • NCAAB Pick: Adem Bona under 5.5 rebounds (-115)
  • NCAAB Pick: Adem Bona under 8.5 points (-115)
  • NCAAB Pick: Tyger Campbell under 13.5 points (-115)
  • NCAAB Pick: Jaime Jaquez over 15.5 points (-115)
  • NCAAB Pick: Jaime Jaquez over 0.5 made three-pointers (-115)

Californians can make their NCAAB bets at these California betting sites instead.

Arizona Wildcats vs. Washington State Cougars

Thursday, January 26, 2023 - 11:00 PM EST at Beasley Coliseum

Rematch in Pullman 

Arizona heads to Washington State to try to get some revenge in another Pac-12 rematch game. The two teams met in Arizona on Jan. 7 and Washington State pulled an upset, winning on the road by double digits, 74-61. The Cougars were led by 6-foot-11 sophomore Mouhamed Gueye, who had 14 rebounds, six of them offensive, and 24 points in the win.  

Gueye has been battling a hamstring injury in recent days, however. He was limited to 20 minutes in Washington State’s last game, missing all seven shot attempts and being held scoreless. Coach Kyle Smith confirmed that the hamstring was bothering the big man, although Gueye has been cleared to play on Thursday.  

The Picks 

Gueye’s hamstring could mean a big night for 6-foot-11 Arizona junior Azuolas Tubelis. He had 29 points and 14 rebounds, seven offensive, in the first game, and that was with Gueye battling him in the paint and putting Tubelis in foul trouble—he would finish with four. Tubelis could find a little more room to roam if Gueye plays reduced minutes or struggles to keep up on one bad wheel, that's why we're taking him for our NCAAB picks.  

Find these player props at the Top-Rated Sportsbooks:

  • NCAAB Pick: Azuolas Tubelis over 18.5 points (-115)
  • NCAAB Pick: Azuolas Tubelis over 9.5 rebounds (-115)

*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.