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UCLA vs California NCAAF College Football Pick

 It has been a frustrating October for the UCLA football team to say the least. Pac-12 rival California will look to keep the misery going for the Bruins in the Thursday Night Football Cal-UCLA game.

ESPN will televise the TNF Cal-UCLA game at 9 p.m. Eastern from the Rose Bowl in Pasadena. Itll be UCLAs second straight appearance on Thursday Night Football, and the Bruins are hoping to put the bad taste of last weeks TNF blowout loss at Stanford behind them in the California-UCLA game.

The Bruins opened October as the #7-ranked team in the country and a team that was being openly discussed as a potential College Football Playoff team. UCLA had defeated a pair of Top 20 teams in September, topping BYU and Arizona. But the Bruins will carry a two-game losing streak into the Cal-UCLA game, and neither loss was particularly close.

UCLA lost on the opening Saturday of October at home to Arizona State, 38-23. Things were much worse last week on TNF for UCLA, as Stanford bullied the Bruins, 56-35, led by Christian McCaffreys school-record 243-yard rushing performance for Stanford. UCLA also has had some off-the-field distractions in October, including the decision by injured defensive star Myles Jack to leave the team three days after the loss to Arizona State.

It doesnt figure to be much easier for the Bruins in the Cal-UCLA game, as the Bears have lost only once all season, and they had a bye week before the California-UCLA contest.

The Bears likely have spent much of the bye week before the Cal-UCLA game contemplating the "what ifs," as the Bears just missed pulling a big upset on the road in Week 6, falling 30-24 at then-#5 Utah. It was the first loss of the season for California. Prior to the Utah loss, the Bears had been 3-0 in games decided by a touchdown or less.

The Cal-UCLA series all-time is lopsided in favor of the Bruins, 52-32-1. But since 1999, Cal leads the series, 9-7, and neither California nor UCLA has been able to win more than three in a row. The Bruins have won six of the last seven in the Cal-UCLA series that were played at the Rose Bowl, including a 37-10 victory in the most recent meeting in Pasadena in 2013.

The road team has only won twice in the past 15 games in this series, but California has been strong on the road this season. Beyond the tight loss at Utah, Cal owns road wins at Texas, 45-44, and at Washington, 30-24, this season. California has won five of its last eight road games over two seasons.