LEAD1 Association Urges States to Protect Universities After Supreme Court Decision

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Recent sports betting scandals in the U.S. involving players have all been at the college level

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Following Monday’s Supreme Court decision, the LEAD1 Association, which represents the athletic directors of the 130-member schools of the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS), urges state legislators, as they deliberate the legalization of sports betting in their state, to take the necessary steps to protect their universities from the risks and costs that sports betting will bring.

With its decision, the Supreme Court cleared the way for states to legalize sports betting, ruling that the federal ban on state-sanctioned sports betting intrudes on state’s affairs and is thus unconstitutional. The 7-2 ruling will invalidate the 1992 Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA), which prohibited sports betting on single game sporting contests except in a few states. Gaming analysts have predicted that 14 states will sanction sports betting by 2020, with the market growing to 32 states within five years. New Jersey, West Virginia, Mississippi, Pennsylvania, New York and Delaware have already passed legislation in anticipation of a ruling. More than a dozen others have considered, or are considering, similar bills this year.

“Eighty percent of our athletic directors have indicated that they oppose college sports betting,” said Tom McMillen, President and CEO of LEAD1 Association. “Our athletic directors are concerned not only about the vulnerability of young student-athletes to inducements of point shaving, but by the increased compliance costs to keep their programs clean. We have seen these cost increases in athletic programs in Nevada (for example, University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV)) where sports betting is legalized, and these compliance costs can run into the hundreds of thousands of dollars. It is crucially important that states help athletic departments secure the extra resources to ensure that student-athletes stay out of trouble. A point shaving scandal would be catastrophic to an athletic department and university.”

About the LEAD1 Association: LEAD1 is an association of the athletic directors of the 130 universities that comprise the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS). The primary role of the LEAD1 Association is to assist the athletic directors, the sports programs, and the personal development of student-athletes. LEAD1 supports the athletic directors of America’s leading intercollegiate programs in preparing today’s students to be tomorrow’s leaders. The Association seeks to accomplish its mission by focusing on shaping the rules of college sports, advocating for our future, and providing services to our members. For more information, please visit our website at http://www.LEAD1Association.com.

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Lori Fravel
LEAD1 Association
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