24-7 overall, 17-3 conference, 1st Ohio Valley Conference
Against the spread
12-17 (5-9 home, 5-6 away)
13-15-1 (6-7-1 home, 6-5 away)
2005 Season Summary
The Murray State Racers finished the 2004-05 season with a record of 17-11 straight up, including 11-5 in Ohio Valley Conference play, which was good for a third place finish in the league.
The Racers didn't quite keep pace against the college basketball gambling lines, however, as they finished 11-12 against the spread. Murray State did offer some good board value down the stretch, however, as they got the cash in five of their last six games.
Murray State had one of the better and more respectable reputations in the college basketball gambling community and it was expected that they would kick it up a notch for 2005-06. The bigger question on the board, however, was whether or not Murray State would offer any real value as they were one of the better known teams in the Ohio Valley Conference, which often deprived them of getting full value from the oddsmakers, who would over-charge on games involving the Racers due to their superior name recognition with the gambling public.
Murray State opened the 2005-06 season with a 75-79 overtime loss/cover at Cincinnati as 10.5-point dogs. That was then followed by an unlined 76-51 home win over Campbellsville. In their next game on a neutral court against Tennessee, the Racer lost 53-64 as 4.5-point dogs in a classic example of how they tend to be over-valued. They then went back off the board and scored an 89-79 overtime win at Texas-San Antonio.
Back on the board at home against Eastern Kentucky, the Racers scored a nice 80-51 blowout win and cover as 10.5-point chalks. That was then followed by another blowout win, 92-40, over Morehead State as 25-point chalks. The Racers remained hot, as they next destroyed Jacksonville State 91-72 as 9-point chalks for a third consecutive payoff and a profitable start of 4-1 ATS.
Signs of trouble
Murray State next traveled to Samford and scored a 50-61 loss as 7.5-point overlays and that was followed by a 53-57 home loss to Southern Illinois as 6-point chalks for the first signs of trouble against the board. The losing streak was halted with an 83-65 win/payoff over Rice as 15-point home chalks.
Murray State was off to a good start against the board and that, coupled with their favorable public reputation, was going to cause them problems on the board, starting with a 75-67 home win over Tennessee State as 14.5-point overlays. That was followed by an 81-68 win over Southeast Missouri State as 17.5-point overlays. Next came a 66-65 close call against Eastern Illinois as the Racers were whopping 21.5-point overlays as they failed to get the cash for the third straight time despite getting a straight up win.
The free fall accelerated with a 67-56 home win over Austin Peay that the Racers failed to cover as 13-point chalks. Next came a 54-59 loss at Eastern Illinois as 12.5-point chalks followed by a 79-73 win at Tennessee-Martin as 7.5-point chalks. It was more of the same at home against Tennessee Tech as the Racers scored a 55-51 win but failed to cover the 11-point spread. The red ink flowed again with a 76-69 win at Southeast Missouri State as the Racers were 8.5-point overlays and failed to get the cash for the eighth consecutive game.
During that stretch of eight consecutive pointspread failures, the Racers had won seven of those games straight up, which was a clear indicator of their lack of board value and overlay status.
The Racers finally got the cash in a home win over Samford but then resumed their role as overlays by failing to cover SU wins at Austin Peay and at home to Jacksonville State. They did go on to finish the season 5-1 SU and 4-2 ATS as they retained some board value down the stretch after chasing off the public with their horrific board performance during the stretch of OVC play. Murray State went 3-0 SU but 1-2 ATS in the OVC tourney and then lost 65-69 to North Carolina in the NCAA tourney, getting the cash as 10-point bargain dogs in a role reversal to end the year.