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Behind the lines

UCLA is still an unknown quantity

July 18, 2008|Lonnie White | Times Staff Writer

College football odds for the first several weeks of the season have been posted on some sports betting boards, but there's still not a line set for UCLA's game against Tennessee at the Rose Bowl on Sept. 1.

That's because of the uncertainty of the Bruins' quarterback situation. Patrick Cowan is out and Ben Olson's status is questionable because of injuries.

With UCLA coming off a 6-7 season and playing under first-year Coach Rick Neuheisel, oddsmakers have taken a wait-and-see approach for the Bruins' game against the Volunteers.

But at least the Las Vegas Hilton is willing to skip ahead. The Bruins are nine-point underdogs for their second game, at Brigham Young on Sept. 13, and 10-point underdogs for their game at Oregon on Oct. 11.

UCLA is also an underdog for its final two games, against Arizona State and USC. The Sun Devils are favored by nine points for their Nov. 28 home game against the Bruins, and the Trojans have been made a 14-point favorite for the game at the Rose Bowl on Dec. 6.

USC has six other regular-season games with posted lines. The Trojans are 17-point favorites for their opener at Virginia on Aug. 30, according to VegasInsider.com.

USC is also a favorite against Ohio State (5 1/2 points), Arizona (10 1/2 ), California (13), and Notre Dame (16 1/2 ), according to the Las Vegas Hilton.

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lonnie.white@latimes.com

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