9-14 overall, 5-11 conference, 14th Big East
Against the spread
9-14-2 (5-8-1 home, 4-6-1 away)
16-9 (9-5 home, 7-4 away)
2005 Season Summary
The Providence Friars were coming off a rather unremarkable 2004-05 season in which they went 14-17 straight up and just 11-16-1 against the spread. It is interesting to note that Providence actually gained betting value the deeper into the schedule that they went as the Friars earned seven payoffs in their final eleven games to prove once again that the more unappealing a team is on the betting boards, the more value that they actually offer to bargain hunting bettors.
Providence entered the 2005-06 season in a bigger and better Big East conference that welcomed four of the toughest teams from Conference USA into its ranks. This coupled with the Friars’ weak performance combined for low expectations.
Stumbled out of the gate
Providence opened the 2005-06 season with back-to-back unlined home wins over New Hampshire and Vermont. This was followed by an 81-78 win at Fairfield as 6-point overlays. They next lost at Wichita State 74-82 as 8-point dogs in a push and then lost at Rhode Island 69-77 as 1.5-point dogs. Eventual national champion Florida came calling to Providence and the homestanding Friars were defeated 77-87 as 5.5-point dogs as they stumbled out of the gate with a 0-3-1 mark against the sportsbooks.
Lack of appeal meant increased value
The poor start by Providence killed what little appeal they may have had with gamblers, particularly those who thought they might be getting a bargain with the Friars. As it turned out Providence’s lack of appeal meant increased value on the betting boards.
The bargains began when Providence got an 89-97 loss/cover at home against highly regarded Memphis as 9.5-point dogs. This was followed by a 92-70 win over Northeastern as 2.5-point home chalks. Next was a home win/push over Yale 76-63 as 13-point chalks. That was followed by an 80-65 home win over San Diego State as 9.5-point chalks as Providence extended their unbeaten streak against the sportsbooks to four games before finally failing to get the cash against to Loyola-Maryland 94-81 as 14-point home overlays. Providence did rebound in the Big East opener against Georgetown with a 62/72 loss/cover as 11-point road dogs to go 4-1-1 against the spread during this six game stretch.
As Providence entered the heart of Big East play they found the going increasingly difficult. Their problems began, in earnest, with a 67-72 home loss to Louisville as 4-point dogs. This was followed by a 77-92 loss at Notre Dame as 7-point dogs. Next was a 48-64 loss at West Virginia as 12.5-point road dogs followed by a 76-75 home win over DePaul as 4-point overlays.
After getting the cash at Rutgers in a 79-69 win as 6.5-point dogs Providence’s free fall continued starting with a 62-76 loss to Connecticut as 10-point home dogs. That was followed by a 74-77 home loss to Seton Hall as 3-point chalks as Providence dropped their sixth game against the sportsbooks out of their last seven.
Providence had little or no appeal with gamblers, which meant that the oddsmakers would be jacking up the lines on the Friars’ opponents. This meant that Providence would be transformed into unwanted bargains that were, more often than not, going up against overlays.
Providence won and covered their next two games, first at home over St. John’s and then at DePaul. After a SU&ATS home loss to Pittsburgh the Friars scored a loss/cover at Cincinnati and then a SU&ATS home win over South Florida for their fourth payoff in five games.
Just when gamblers thought of taking a flyer on the Friars they proved to have nothing left as they lost their final three games both straight up and against the spread.