Thursday’s slate and what to watch

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If Michigan State is this season’s biggest disappointment among major conference teams, Gonzaga takes the prize for mid-major teams.

The Zags (14-8, 4-3 in WCC play) ended a three-game skid last Saturday by throttling San Diego at home, but tonight’s trip to Portland and Saturday’s homestand against Memphis represent two crucial moments in their season. Two losses would end any shot of an at-large bid (if it’s not already gone). A split would save face among observers, while winning both merely means they remain securely on the bubble.

Oh, and that game against Portland tonight? It’s a doozy considering the Pilots just beat St. Mary’s at home. (11 p.m. ET, ESPN2)

(All times ET)

Arizona at Stanford, 10 p.m.: The Wildcats (18-4, 7-2 in Pac-10 play) are cruising along in conference play and starting to earn some plaudits beyond Derrick Williams’ outstanding play. Tough to know what the Cardinal (11-9, 4-5) will be like, too. They beat Washington last month and sport the conference’s most efficient defense. This could be closer than expected.

Wofford at College of Charleston, 7 p.m. (ESPNU): Wofford senior Noah Dahlman’s quietly having a spectacular season (tempo-free or otherwise). He’s a lock to break the school scoring record tonight (he needs six points), but I’m more curious to see if he can break double figures – because he’s done so for 70 straight games. Also, after a rough non-conference season, the Terriers are leading the Southern Conference’s South division. Right on their tail? CoC.

Michigan at Ohio State, 7 p.m. (ESPN): It’s the obligatory “will the Buckeyes’ unbeaten season end tonight?” line. If it does, hell may just freeze over. Oh. Wait.

EAST
Vermont at Hartford, 7 p.m.
Sacred Heart at Long Island U., 7 p.m.
Monmouth, N.J. at Mount St. Mary’s, Md., 7 p.m.
Bryant at Robert Morris, 7 p.m.
Quinnipiac at St. Francis, NY, 7 p.m.
Cent. Connecticut St. at St. Francis, Pa., 7 p.m.
Fairleigh Dickinson at Wagner, 7 p.m.
Binghamton at UMBC, 7:30 p.m.

SOUTH
Georgia Southern at Chattanooga, 7 p.m.
Liberty at Coastal Carolina, 7 p.m.
Wofford at Coll. of Charleston, 7 p.m.
Winthrop at Gardner-Webb, 7 p.m.
Georgia Tech at Miami, 7 p.m.
Presbyterian at UNC Asheville, 7 p.m.
Furman at The Citadel, 7:05 p.m.
Belmont at Jacksonville, 7:15 p.m.
VMI at Charleston Southern, 7:30 p.m.
Lipscomb at North Florida, 7:45 p.m.
N. Dakota St. at Centenary, 8 p.m.
Louisiana-Monroe at Middle Tennessee, 8 p.m.
Davidson at Samford, 8 p.m.
South Alabama at W. Kentucky, 8 p.m.
Tenn.-Martin at Austin Peay, 8:30 p.m.
E. Kentucky at Tennessee Tech, 8:30 p.m.
Fla. International at Troy, 8:30 p.m.
Morehead St. at Jacksonville St., 8:45 p.m.
Tennessee at Auburn, 9 p.m.
Murray St. at Tennessee St., 9 p.m.

MIDWEST
Valparaiso at Cleveland St., 7 p.m.
IPFW at IUPUI, 7 p.m.
Michigan at Ohio St., 7 p.m.
Loyola of Chicago at Wright St., 7 p.m.
Butler at Youngstown St., 7:05 p.m.
Ill.-Chicago at Detroit, 7:30 p.m.
SIU-Edwardsville at South Dakota, 8 p.m.
Oakland, Mich. at W. Illinois, 8 p.m.
Notre Dame at DePaul, 9 p.m.

SOUTHWEST
Denver at Ark.-Little Rock, 8 p.m.
Florida Atlantic at North Texas, 8 p.m.
S. Dakota St. at Oral Roberts, 8:05 p.m.
Utah Valley at Texas-Pan American, 8:30 p.m.
Chicago St. at Houston Baptist, 8:35 p.m.

FAR WEST
Montana St. at N. Arizona, 8:35 p.m.
Washington St. at Oregon, 9 p.m.
Washington at Oregon St., 9 p.m.
Arizona at Stanford, 9 p.m.
Montana at Weber St., 9 p.m.
Hawaii at Boise St., 9:05 p.m.
E. Washington at N. Colorado, 9:05 p.m.
UC Davis at Cal Poly, 10 p.m.
New Mexico St. at Fresno St., 10 p.m.
Pepperdine at Saint Mary’s, Calif., 10 p.m.
Loyola Marymount at San Diego, 10 p.m.
CS Northridge at UC Riverside, 10 p.m.
UC Irvine at Cal St.-Fullerton, 10:05 p.m.
San Jose St. at Idaho, 10:05 p.m.
Portland St. at Sacramento St., 10:05 p.m.
Arizona St. at California, 11 p.m.
Gonzaga at Portland, 11 p.m.
Pacific at UC Santa Barbara, 11:30 p.m.

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