UCLA vs Pittsburgh live stream, watch online, tv channel, prediction, pick, Sun Bowl odds, spread

Two Pac-12 and ACC teams face off in the Sun Bowl on Friday as No. 18 UCLA takes on Pittsburgh. The Bruins can claim their first 10-win season since 2014 with a win over the Panthers in Chip Kelly’s fifth season. It would be the team’s first successful bowl appearance under Kelly after pulling out of the Holiday Bowl in 2021 due to the pandemic.

Pitt followed an ACC championship in 2021 with an inconsistent campaign, losing games to Georgia Tech and Tennessee by one score. However, the Panthers finished the year strong, winning four straight games capped by a 42-16 win over Miami in the Finals. The Sun Bowl provides a preview of the 2023 Panthers as the program tries to regain its 2021 form.

Pitt and UCLA have played 14 times in history, but none in the last 50 years. The Bruins hold an all-time 9-5 advantage, including a 38-28 win over the Panthers in 1972. However, these two teams have never played at a neutral site or in a bowl game.

How to watch Sun Bowl live

Date: Friday 30 December | Time: 2 p.m. ET
Location: Bowl of Sunshine — El Paso, Texas
TV: SCS | Direct: CBSSports.com, CBS Sports app (free)

UCLA vs. Pittsburgh: need to know

Run miles: UCLA boasted one of the best rushing offenses in all of college football, ranked behind only service academies and Ole Miss in rushing offense. The Bruins rushed for 246 yards per game as running back Zach Charbonnet led the program with 1,359 yards and 14 touchdowns. Quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson is also a true dual-threat quarterback with over 2,800 passing yards and 600 rushing yards in a senior breakout season. Pitt has the best defense in the ACC, but UCLA is a unique challenge.

Key departures: Pitt was somewhat of a disappointment in an 8-4 campaign, but three missing players make the Panthers’ job against UCLA even more difficult. Defensive tackle Calijah Kancey will miss the game after undergoing surgery, while top running back Israel Abanikanda retired after declaring himself for the NFL Draft. Quarterback Kedon Slovis was traded to BYU, leaving a handful of backups likely to take snaps. At this point, UCLA quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson and running back Zach Charbonnet expect to play in El Paso.

Dependence on overshoot: With Abanikanda out, Pitt’s offense will rely heavily on his No. 79 passing offense. Senior Nick Patti will make just the second start of his career after completing 9 of 20 passes for 79 yards and a touchdown during his only appearance against Tennessee. He has a great receiving duo in 50-catch receivers Jared Wayne and Konata Mumpfield against a UCLA defense that ranks 120th nationally in passing yards allowed.

Sun Bowl prediction, choice

Featured Game | UCLA Bruins vs. Pittsburgh Panthers

UCLA emerged as a legitimate contender for the Pac-12 championship this season and should be able to keep the momentum going against a Pitt team missing several of its best players. The Bruins have been the better team all year, and that should continue in El Paso. Prediction: UCLA -5.5

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