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John Hyslop shares his picks for early on Thursday for Michigan vs CSU, SDSU vs Providence, Memphis vs Boise St, Baylor vs Norfolk St

Thursday Early Picks: Michigan vs CSU, SDSU vs Providence, Memphis vs Boise St, Baylor vs Norfolk St

There's the "First Four" and then there's the first four. For years, the "first four" meant the first four games on Thursday. At least to me anyway. That's because I break both Thursday and Friday down by four. There are 16 games on each day so naturally, you can make the whole thing more manageable if you just break it down by four (math). I'm telling you it works. If you want to get even more crazy you can approach each quad like it's a four quarter football game but it's not completely necessary. Point is, 16 games in one day is a lot for anyone so to make it easier, I'm breaking Thursday and Friday into manageable pieces for us to enjoy. Hats off to me for that.

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12:15 pm ET - Michigan -1 (-110) (Bet $110 to win $100)

Obviously, you have to have a play on this game since it's the first one of the day. It would be incredibly irresponsible not to. The thing is, I don't have a great read. The first half total is out of the question being that it is the first game on Thursday. Both teams have way too many guys taking shots to do player props. The only shred of anything I have is the fact that Colorado State was complaining about their flights before this game. That is the mark of weakness if I've ever seen it. Never let them see you sweat people. Ever. Especially not a team that is coached by a guy that will punch you in the head. Not smart. Michigan wins this game (probably).

12:40 pm ET - South Dakota State -1 (+110) (Bet $100 to win $110)

I'm living that alt line life for the duration of this tournament. When you're betting every game, you need to find ways to tip the scales in your favor. That's just how scales work. The way I see it, South Dakota State is either going to win this game or get smoked. Taking +2 really isn't doing us any favors. Two points is nice but you lose $15 extra with every loss at -115. We could use that money to gamble with. Use your head. The thing is, I think they can win this game. Providence isn't great offensively and they've shown they can absolutely be boat-raced by fast-paced teams that are. Take Marquette for example. They got waxed by them 88-56 back in January. I think South Dakota State has a real shot here.

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1:45 pm ET - Memphis -3.5 (+105) (Bet $100 to win $105)

This one is stretching a bit but I think I might be a genius for doing it. First off, Memphis beat Houston twice this season. Twice! I think Houston is the kind of team Boise State tries to be. Like a knockoff Gucci bag your wife owns, they aren't the same. They play super slow and try to muck things up. It's dumb but it wins games sometimes. The type of team it doesn't work against is Memphis. They play fast, they press, they can shoot and they aren't afraid of anyone. I bet they wax Boise State.

2:00 pm ET - Baylor/Norfolk State Under 136.5 (+100) (Bet $100 to win $100)

I know this is an under but we're allowed to take it because the game is on at an opportune time. We can just watch the Memphis game and if things start to go south, we can catch the Tennessee/Longwood game at 2:45 pm ET. I'm holding onto the fact that I think Baylor smashes the Norfolk State kids. Like bad. I can see a 77-50 type game here where the Bears legit do nothing for the last five minutes. I was tempted to take this number even lower for a bigger payday but why try to be a hero on an under? That doesn't make sense.

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John has spent the past 20+ years betting sports on a daily basis and is considered by many to be a walking sports betting encyclopedia. From obscure player props to sides and totals, if there is an angle, John will find it. His work has appeared on Rotogrinders and he has been a regular on sports talk radio stations across the country. Based in the US, John operates a blog & podcast, Sports Bets Beers, which covers betting angles in the NFL, NBA, MLB, & NHL.


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