East Tenn St vs Murray St
East Tenn St +190 over Murray St

Pinnacle +174 -106 BET365 +190 SportInteraction +180 BetOnlin+180 -110  Bookmaker  +189

Posted at 1:30 PM EST.

East Tenn St +190 over Murray St

5:30 PM EST. Note the early start time that takes place on a neutral floor in Naples, Florida at the Moe Kent Family Fieldhouse with a capacity of 1200 and we’re going to suggest that the wrong side is favored. We love this early season, non-con games because of matchups just like this one, in which the market believes it’s getting an underpriced favorite when the opposite is true.

Murray State has some pedigree while racing out to a 3-0 record this year. That’s nice but the three wins occurred against Cumberland University, Bellarmine and Illinois State. That would be against two cupcakes and one Division III team that was denied Division II status back in 2014. Incidentally, Cumberland scored 77 on Murray State and lost 104-77. Against Bellarmine. Oddsmakers made Murray State just a nine-point favorite, which suggests that they didn’t put a lot of faith in the Racers ability to win by a big margin over a complete dreg. 

Deciphering which teams deserve a mulligan for last year’s shortcomings is a delicate, and largely subjective, process and we’re not quite ready to put an asterisk beside Murray State’s name. There were too many disturbing losses and while the team is talented with some strong transfers, coach Matt McMahon gutted a good chunk of the roster this summer. The Racers have not been tested and will now face a formidable foe for the first time this year. 

ETSU is 1-2, therefore we have a 3-0 squad posted as an enticing four-point favorite over a 1-2 squad. What the records do not reveal is that ETSU played App State and #18 Tennessee to start the year before beating South Carolina Upstate. The ETSU had a very decent second half against the Vols and while some will argue that UT took its foot off the gas after going to the half up 46-23, we would argue otherwise because the Vols did not pull their starters until very late in the second half. ETSU would go on to score 39 points in the second half against Tennessee and lose that half by just nine.

Desmond Oliver is the new head coach in Johnson City, a college basketball assistant since 1994 who spent the past six years on Rick Barnes’s staff at Tennessee. Oliver has the reputation of being one of the top recruiters in the country, and his players seem to love him. That was reinforced by ETSU’s relatively little turnover this offseason; the Bucs lost only one key player to the portal,, and Oliver convinced the brothers Brewer to stick around along with three super seniors. ETSU will look to get back to its dominant ways after a season in which it finished a mediocre 13-12 (8-7). It was the first time since 2015 the Bucs won less than 20 games overall and 10 in conference play. Despite the coaching change, ETSU should very much be considered a contender to win the SoCon this season. Oliver appears to be an excellent hire, and he has a roster chock full of experience, continuity, talent, and athleticism. 20+ overall wins and 10+ league wins should be well within ETSU’s grasp and this one at worst is a 50/50 proposition.

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Our Pick

East Tenn St +190 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 3.80)

 

 

ORAL ROBERTS +9 -110 over Oklahoma St