The UCLA Bruins (8-1) are set to face the Prairie View A&M Panthers (2-7) today in Westwood. After a loss a week ago at Missouri, the Bruins are looking to right the ship before it goes completely off-course, especially when they sail in murky waters of no-defense.
TV: Pac-12 Networks
Location: Pauley Pavilion, Los Angeles, CA
Tip-off: 5 p.m. PT/8 p.m. ET
Preview: The PVAM Panthers are having a hard time this season and it will not get any easier as they roll into famed Pauley Pavilion with only two wins. Their last game played at BYU is one that the Panthers want to forget as they lost, 100-52.
PVAM are only scoring 73.7 points per game and if you look at their shooting percentage (.435) you can see why. PVAM cannot exactly get it done around the floor either as they are 299th in the nation in rebounds (32.7 rpg) and 228th in assists (12.1 apg).
Their best all-around weapon, Montrael Scott, is a 6’3’” sophomore guard that is first in scoring (13.7 ppg) and rebounding (4.4 rpg) and second on the team in assists (2.3 apg). Only three other players are averaging over ten points per game.
We know what the Bruins can do…score when they are playing as a unit. Jordan Adams is still leading the offense with 21.6 ppg as well as steals with 3.3 spg. The next in scoring is the freshman highlight reel, Zach LaVine, who is getting 14.2 ppg off the bench. Top that off with 6’9” point guard/forward, Kyle Anderson, who is averaging nearly a triple-double with 13.9 ppg, 8.9 rpg and 7.1 apg.
That is all fine and dandy, but what needs to be focused on is the defense and this is the game to do it. During last week’s loss to Missouri, the Bruins broke down whatever defensive plan they had while they watched the Tigers score at will from behind the arc.
No hands up, no rebounding and plenty of space for the opposition will kill UCLA and that needs to change now. Serious adjustments have to be made because even though the Bruins should not look ahead, they do have Duke at Madison Square Garden in their next contest.
Prediction: PVAM 67 – UCLA 94