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Volume 25 No. 61
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SEC's Sankey Says League Began Research On Gambling In '11

SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey yesterday at SEC Media Days in Atlanta said that his league "began to research sports gambling" in '11 and has been "corresponding with the NFL, NBA, MLB and PGA offices about the topic," according to Aaron Reiss of the K.C. STAR. Sankey is "not opposed to requiring teams to release injury reports." However, he said that such a move "likely won’t happen this season, and whenever those reports do start coming out, they won’t be just like NFL injury reports." Sankey: "FERPA and HIPAA requirements, academic suspensions, other team or athletics department-imposed suspensions and NCAA eligibility issues make something more like an availability report relevant for discussion." Sankey said that the conference has "not hired a service to monitor fishy gambling activity on the league’s games yet, but doing so remains 'a topic of conversation'" (K.C. STAR, 7/17).

SOONER OR LATER: In Birmingham, Michael Casagrande noted the Supreme Court ruling that cleared the way for legalized sports gambling is "no doubt the catalyst" for Sankey's idea of releasing injury reports. It is a "matter of time before something happens." The Big Ten in June "proposed to the NCAA's football oversight committee the idea of creating such injury reports." Sankey: "I expect, however, the change in sports gambling could be and will be likely the impetus for the creation of such reports" (AL.com, 7/16). In St. Louis, Dave Matter writes Sankey "sounds open to the concept of mandated injury reports," but the league "won’t rush into a system that’s not carefully vetted." Sankey said, "If this is to happen, we have one opportunity to get it right" (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 7/17). When asked if there is an outlined plan for the conference if states that have SEC schools legalize sports betting, Sankey said that there was "not a plan and reiterated how the conference is monitoring the potential situations" (Columbus LEDGER-ENQUIRER, 7/17). 

HOSTING DUTIES: In Atlanta, Tim Tucker notes the SEC Media Days had been "held in Birmingham or neighboring Hoover, Ala., every year" since '85 and are "scheduled to return to Hoover next year." Sites for '20 and beyond "haven’t been determined, but the SEC envisions moving the event around to various parts of the conference footprint." The Dallas area is "considered a likely destination, and Atlanta officials hope to persuade the league to return the event here in some future year." Sankey said holding the event in Atlanta “reminds us of this city’s important place in the history" of the conference (ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION, 7/17).