SHARECOMMENTMORE

JIM VERTUNO
AP Sports Writer

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - For 50 years, Colorado could usually be dismissed as a program floating around the backwaters of college basketball.

Since coach Tad Boyle arrived in 2010, Colorado has looked a lot like a program on the rise.

Boyle has led Colorado to the NCAA tournament in consecutive seasons for the first time since 1962-63. The No. 12-seed Buffs (21-11) are a trendy early-round upset pick when they face No. 7 seed Illinois (22-12) on Friday in the East Regional.

Illinois started the season 12-0 but has lost three of its last four under first-year coach Jim Groce.

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