With all of the controversy of gambling in college sports, why is the issuestill an issue? The answer is money. There were actions taken towards this byCongress, but the problem is that it was never completely abolished. Congresshad made the mistake of creating a way around it. It is now commonly referredto as the Las Vegas loophole.
They outlawed the betting nationwide with theexception of one state, one state that is the capital of gambling, Nevada. Thishas caused few changes, with the exception of the ever-growing revenue that itgenerates. Another reason the legality still remains is one not frequentlymentioned, but the question of the ban being constitutional. But no matter whatthe law, is there realistically ever going to be silence or content?To trace the tracks to the start of mending this problem, we need to goback to 1992.
This is the year that the Professional and Amateur SportsProtection Act took precedence. This law restricts gambling on amateur sportsin 46 states and essentially leaves Nevada as the only state that can take betson those games. Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz) and Rep.
Lindsay Graham (R-S. C. )are striving to get two separate bills passed, both of which are targeted atprohibiting gambling on amateur sports. The bills were introduced a year ago,and at the time, were heavily favored. The bills would legally put a stop tobetting on NCAA games, the oh-so-notorious March Madness (the NCAATournament), and wagering on all college sports for that matter.
Las Vegascasino lobbyist have turned offensive. Who wouldnt, if there were possibilitiesof losing a $700 million cash cow, with approximately $70 million on MarchMadness?The money that is generated from sports betting both legal and not, ismuch too vast to be eradicated. Nevada is the tree trunk for which sportsgambling is derived. The casinos are complete with giant electronic boards thatoffer information on daily events ranging from odds to player injuries.
This is thebasis of most sports wagering. Nevada generates $2. 3 billion a year on legalsports betting , where as, betting on college sports revenue in Nevada accountsfor $650 million of the amount. This is far from the issue though. If betting oncollege sports in Nevada is made illegal, I find the impact to be very smallconsidering that illegal sports gambling has been estimated at $80 billion to$380 billion a year.
At the least, 40 times the legal revenue generated seemsvery minute. In addition, studies have shown that for every dollar bet on sportsin Vegas, $100 is bet with bookies and on the Internet. Rep. Jim Gibbons(R-Nev. ), says that there is nothing backing up that legal gambling in Nevada isin any way responsible for the illegal sports wagering that plagues our nationscollege campuses.
Rep. Shelley Berkley (D-Nev. ), said that no problems wouldbe solved by eliminating legal bets any more than suggesting that outlawingaspirin would stop the sale of illegal drugs. A poll done by Gallop from March18-20 (between the first two weekends of this years NCAA tournament) foundthat Americans were divided on issue. The poll stated that 49% believe thatcollege sports gambling should be illegal and 47% believe that it should not. Strikingly, college basketball fans are stuck on 48% on both stand-points.
The possibility of abolishing gambling on college sports is not very likelynor does it hold much hope of bettering the problem. If the betting was banned,theres no possibility of it just disappearing. The figures and dollar amounts ofillegal gambling are much too high now, and it is still legal. What happens whenCongress puts this law into effect and everyone ignores it? It surely does notsay much about our society and its morals. Howard Shaffer, director of theDivision on Addictions at Harvard Medical School, said If we pass legislationthat we cannot enforce, it will undermine authority in general and young peopledont need any more laws that nobody respects. Shaffer added, If itsunenforceable, they will come to see other legislation as unenforceable and thenwell have problems where we dont necessarily have them today.
People of allkinds are in agreeance that the impact of this law would hardly be worth theeffort. John Shelk, vice president of the American Gaming Association, alsostated Its not like Congress is going to pass a law that bans legal gambling,and students across the country will say, Oh my God, I cant gamble anymorebecause its illegal. Sen. McCain, co-author of last years Senate bill,had countered his opinion to ESPN. com by saying, I dont think we have tochoose between enforcing existing laws on illegal gambling and closing theloophole on legal gambling.
