NCAAF

UCLA Football Enters Big Ten With Approachable Win Total

Gabriel Santiago
Gabriel Santiago@gps_onthemic
UCLA Football Enters Big Ten With Approachable Win Total

With action on the hardwood taking over the airwaves, college football will be (temporarily) put on the back burner. However, for those gridiron fans who want to get ahead of the game, FanDuel Sportsbook has gone live with 2024 college football win totals!

Moving forward, the UCLA Bruins' football program will no longer compete in the Pac-12. Of course, the coming academic year (2024-25) will be the institution's inaugural campaign as a member of the Big Ten. On top of that, the Bruins recently underwent a sweeping coaching change.

Upon Chip Kelly's resignation (to become offensive coordinator of the Ohio State Buckeyes), UCLA will stay in house for their next head coach. They are turning to alum and former star tailback DeShaun Foster, who has personal experience with excellence in Westwood.

Before spring ball gets up and running, let's dive into UCLA's 2024 regular-season win total odds at FanDuel Sportsbook and take a look at both perspectives -- the over and the under.

All college football odds via FanDuel Sportsbook. Lines may change after this article is published.

UCLA Football Win Total Odds

UCLA Football Over/Under 5.5 Wins

  • Over: -158
  • Under: +128

UCLA 2024 Football Schedule

Date
Opponent
Sat, Aug 31@ Hawai'i
Sat, Sep 14vs. Indiana
Sat, Sept 21@ LSU
Sat, Sep 28vs. Oregon
Sat, Oct 5@ Penn State
Sat, Oct 12vs. Minnesota
Sat, Oct 19@ Rutgers
View Full Table

Why UCLA Could Win Over 5.5 Games (-158)

As noted, Coach Foster taking over HC duties for the Bruins will be the most substantial culture change. He was a star running back for UCLA from 1998-2001 (prior to shining in the NFL), making one Rose Bowl appearance as a player. Foster has served as the Bruins' halfbacks coach since 2017, so he brings both familiarity and continuity.

UCLA will also be returning quarterback Ethan Garbers in 2024. Throughout 2023, Garbers (67.1% completion clip at 8.4 adjusted yards per attempt) proved to be the Bruins' most consistently productive signal-caller. In that same vein, Dante Moore is transferring to the conference rival Oregon Ducks. Moore produced an 11-9 TD-INT ratio behind 6.7 adjusted yards per attempt in one season for UCLA.

Speaking of transfers, players are moving in and out of Westwood. Notably, two solid contributors from the Notre Dame Fighting Irish are joining the Bruins in 2024. On offense, receiver Rico Flores provides both skill and physicality. In the defensive backfield, safety Ramon Henderson also comes over from South Bend. At 6-foot-1, 200 pounds, Henderson has fantastic size and athleticism for his spot.

Transparently, 5.5 wins is not a high bar to leap over (which currently yields -158 odds at FanDuel Sportsbook). Going against an approachable number in the season-long market, the Bruins commence the year with two favorable contests.

UCLA will open the campaign at the Hawaii Warriors. After returning from the Aloha State, the Rose Bowl's home team will host the Indiana Hoosiers. Between those two opposing programs, there were just eight combined victories in 2023. Remember: UCLA went 8-5 last year

Should the Bruins start 2024 on a two-game winning streak, that will provide a quality base for winning over 5.5 games. After IU, UCLA must endure through a three-week gauntlet. Beginning September 28th versus the LSU Tigers in Baton Rouge, the Bruins will then face Oregon before traveling to play the Penn State Nittany Lions.

Even if UCLA goes winless through that daunting stretch, there will be ample time to get to six victories. Still, this market could very well come down to the Bruins' final two games of the regular season. They'll have the luxury of concluding the year in Pasadena, but does that mean UCLA will take care of business against both the USC Trojans and Fresno State Bulldogs?

Why UCLA Could Win Under 5.5 Games (+128)

Earning six wins is not asking for the entire world, but in Power 5 football, nothing can be taken for granted.

The majority of folks around the Bruin community see the recent coaching change from Kelly to Foster as a positive. Quarterback Garbers seems particularly zealous to start the next episode under Foster, but will we see a real improvement on 26.5 PPG for the Bruins' offense? Kelly's group experienced a noticeable dip in production over his final campaign out west.

As alluded to, Moore transferring to Eugene eliminates an ensuing quarterback controversy between him and Garbers. However, Moore was definitively better using his legs. Now that he has the keys to the car, can Garbers come into his own in this spread-option scheme?

On the defense, UCLA is losing one of college football's top gamewreckers to the 2024 NFL Draft. Standing at 6-foot-4, edge rusher Laiatu Latu led the Bruins with 13.0 sacks. He also produced two forced fumbles along with an interception last year. With Latu slated to be a star on Sundays, UCLA will need to replace their best player on that side of the football.

The Bruins were a top defensive side in 2023. With all the shuffling pieces (including conference realignment), I find it unlikely that they hold opponents to the stifling clip of 18.4 PPG for a second consecutive year.

I mentioned previously that UCLA will face a blistering three-week stretch wherein they play LSU, Oregon and Penn State. The Bruins can bounce back from losing all three of those contests, but they must keep from snowballing. In the middle weeks of the season, UCLA must salvage at least two wins through conference games against the Minnesota Golden Gophers, Rutgers Scarlet Knights and Nebraska Cornhuskers.

It seems more likely the Bruins will go over 5.5 wins in 2024 (as exemplified by the under's +128 odds at FanDuel Sportsbook), but the program is also looking to reestablish its football identity.

Of course, that will be just one of many looming changes for UCLA.


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The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author's advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.