Senator Lindsey Graham

  • South Carolina representative Lindsey Graham along with Pittsburg athletic director Heather Lyke have pushed to outlaw betting on college sports.
  • Lyke’s argument is the many states that prohibit wagering on in-state collegiate sporting events.
  • Graham argues that college betting can have negative effects on students and student-athletes.

PITTSBURGH – There has been a recent push by some Senate representatives and athletic directors to ban betting on college sports. The recent faces for the ban are Pittsburgh University athletic director Heather Lyke and US Senator Lindsey Graham.

Both parties argue the integrity of college sports betting and the negative effects it can have on both students and student-athletes. The issue was brought to a head at a recent U.S. Senate hearing on Wednesday where the call for a federal ban to be implemented was discussed.

Those Opposed To College Sports Betting

Betting on collegiate sports like college football and college basketball are major draws for sports bettors.

Sportsbooks tend to take in a large portion of their annual betting handles for events like March Madness every year. Even as sports betting has become more integrated into the sporting world, there are still those who oppose the practice, particularly on a collegiate level.

Senator Graham has argued on the effects that prop bets would have on college games with players being incentivized to point shave to meet betting goals.

“I’m just saying that, I don’t know, that seems to be almost uncontrollable, and that I think is going to ruin the game,” said Graham. “You got a bunch of people who are amateur athletes. Even with name and likeness, most of them are not going to make a bunch of money. Just how much money could you make if you’re a trainer on the team and you tell somebody, ‘First play’s going to be a pass.’ We need to do something about it.”

Senator Graham has been on the opposing end of any monetary systems coming from the NCAA to players as he believes strongly that the effects would ruin the game as athletes would be pressured to partake in shady business practices.

Graham is not alone in his thoughts, the University of Pittsburgh’s athletic director has also expressed her opposition to sports betting to Congress.

“We urge Congress to directly address gambling on intercollegiate athletics and prohibit it,” said Lyke to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Graham declared that her words were a unanimous representation of the Atlantic Coast Conference schools whom all are opposed to gambling on college sports.

“I think there is a lot of betting that people in the office will fill out the sheet, but none of us are going to influence the outcome of a game because we’re putting 20 bucks in and you may win $200,” said Graham. “I’m not saying that’s right, but that’s a different problem than people who are in the business of gaming, who really would make a lot if [a game] went one way or the other.”

The hearing has not officially led to any federal laws being implemented as of yet, but the situation may go even further if there is more push against legal sports betting on college events.

More on the subject is expected to come forth as lawmakers continue to deliberate.

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