McCain added, we can do both. McCain andothers claim that eliminating legalized gambling in Nevada would be anessential first step on stopping the college sports gambling. Critics disagree. They believe that the attempt to chip away at illegal sports gambling isnt alogical first step, at all. The fact of the college sports gambling, is that there is too muchpublicity, popularity, and money surrounding this particular gambling sport. In the beginning there was a problem with popularity.
From 1951-1974, therewas a 10% excise tax levied by the Federal Government on the amount of sportswagers. The tax made the business unprofitable since the profit margin was generally 5% or less before the tax. In 1974, Congress was persuaded by theNevada congressional delegation. From this persuasion, Congress ended upcutting the tax from 10% to 2%.
From there, the boom took off. It took a littletime but the pay off was great. Wagers on professional and college sports weretotaling $1. 3 billion by 1988. After the new wave had taken off, professional sports teams and the NCAA became concerned.
One outspoken supporter wasBill Bradley, a former basketball star and Democratic Senator from New Jersey. Bradley expressed, state-sponsored sports betting could change forever therelationship between the players and the game, and the game and the fans. Sports would become the gamblers game and not the fans game, and athleteswould become roulette chips, he pleaded in 1992. Bradley and othersapparently made quite an impact because Congress enacted the Professionaland Amateur Sports Protection Act, which was noted earlier as the Nevada loop hole. Again, the conflict elevated from there on out.
Realistically though, as much as the NCAA wants this legalizationstopped, there is an issue thats never discussed, but could legally keep theassociation from doing anything. It is another loophole that Nevada has found,and is a little more concrete. It is the 10th amendment, which delegates powersto the states not to the federal government. This means that if the bill becomesa law, the state of Nevada will definitely have grounds to contest it.
The popularity of college sports gambling has continued to grow over the years. When the NCAA tournament begins to roll around each year, Nevadagets hard at work. March Madness, is virtually a madness. Its a craze that is sovery wide-spread, it would literally be impossible to get rid of it. Brackets andspreads are created, and almost anybody with vision can say that they haveseen the NCAA tournament bracket. It is so popular now that some mediadevote entire sections of newspapers to the event.
Its inevitable that readersare able to find the bracket listed, and usually bold and in full color. You caneven find the bracket displayed at bars, restaurants, and even work places. More popular is the office pool that seems to have grown so much that womenand even non-sports fans find them selves anteing in at a shot on the pool. Ifthis legislation is to pass, how are things like the office pools going to beregulated? Can any one realistically imagine the day that cops and or Federalagents busting bars and business environments for illegal gambling all over thecountry? The idea of the regulation is ridiculous. In addition to the casual gambling in offices and such, what about the vastexpansion of gambling and sources of it on the Internet? The Internet is full ofsites devoted to college sports and gambling of it.
As far as the NCAA goes, ithas what most would consider a hypocritical view on the situation. The NCAA claims to be firmly against the legal betting, but when it comesto the Tournament and other advertised events, one might think differently aboutthe beliefs. In congressional testimony the NCAA says it opposes all forms ofillegal sports wagering. Well, if anyone has heard of a little network calledCBS, they might be able to recall a small tournament, in correlation with thenetwork, called the NCAA Tournament.
These two were in conjunction for thisyears tournament, but somehow the NCAA had no problem with CBS repeatedly pointing viewers to CBS. Sportsline. com, all throughout the broadcast. Additionally, CBS.
Sportsline. com owns Las Vegas Sports Consultants. Someauthorities estimate that over 80% of Las Vegas sports books subscribe to theline, set by this firm. During the tournament, this web site offered a freeBracket Pool Manager, in addition to odds, points, spreads, over/unders, andso on. You cant gamble through the site, but what other purpose does aBracket Pool Manager and other such emminities serve besides gambling. When you link all of these things together, it just doesnt make any sense.
