- The provision allows regulators to ban gamblers who harass sports players.
- Details of the change include banning and exclusion.
- The policy is first-of-its-kind.
Ohio lawmakers have created legislation targeting gamblers who harass athletes during sporting events. A change was made to the 2023-24 budget and targets those betting on sports and threatening to harm a player.
It is unclear how this new change will come into effect. The rule will be first-of-its-kind, and it would not be surprising to see other states follow suit.
A Work in Progress
Matt Schuler, the Ohio Casino Control Commission Executive Director, already called for such a rule to be considered. Several incidents took place that threatened members of the men’s basketball team at the University of Dayton.
With the change, regulators can permanently ban or place a sports bettor on an involuntary exclusion list if they harass or threaten an athlete. This type of ruling has never been made before and would provide a form of protection for athletes in all sports.
The provision states that the Commission can include an individual from sports betting in the state if they made a threat related to sports gaming before, during, or after a sporting event. Laws already exist to thwart this behavior, but this change gives the Commission more tools to tackle the problem.
Threats via social media towards players can result in a permanent ban from all types of legalized sports betting. The names of those participating in the threats would be sent to all sportsbook operators in Ohio.
Harming the Integrity of Sports
When it comes to legalized sports betting, a great deal of emphasis is placed on the integrity of the sport in question. Rules are in place to ensure that players do not wager on their team or other teams in the state or sometimes bet in general.
The goal is to ensure that a game’s integrity is not questioned. Matches should be fair and ensure a solid outcome without outside interference. With threats to players, it can easily affect the outcome of a game. A bettor might threaten a player on their performance, which could cause that individual to play better or worse than they would.
Hopefully, with this measure in place, Ohio will see fewer threats made to college-age and professional athletes. An example of threats took place involving the Dayton Flyers team. The basketball team saw young members threatened after a loss to Virginia Commonwealth. This behavior is unacceptable, and the new rule change should help stop individuals from making harmful threats.