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Thursday's Tips

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**North Carolina State at Duke**

--Most books opened Duke (19-2 straight up, 12-9 against the spread) as a 10.5-point favorite. As of early this afternoon, most spots had the Blue Devils favored by 11 with a total of 150.5 or 151. Bettors can take the Wolfpack on the money line for a plus-500 payout (risk $100 to win $500). 

--Mike Krzyzewski’s team has posted a 6-6 spread record in 12 previous games as a double-digit favorite. The Blue Devils are unbeaten in 11 home games, compiling a 5-6 spread record at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

--Duke is second in the ACC standings, 2.5 games behind the league-leading Miami Hurricanes. The Blue Devils have won three straight games since getting blasted by a 90-63 count at Miami on Jan. 23. They have collected wins vs. Maryland (84-64), at Wake Forest (75-70) and at FSU (79-60).

--North Carolina St. (16-6 SU, 11-9 ATS) is tied with FSU for fifth in the ACC standings with a 5-4 record. The Wolfpack has lost four of its last six games by seven combined points. Mark Gottfried’s team dropped a 79-78 decision at home to Miami in Saturday’s pick ‘em affair. The Hurricanes finished the game on an 8-2 run capped by Reggie Johnson’s tip-in of a Shane Larkin miss with less than one second to play. C.J. Leslie had 18 points and 12 rebounds in the losing effort.

--North Carolina St. junior guard Lorenzo Brown is ‘doubtful’ at Duke due to an ankle injury that caused him to miss Saturday’s loss to Miami. Brown averages 12.7 points, 6.9 assists and 4.3 rebounds per game.

--Duke senior forward Ryan Kelly remains ‘out’ with a foot injury. Kelly averages 13.4 points and 5.4 rebounds per game.

--N.C. St. owns a 3-1 spread record in four games as an underdog this year.

--The ‘over’ is 10-7 overall for the Wolfpack, 3-2 in five true road assignments.

--The ‘over’ is 11-9 overall for Duke, but the ‘under’ is 6-4 in its home games with a total.

--The ‘over’ is 8-2 in the last 10 head-to-head meetings between these ACC adversaries.

--This game is a part of ESPN's Full-Court Package (722 on DirecTV) and will tip at 9:00 p.m. Eastern.

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**Colorado at Oregon**

--Most books opened Oregon (18-4 SU, 9-11 ATS) as a six-point favorite with a total of 136. As of early this afternoon, the Ducks were 6.5-point 'chalk' with the total slightly increased to 136.5. Gamblers can take the Buffaloes to win outright for a plus-250 return. 

--Colorado (14-7 SU, 11-8 ATS) had won three in a row both SU and ATS until suffering a 58-55 loss Saturday at Utah as a five-point road favorite. Spencer Dinwiddie scored a game-high 18 points for the Buffs, while Andre Roberson produced 10 points, 12 rebounds, four steals and two blocked shots.

--Dana Altman’s squad is unbeaten in 14 home games with a 6-6 spread record. Oregon has lost back-to-back games since winning nine straight. The Ducks are mired in a 1-6 ATS slide. They lost 58-54 at Cal as 1 ½-point underdogs. Tony Woods had 14 points and eight rebounds in defeat.

--Colorado has been an underdog six times, going 3-3 ATS with wins over Baylor on a neutral court and at Washington St.

--Oregon freshman guard Dominic Artis (10.2 PPG) remains 'out' with a foot injury. 

--Oregon is 2-4 ATS as a single-digit favorite.

--The 'under' is 10-4 overall for Oregon, 5-1 in its home games and 8-2 in its last 10 outings (regardless of venue).

--The ‘under’ is 7-5 overall for the Buffs, 6-2 in their last eight games.

--Tip-off is scheduled for 10:00 p.m. Eastern on ESPNU.

**B.E.'s Bonus Nuggets**

--TCU pulled one of the biggest upsets we’ve seen all season Wednesday night, stunning Kansas 62-55 as a 17-point home underdog. Vegas books didn’t even bother to post a money line and only a few offshore books did so. 5Dimes had the Horned Frogs with 25/1 odds to win outright.

--Yes, the SEC is horrible this year but that can be a good thing for sharp bettors. Without many elite scorers, especially among the bottom rung of the conference, 'unders' galore have been cashing. Three teams in particular are among the nation's best 'under' squads: Alabama (13-3), Texas A&M (11-3) and Vanderbilt (13-4).

--If Iowa comes up short in its bid to get to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2006, it will look back on this week as its demise. The Hawkeyes had great chances to win in back-to-back losses at Minnesota and at Wisconsin. The Badgers slipped past the Hawks last night in double overtime.

--Florida power forward Will Yeguete tweeted late last night: “I can’t believe this is happening. This must be a nightmare.” Yeguete had an MRI on his injured knee Wednesday. If Yeguete is indeed out for a significant period of time, this will be a crushing blow to Florida’s national-title hopes.

--Keith Appling suffered an injured shoulder for Michigan St. in its home win over Minnesota last night.

--Speaking of the Gophers, they are sliding fast. Tubby Smith’s squad has lost five of its last seven games.

--Indiana St. captured a monster win for its at-large hopes last night, blasting Creighton 76-57 as a five-point home underdog. The Sycamores now have neutral-court wins over Miami and Ole Miss, in addition to a win at Wichita St. (by double digits!) and last night’s triumph over the Bluejays. They also took New Mexico to overtime.

--Georgia has won five of its last six games with the only loss coming against Florida. The Bulldogs won at Tennessee last night as seven-point underdogs, hooking up money-line backers with a plus-260 return (risk $100 to win $260). Mark Fox clearly doesn’t want to lose his job in Athens.

--Coach of the Year Candidates:
1-Jim Larranaga (Miami)
2-Brad Stevens (Butler)
3-Dana Altman (Oregon)
4-Shaka Smart (VCU)
5-Greg Lansing (Indiana St.)

Brian Edwards can be reached at briane@vegasinsider.com.

For daily sports gambling analysis, follow Brian Edwards on twitter at Vegasbedwards.

  
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