There has to be an approval by the NCAA for all of this to have taken place,therefore, it is indeed to some extent, condoning this action that it claims to beso against. So what do you think that the NCAA can do or say? Would it befeasible for them to say no, you cant say that or broadcast our tournamentanymore? NO! CBS accounts for 90%. . .
yes, 90% of the NCAA operatingrevenue. I seriously doubt that the NCAA is so consumed with its beliefs, that it will just discard the whole money issue that goes along with it. The National Association of Basketball Coaches, Official Athletic Sitebelieves that the NCAA has many problems that it needs to address and correctbefore jumping the gun to Congress. Marc Isenbergs article on the site statedthat, The NCAA cannot even begin to educate athletes and other students-oreven congress-until it does the following:1. ) demand that CBS cut its ties with CBS. Sportsline.
com and Las Vegas SportsConsultants, which are a major part of the infrastructure of gambling on collegesports2. ) prohibit corporate partners from using bracket promotions or contestsconnected to the outcome of games3. ) refuse to credential media outlets who publish lines and accept ads from toutservices4. ) fund a gambling education program on college campuses that addresses theproblem of gambling, not just shaving. Can the NCAA tear itself away from its Show me the money outlook to conductsuch a campaign? The answer is No. The truth remains, that nobodyespecially not the NCAA wants to go back to the unpopular, no money-makingways of the past.
There is an undeniable problem with betting in college sports, mainlywhen it comes to students. This is the NCAAs major concern, but namely, pointshaving. In general, point shaving is done by players that intentionally missshots to change the outcome of the game. The NCAA has a very justifiablereason for the abolishment in terms of this actual concern. Over the past view years, there have been many cases in which athletesgot involved in the negative aspects of gambling. This would often times resultin owing bookies so much that they would get sucked into the point shavingproblem.
One student made his mark when he got involved with his roommate,who was also a popular bookie that was being investigated by officials. The student was Teddy Dupay, a basketball player for the University of FloridaGators. Dupay had shared winnings with his friend Kresten Lagerman, 23, aftergiving him inside information about whether the Gators could cover pointspreads. Florida had also endured a 2000-2001 season filled with injuries. There were also many instances of injured players returning much sooner thanexpected.
Following this discovery, Dupay was dismissed from the team. Another student, a running back at the Northwestern University had become theschools rushing leader. He had become involved in gambling so in-depth thathe fumbled the football at the goal line to ensure his $400 wager on the pointspread of his own game. These are the instances that are worthy of theabolishing desire.
Still, the fact remains that these examples and 99% of sportsgambling is done illegally or under the table. The truth of the matter is that, this is another back-and-forth issue (likeabortion) that will never have silence nor contentment. There are seriousproblems with players and the ethics of the game, but no matter what, a ban onsports gambling will never solve one-single problem. The fact remains that 99%of all sports gambling is done illegally.
Since it is currently legal, is there anytruth to solving the problem by abolishing it? College sports gambling is truly notthe real issue. There are too many other factors at play. When it comes to theplayers getting involved, I believe that they are able to make their own decisions. If they have difficulty doing that, there must be somewhat of a different issue-Ethics.
Apparently, the NCAA should concentrate more on its players thanNevada. With the problem of these players, it doesnt leave much meaning tothe idea may the best man win. BibliographyBarlett, Donald L. and James B.
Steele, Throwing the Game, Time,(September 25, 2000)Gillespie, Mark, Americans Split on Whether Gambling on College SportsShould Be Banned, The Gallup Organization,(April 1, 2002)Isenberg, Marc, Gambling on College Sports: The NCAAs Solution is Partof the Problem, National Association of Basketball Coaches, Official AthleticCite,(April 25, 2002)Jansen, Bart, Big name coaches support ban on amateur sports gambling, The Detroit News,(April 25, 2002)Pells, Eddie, Complaint: Dupay received money for sharing info, Slam!Basketball,(September 14,2001)Rovell, Darren, Congree could trump Vegas on college book, ESPN,(March 15, 2002)Sauve, Valerie, Issues Committee holds discussion on illegal sports wagering inNCAA, The Daily Beacon, (March5, 2002)Words/ Pages : 2,369 / 24