Prop bets helped fuel the $11 billion sports gambling boom—but the NCAA president wants them gone

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NCAA President and Gov. Massachusetts veteran Charlie Baker worries that sports betting is ruining college sports. In fact, they are so worried that on Wednesday they asked the authorities to stop them. It’s hard to sell too much The $11 billion legal gambling industry grew nearly 50% last year—and even if Baker can guarantee that the genie will be back in the bottle, research shows that sellers may just turn to the black market instead.

Propositional betting, or “prop” betting, allows gamblers to bet on specific events or individual players in a game, instead of general bets such as the winner or the number of points. Regulators complain that prop betting is too easy for punters or gamblers who want to fix results. Yes, a The NBA announced this week that it is scouting Toronto Raptors guard Jontay Porter In the course of the trial he allegedly profited illegally by betting on his game.

“Sports betting cases are on the rise across the country as sports betting continues to threaten the integrity of competition,” Baker he wrote in a statement released on Wednesday. “The NCAA is focusing on sports betting to protect student-athletes and to protect the integrity of the game – news stories across the country over the past few days show there is more work to be done.”

How online sports betting began

Because gambling is regulated statewide, Baker said the NCAA will ask states to ban betting on college sports, a policy he controls. Vermont, Ohioand Maryland it has already been established at the beginning of this year.

The Supreme Court struck down a federal sports betting ban in 2018. Since then, 38 states and the District of Columbia have legalized some form of sports gambling. Prop betting makes up a small portion of the gambling volume. Although there is no federal data, a The Ohio Casino Control Commission reported last month that prop bets make up about 2% of all sports bets placed in the state.

But sports betting has attracted a lot of attention – both good and bad. Zany Super Bowl betting tips as if Taylor Swift could leave Tokyo in time to see her friend Travis Kelce play and Usher’s comments on his show spurred interest in betting last month. On the other hand, critics say fair betting can lead to player abuse, which Maryland cited when it banned such betting earlier this month.

Some high-profile gambling news stories have raised concerns about the industry’s growing influence over the past few weeks. Last week, Los Angeles Dodgers star Shohei Ohtani accused his translator of stealing millions of dollars from him to pay off his sports gambling debts. NBA head coach JB Bickerstaff recently he said that he had received threats from gamblers. All the time, companies continue to grow: the The American Gaming Association reported on revenue about $11 billion last year, an increase of 45% from 2022.

What happens if prop bets are banned?

More bans on college betting likely won’t cause a major financial blow to what has proven to be a popular form of gambling because the bans make up a small portion of the market. But the ban could have unintended consequences, such as encouraging gamblers to make the same bets through non-sportsbooks instead of registrations.

Illegal betting that takes place through methods such as unlicensed bookies, unregistered websites, or the services of legal bookies that have licenses in other countries or a country where the operator is more popular than legal bookies, according to the data of Intelligence platform Yield Sec. YieldSec’s analysis of betting data predicted that of the $6.7 billion wagered on this year’s March Madness tournament, 63% will be illegally wagered.

Illegal betting has been a thorn in the side of regulators since sports betting was legalized nationwide in 2018. As interest in sports betting grows, the growth of illegal betting has exceeded legal limits, according to Vali.

“You are legally registered and in control [sports betting]. You have now accepted and made changes to illegal gambling,” YieldSec CEO Ismail Vali said. Chance.

Banning prop betting in line with Baker’s proposal would risk exacerbating this and push bookmakers into illegal areas that would still offer prop betting.

While the NCAA may be successful in lobbying states to revoke approvals for college sports betting, it may not be the end of the process, said Michael McCann, a University of New Hampshire professor and legal expert.

“Governments can change what is legal in sports betting, but any changes that would be made could be challenged in the legislative process,” McCann wrote in an email to. Chance.

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