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The Street
The Street
Colin Salao

The NCAA is making a strong appeal that will completely change sports gambling

Sports gambling in the United States took a major turn in 2018 when Supreme Court overturned the rule that banned most of the country from placing bets.

But as the industry has grown exponentially since then, the risk mitigation has lagged behind. These risks could be in the form of Americans who face gambling problems — or in the players themselves who the country bets on.

There are a ton of betting scandals that players have been embroiled in over the years, but the last few weeks have seen some high profile examples through the investigations around MLB star Shohei Ohtani and NBA rookie Jontay Porter.

Given the risks, leagues and even sports media outlets are starting to iron out rules and sanctions against sports betting. For instance, the NFL has a rule where players are not allowed to bet on any NFL event.

Now the NCAA is trying to make a change that will not only affect the players in its league, but the entire betting population. The league announced on Wednesday, March 27 that it is pushing to ban player-specific prop bets. 

Related: DraftKings stock analysts revamp price targets ahead of NCAA Final Four

But the league's reasoning isn't because of the threat of points shaving by active players. It's actually to protect student-athletes from harassment.

"Sports betting issues are on the rise across the country with prop bets continuing to threaten the integrity of competition and leading to student-athletes and professional athletes getting harassed," NCAA President Charlie Baker said in a statement. "The NCAA has been working with states to deal with these threats and many are responding by banning college prop bets."

The case presented by the NCAA isn't uncommon as well. Players have voiced how they're harassed by fans who placed bets on them. Indiana Pacers star Tyrese Haliburton said last week that sometimes he feels like just a "prop" for fans.

“To half the world, I’m just helping them make money on DraftKings or whatever. I’m a prop," Haliburton told reporters on March 19.

A day later, Haliburton told The Athletic that a fan screamed at him during warm-ups before a game that he had bet on them.

"I need you to cover!" the fan said, according to Haliburton.

The news from the NCAA — which is smack in the middle of the Men's and Women's Basketball March Madness that's expected to see Americans bet nearly $3 billion — has not been received well on Wall Street.

DraftKings  (DKNG) , whose stock had been climbing significantly as of late and was projected by experts to continue climbing, is down 7% for the day as of this writing. Flutter Entertainment  (PDYPF) , the parent company for FanDuel that went public in late January, is down over 6% for the day as of this writing.

Related: Veteran fund manager picks favorite stocks for 2024

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