UCLA Men's Basketball 2014 NCAA Tournament Capsule

UCLA Bruins
Pac-12 (26-8, 12-6)


When you think about college basketball this is the program that was the gold standard for many years. The situation is not as dire on the west end of Los Angeles as it was in the mid-1980s, or even a couple years ago when UCLA finished sixth in the Pac-12, because UCLA finished second behind Arizona in the Pac-12 and made it to the conference’s championship game. That should guarantee a fairly high tournament seed in one of the NCAA brackets. All told, it has been a fairly successful start to the Steve Alford era at Pauley Pavilion, and there are many that hope the Bruins can make a deep run into the NCAA tournament… or at least get to the round of 32 for the first time since 2011.

Big Wins: 1/16 at Colorado (69-56), 1/30 at Oregon (70-68), 2/19 at California (86-66)
Bad Losses: 1/18 at Utah (69-74), 2/2 at Oregon State (67-71), 3/8 at Washington State (55-73)
Coach: Steve Alford (1 season at UCLA)

Why They Can Surprise:
Let’s face it. The word surprise doesn’t go with UCLA the way it does with most teams. The Bruins have a high-quality reputation as a scoring team. UCLA also leads the Pac-12 in assists, steals, turnover margin and assist-turnover ratio. The Bruins take great care of the basketball and they also do not cough it up like other teams might. The top two scorers at UCLA are also sophomores, Jordan Adams and Kyle Anderson, and together these two have combined for 32 points per game. UCLA hasn’t reached the Sweet 16 since 2008, so there are many fans that suspect the Bruins will make an appearance and bow out in the first or second round. There is a sense this team is different, even though Howland’s last squad suffered an early exit after winning the conference championship.

Why They Can Disappoint:
Bring up two words to the Bruin backers… Washington State… and watch them cringe. It was a late-season loss… and granted, it was at Pullman and not in Los Angeles… but losing to a team that finished 3-15 in the regular season raises a few alarm bells. It is possible Alford may have sat some players to prepare for the tournament knowing that second place was secured in the conference, but knowing the coach that wasn’t likely. Just chalk it up to a bad game. If this happens in the tournament, however, all bets are off. The Bruins are among the Pac-12 leaders in most scoring categories, but they allow 71.4 points a game and that places UCLA in the bottom half of the conference. If UCLA runs into a high-scoring offense, it may have trouble stopping the opponent.

Probable Starters:
Jordan Adams, Sophomore, Guard, 17.2 ppg, 2.3 apg, 2.7 spg
Norman Powell, Junior, Guard, 11.3 ppg, 1.8 apg
Kyle Anderson, Sophomore, Guard/Forward, 14.9 ppg, 6.6 apg, 8.8 rpg
Travis Wear, Senior, Forward, 7.0 ppg, 3.3 rpg
David Wear, Senior, Forward, 6.7 ppg, 3.9 rpg

Key Roleplayers:
Zach LaVine, Freshman, Guard, 10.0 ppg, 1.9 apg
Bryce Alford, Freshman, Guard, 8.1 ppg, 2.7 apg
Tony Parker, Sophomore, Forward/Center, 6.8 ppg, 4.5 rpg

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 82.0 (10th in nation, 2nd in conference)
Scoring Defense: 71.4 (218, 8)
Field-Goal Percentage: 48.6 (16, 2)
Field-Goal Defense: 42.9 (133, 6)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 6.5 (133, 4)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 39.3 (21, 1)
Free-Throw Percentage: 75.1 (15, 3)
Rebound Margin: 1.8 (132, 6)
Assists Per Game: 17.3 (5, 1)
Turnovers Per Game: 10.5 (29, 2)

Recent Postseason Appearances:
2013    NCAA    Second Round loss to Minnesota
2011    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Michigan State
2011    NCAA    Round of 32 loss to Florida
2009    NCAA    Round of 64 win over VCU
2009    NCAA    Round of 32 loss to Villanova
2008    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Mississippi Valley State
2008    NCAA    Round of 32 win over Texas A&M
2008    NCAA    Regional Semifinal win over Western Kentucky
2008    NCAA     Regional Final win over Xavier
2008    NCAA    National Semifinal loss to Memphis
2007    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Weber State
2007    NCAA    Round of 32 win over Indiana
2007    NCAA    Regional Semifinal win over Pittsburgh
2007    NCAA     Regional Final win over Kansas
2007    NCAA    National Semifinal loss to Florida
2006    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Belmont
2006    NCAA    Round of 32 win over Alabama
2006    NCAA    Regional semifinal win over Gonzaga
2006    NCAA    Regional final win over Memphis
2006    NCAA    National semifinal win over LSU
2006    NCAA    National final loss to Florida

*all team stats through 3/9


See All Men’s Basketball Postseason Capsules