UCLA Bruins Odds to Win the 2015 College Football National Championship
by George Monroy - 7/15/2014
The last time the UCLA Bruins won a college football National Championship, Dwight Eisenhower was president. The team has been a NCAA powerhouse in nearly every colligate sport and even produced a few great football seasons along the way, but the program has still not participated in a BCS National Championship Game and has made only one BCS bowl game appearance since 1998.
However, this year UCLA is looking to move the program in a new direction. The Bruins will be entering the upcoming college football season with championship aspirations and are currently on a short list of legitimate national title contenders. Third-year head coach Jim L. Mora hopes to improve on last season's promising 10-3 year and parlay 2013's success into a deep postseason run. Let's take a closer look at UCLA's 2015 national tile odds with predictions and analysis.
UCLA Odds to Win the 2015 National Championship Story Lines
UCLA will be returning its redshirt junior quarterback and Heisman Trophy candidate, Brett Hundley, for the 2014 season. The quarterback's presence on the team makes them one of the top candidates to qualify for the BCS playoff tournament next year as Hundley threw for over 6,500 yards during his first two seasons behind center.
Last season the Bruins opened the year with a dominant start, wining their first five games by double-digit margins, but they eventually cooled down when back-to-back road losses against top-ranked Stanford and Oregon essentially ended the school's national title hopes.
UCLA will have the exact same problems in 2014. The school is a legitimate title contender, but its tougher-than-normal schedule in a tight Pac-12 race may be the biggest hindrance to its championship hopes. The Bruins open the year with a road matchup against Virginia and then will face their first test of the season two weeks later when they host Texas.
UCLA will also face Oregon on the road during its sixth game of the season and USC and Stanford during its final two games to close out the year. The team, however, is an experienced squad with talented players at its skill positions, and one loss may still be enough to be invited to the BCS playoff in 2015.
UCLA 2015 National Championship Odds and Trends
UCLA is currently receiving the sixth-best title odds at +1400, according to Sportsbook.ag. Hundley is also receiving Top 10 Heisman Trophy winner odds at +1800, and the entire squad is receiving a "will they compete in the playoff semifinal" prop odds with the "no" currently being a massive favorite at -800.
Last season UCLA produced a solid ATS record with a 9-4 mark, going 5-2 at home and 4-2 on the road. The squad produced a 6-7 totals mark but played to scoring extremes from week to week. UCLA managed to go "over" in a whopping six of seven home games and "under" in all six road games. Overall, the team produced an average combined score of 60 points.
UCLA Odds to Win the 2015 College Football National Championship Predictions
UCLA's schedule will be its biggest asset and hindrance during the 2015 season. If the squad was able to get through the year undefeated or with one loss on its record, it would have a strong claim for the No. 1 ranking in the nation or at the very least a spot in the national title tournament. The trouble, however, is actually getting through that gauntlet of tough Pac-12 teams with only one loss.
Oregon and USC have national title hopes of their own, while Stanford and Arizona State promise to be very good, ranked schools during the 2014 season. Many experts already believe UCLA's title chance to be overrated, The Bruins will be good, but unfortunately "good" will not be enough to reach the national title game. Expected UCLA to have another three-loss season but not make the BCS tournament.
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Read more articles by George Monroy
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