22-13 overall, 9-7 conference, 3rd SEC East
Against the spread
16-15 (2-9 home, 8-2 away)
14-16-1 (4-7 home, 6-4 away)
2005 Season Summary
The Kentucky Wildcats finished the 2004-05 season with a 28-6 mark straight up, which included a Southeastern Conference record of 14-2, good for a first place finish in the SEC East Division.
The Wildcats proved to be over-valued however, as their record at the sportsbooks did not keep pace with their on court performance. Kentucky covered just sixteen of thirty-one games on the board and was a particularly poor value at Rupp Arena.
Just as is the case with college football gambling, college hoops gambling also has its share of “name brand” traditional power type teams, such as Kentucky. Beyond that, college hoops has some historic and revered venues, just as is the case with college football, and Kentucky has one of the most impressive in Rupp Arena, where they play in front of over 20,000 fans for every game. This reputation as an elite program with a significant home court edge has made Kentucky into a habitually poor value on the board.
Kentucky had also seemed to have slipped a notch on the court, performing with less dominance and more inconsistency, which would bear watching for the 2005-06 season.
Kentucky opened the season with a 71-54 unlined home win over South Dakota State. That was followed by another unlined home win over Lipscomb, 67-49.
In their lined opener on a neutral court against Iowa, the Wildcats scored a 63-67 loss as 1-point dogs. That was then followed by an 80-66 neutral court win over West Virginia as 1-point chalks.
entucky then went back off the board for a pair of neutral court home wins over Liberty and High Point. They then lost at home in a marquee matchup with North Carolina 79-83 as 7-point chalks for an unimpressive start of 1-2 against the spread.
Kentucky was back in the win column with a 73-46 win at Georgia State as 13-point chalks. That was then followed by a 53-79 loss to Indiana on a neutral court as 1-point chalks as the Wildcats were treading water both on the court and at the sportsbooks. Kentucky next responded with a nice 73-61 home win over Louisville as 2-point chalks but threw away the god will with a 73-67 win over Iona as 9.5-point neutral court overlays. That was then followed by a 71-63 neutral court win over Ohio as 7-point chalks.
In the red
Things were to get worse for the Wildcats, however, starting with a poor 59-57 home win over Central Florida as 22-point overlays. Kentucky was really in the red after a pathetic 46-73 humiliation at Kansas as 4.5-point dogs. They then opened the SEC season with back-to-back SU&ATS losses at home to Vanderbilt and Alabama as the Lexington faithful were in an uproar.
Unable to gain traction
Kentucky was unable to gain traction as they went through an up and down phase on the court and at the sportsbook. They won at Georgia 69-55 as 1-point chalks but then beat South Carolina 80-78 as 6-point home overlays. They next won at Auburn 71-62 as 4-point chalks but then lost at Arkansas 78-76 as 3.5-point overlays. Things then got worse as the Wildcats lost at Florida 80-95 as 8-point dogs and then lost at home to upstart Tennessee 67-75 as 2.5-point chalks. Kentucky then got a loss/cover at Vanderbilt and then beat Georgia at home 68-61 but failed to cover as 9-point home chalks as they continuously proved to be over-valued at home.
The Wildcats ended the regular season with a 3-2 SU and 4-1 ATS mark as their poor performance against the board turned off many gamblers, making them bargains at the end of the season.
Kentucky went 3-2 SU and 4-1 ATS in post season play as they made the second round of the NCAA tournament before losing to Connecticut 83-87 as 9-point dogs, finishing as a bargain value.