The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission has launched an investigation into several student athletes at in-state universities for their involvement with sports betting. The NCAA is also going to be doing an investigation, and this could have huge ramifications for two schools, and for the entire industry in the state.
Both the University of Iowa and Iowa State University are named in the initial report, and some current student athletes at both schools have reportedly been wagering on sports. Even if those athletes are at least 21 years of age, the NCAA does not allow betting on any sport in which it holds a national tournament.
According to the report, as many as 26 student athletes from Iowa University are involved, and that number is right around a dozen at Iowa State. The Hawkeyes’ athletic department has confirmed that it has received the report, and is looking into the allegations.
Fans and industry experts first started to get wind of this over the weekend as the Iowa baseball team was sitting out some key players. Along with the baseball team, current athletes on the football, men’s basketball, men’s wrestling, and men’s track and field are involved.
The University of Iowa first notified student-athletes on May 5 that those in question would be withheld from any and all athletic events until more information was available. Leaders at Iowa then reached out to the NCAA, and the NCAA could impose severe sanctions on the school depending on what took place.
The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission has not taken down the odds for any of the in-state collegiate events up to this point, and it’s not believed that the athletes were betting on their own games. This will have a more immediate impact on the baseball and track and field teams as those two sports are currently in action.
Iowa State Keeping Details Protected
Just as the news surrounding the University of Iowa was starting to gain traction, leaders at Iowa State University also made a similar announcement. According to the statement, the university is investigating up to 15 students in various sports.
The athletes that are potential involved at Iowa State participate in:
- Men’s Wrestling
- Track and Field
The NCAA has strict laws on most things related to benefits for college athletes, and not allowing them to potentially win money is on that list. This was always one of the risks that states took when legalizing sports betting, but it was clear that current student athletes were on the banned list.
These investigations by the IRGC and the NCAA could ultimately uncover a bigger gambling problem at either school, and this will be a story that could have many turns and updates in the coming weeks.
Alabama Baseball Coach Fired
This news out of Iowa comes on the heels of a major story that took place in the SEC with the Alabama Crimson Tide baseball team. Alabama actually fired head coach Brad Bohannon at the end of April after some suspicious betting activity was taking place.
That all started during a game between LSU and Alabama on April 28th, and those in the industry started to see some suspicious betting action taking place. US Integrity is a group that monitors all sports betting transactions, and it found some unusual things happening in that game.
The Ohio Casino Control Commission was the first to pull the plug on all Alabama baseball betting, but other states soon followed. The NCAA has not announced any sanctions from that situation, but an investigation is still taking place.