SBD/Issue 164/Leagues & Governing Bodies

NFL Asks Delaware Supreme Court To Block Sports Betting Law

Goodell Has Written Delaware Governor
Expressing His Dislike For Betting Proposal
The NFL has filed a legal brief in Delaware Supreme Court against a proposal to legalize sports betting in the state, which "could be a precursor to a lawsuit," according to a front-page piece by Cris Barrish of the Wilmington NEWS JOURNAL. The NFL argues that "skill 'plays an impermissible' role in sports betting, disqualifying such games as a lottery determined mainly by chance." If the court rules that sports betting "as envisioned by [Gov. Jack] Markell and the legislature is more skill than chance, the proposal could fail to pass constitutional muster." The NFL's brief was filed "in conjunction with two others sought from outside attorneys" by Delaware Chief Justice Myron Steele. The court on May 21 will hear oral arguments on the issue "as they weigh whether the new law passes constitutional muster." A measure approving sports betting and table games was approved by the Delaware state House last night, and Markell said that he "plans to sign the bill into law this week." NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell in March wrote to Markell, "expressing his displeasure with the gambit that Markell said he took to help balance the state's ailing budget." The NCAA also has "fought the sports betting legislation and has threatened to prevent Delaware schools from hosting bowl games if the state" proceeds with the legalization. However, Markell argued that "betting on college games in Delaware would be banned," and pointed out that the NCAA allowed the Univ. of Montana to host an FCS playoff game "even though that state has sports betting" (Wilmington NEWS JOURNAL, 5/13).

QUICK SENATE APPROVAL: In Delaware, Ginger Gibson reports the state Senate yesterday passed the "controversial gaming bill" by a 17-2 margin. The quick approval was a "stark contrast to the reception it received last week in the House." State Sen. Colin Bonini, one of two dissenting voters, said that he "voted against the bill partially because of the warning from the NCAA" about bowl games (Wilmington NEWS JOURNAL, 5/13).

Return to top
Video Powered By - Castfire CMS Powered By - Sitecore

Report a Bug