The UCLA Bruins head north for a game tonight against the Stanford Cardinal at Maples Pavilion. The Bruins are currently riding a four-game winning streak into their second true road game of the season.
Meanwhile, Stanford has struggled through the non-conference season. They’ve lost two straight games and last won on December 17th when they defeated San Francisco at home.
Stanford’s best win of the season so far might be their November 29th win over Montana by a score of 70-54 while they have lost games to North Carolina, Florida, Ohio State, Long Beach State and Kansas.
Head coach Jerod Haase is in his second season with the Cardinal after coaching Alabama-Birmingham for four years before heading west. Before becoming a head coach, Haase worked in the programs of both North Carolina and Kansas.
Haase’s lineup could pose a challenge for UCLA. That’s because the projected starting lineup consists of two guards and three forwards. Stanford’s guards are freshman Daejon Davis and senior Dorian Pickens, who just returned from a foot injury that forced him to miss 11 games. Pickens is the third highest scorer on the teams thus far with 11.3 ppg.
The forwards are junior Reid Travis, who leads the Cardinal with just under 21 points per game; senior Michael Humphrey, who is second with 11.9 ppg; and, freshman Kezie Okpala, who’s currently averaging 8.9 ppg. Humphrey and Travis lead the team in rebounds with 8.9 and 7.1 per game, respectively.
The first two men off the bench for the Cardinal look to be sophomore guard Robert Cartwright and freshman forward Oscar da Silva.
The bottom line here is that, on paper, UCLA should win this game easily. Haase may be in the process of building the Stanford program, but they aren’t there yet.