College b-ball cashes in

The NCAA believes that legal betting on college games is antithetical to the purity of its student athletes, yet allows colleges to accept advertising money from casinos. Hypocrisy? You be the judge. From USA Today:

From the $591 million in TV and marketing revenue generated this season to the masses awaiting Saturdays semifinals and Mondays championship game at Detroits Ford Field, the mens tournament and its Final Four have grown into a mega-event on the order of footballs Super Bowl. This year, the NCAA altered its Final Four seating plan to accommodate tens of thousands more ticket buyers, swelling the capacity to a record 70,000-plus and bumping gate receipts by $7 million from the 40,000- to 50,000-seat setups of the past.

Its an apt backdrop for a sometimes contentious debate within the NCAA and its more than 300 Division I schools: How far should the NCAA and its members go to boost revenue at a time when the nations fiscal crisis is weighing on college athletics?

Many schools, with the blessing of NCAA President Myles Brand, are courting an increasingly varied array of sponsors and advertisers and creating some discomfort in the process.

Several schools and conferences allow advertising and promotions by casinos in their arenas or game programs, a practice the NCAA once frowned upon because of gamblings potential threat to the integrity of its sports.

College athletes, in the name of amateurism, are strictly forbidden from cashing in on their renown beyond the scholarships they receive.

But today — as part of arrangements that can bring millions of dollars to their schools — theyre featured in game footage that increasingly shows up on the Internet alongside sponsors logos and products. And in basketball and football video games, the computer-generated likenesses of real-life, still-in-school stars are unmistakable.

NCAA, colleges pushing the envelope with sports marketing – USATODAY.com.

College basketball has become a big business, obviously. And there’s clearly plenty of betting on it. If you allow one association with gambling, such as advertising, you’re already giving the message that gambling is legitimate. So if it’s OK for followers of your program who are watching at home to shoot craps with your sponsor, what’s wrong about them putting $20 on your team to beat the spread?

Author: Dave

Director of the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and author of several books, including Roll the Bones: The History of Gaming. Also Gaming and Hospitality editor for Vegas Seven magazine.

1 thought on “College b-ball cashes in”

  1. Millions and millions of people bet on college basketball and college football along with pro football and pro basketball. Through various websites you can bet on these games and millions of people do. If the US government can figure out a way to tax this they can make millions of dollars.

    Illinois is billions of dollars in debt (along with many other states) and in my opinion one way to raise money would be to legalize parlay cards and tax it. The odds would be the same as they have in Las Vegas:
    2 teams: 13 to 5
    3 teams: 6 to 1
    4 teams: 10 to 1
    etc, etc

    I graduated from Illinois State University in 1989 and some of the taverns I frequented had parlay cards. Go to most college campuses today and they still would probably have some parlay cards in some taverns. Legalize it and tax it.

    One of the reasons the NFL started Monday Night Football in 1971 was because of gambling. People would have one more chance to bet on a game before the next week. The reason the NFL is so popular today is because of gambling: betting on the actual games, Fantasy Football and confidence pools (picking winners with a number value of 1 through 16).

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