NCAA betting penalties for student-athletes found to be in violation of its sports wagering policies are changing, the governing body announced Wednesday.
The changes involve escalating penalties for student-athletes based on the amount of money wagered. Previously, in most cases, any NCAA betting dollar amount wagered would result in one year of eligibility lost.
There are currently active gambling investigations surrounding the University of Alabama baseball squad, and multiple teams at Iowa University and Iowa State University.
NCAA betting rules breakdown
The new rules are retroactive, beginning with violations reported on or after May 2, per a news release:
For all other wagering-related violations (e.g., betting on professional sports), cumulative dollar value of the wagers will be taken into consideration with the following terms for reinstatement:
- $200 or less: sports wagering rules and prevention education.
- $201-$500: loss of 10% of a season of eligibility, plus rules and prevention education.
- $501-$800: loss of 20% of a season of eligibility, plus rules and prevention education.
- Greater than $800: loss of 30% of a season of eligibility, plus rules and prevention education.
- For cumulative sports betting activities that greatly exceed $800, NCAA reinstatement staff are directed to consider whether additional loss of eligibility, including permanent ineligibility, are appropriate.
Don’t bet on your own team or sport
The other rules released by the NCAA include:
- Student-athletes who engage in activities to influence the outcomes of their own games or knowingly provide information to individuals involved in sports betting activities will potentially face permanent loss of collegiate eligibility in all sports. This would also apply to student-athletes who wager on their own games or on other sports at their own schools.
- If a student-athlete wagers on their own sport at another school, education on sports wagering rules and prevention will be required as a condition of reinstatement, and the loss of 50% of one season of eligibility will be considered.
NCAA betting chair on rule changes
Alex Ricker-Gilbert, Jacksonville University athletic director and chair of the Division I legislative committee, said of the updated policy:
“These new guidelines modernize penalties for college athletes at a time when sports wagering has been legalized in dozens of states and is easily accessible nationwide with online betting platforms.”
“While sports wagering by college athletes is still a concern — particularly as we remain committed to preserving the integrity of competition in college sports — consideration of mitigating factors is appropriate as staff prescribe penalties for young people who have made mistakes in this space.”
NCAA betting investigations pending
The Alabama baseball betting probe remains ongoing with the Ohio Casino Control Commission. It has already resulted in the firing of Crimson Tide coach Brad Bohannon.
Surveillance video at the BetMGM Sportsbook at Great American Ballpark in Cincinnati allegedly showed direct communication between Bohannon and wagerer Bert Eugene Neff, Jr.
Neff got in trouble for making significant bets on the April 28 contest between Alabama and LSU.
“I can’t get into the facts, but let’s just say that (Neff’s) activity and his mannerisms around the actual sportsbook employees triggered them to then go to their manager, who said, ‘Let’s get surveillance on this,’” US Integrity founder and CEO Matt Holt told LSR.
Iowa, Iowa St. student-athlete investigation
The Iowa college investigation involves more than 100 current and former Iowa and Iowa State student-athletes. Holt explained to LSR recently that increased sportsbook login activity during non-gameday events was the reason for the probe.
The Iowa Division of Criminal investigation’s (DCI) Special Enforcement Operations Bureau is leading the probe.
The investigation into possible violations of NCAA gambling policy is more than a month old, with no criminal charges filed.