Tag Archives: ncaa

Kitman Labs, Iowa State Partner on Combined Medical Data and Performance Analytics Platform

Kitman Labs, the global enterprise SaaS platform providing the only single, centralized operating system for performance intelligence in Sports, today announced that Iowa State University will be deploying Kitman Labs’ iP: Intelligence Platform across all men’s and women’s varsity sports. They become the third current Big 12 Conference school to partner with Kitman labs, joining Baylor University and Texas Tech University.

Iowa State University will use the platform to centralize and combine student-athlete medical and performance data, providing appropriate Departmental Staff with a secure, comprehensive and real-time view of all athletes from a physical and mental health and wellness perspective. The platform will also enable collaboration between staff in the design and execution of individual rehab and training programs to unlock student-athlete progress and performance.

Beyond compliance, the Performance Medicine solution being deployed at Iowa State will help inform decision-making around medical assessments, diagnosis, treatment and return to play strategies. Iowa State University joins approximately 80 other NCAA universities who are currently using the technology from Kitman Labs.

“Like many other NCAA universities – Iowa State understands the urgency and critical nature of monitoring the physical and mental well being of its student-athletes and to ensure it’s utilizing every tool and resource necessary to support the holistic development of those students during their college tenure, while also developing them for life after school – either inside or outside of Sport,” said Kitman Labs Founder & CEO, Stephen Smith.

“At Iowa State, we realize that ultimate success includes the ability to communicate and share relevant information across all departments that impact student-athlete health, performance, and well-being as well as incorporating the various aspects of sports science which can allow for more informed decision making,” said Mark Coberley, Iowa State’s Associate Athletics Director for Sports Medicine.

“We performed a lengthy analysis of our options to incorporate a system that allows us to meet this vision,” he added. “We needed an all-encompassing system that was sensitive to our particular needs, desired outcomes and nuances across departments. We believe Kitman Labs was the leader in this area and will provide solutions for our vision. We are extremely pleased to partner with them.”

Kitman Labs has an established track record of working with top teams and athletes across a variety of sports, including soccer, basketball, rugby, and American football. The company’s technology is being used by some of the world’s most elite collegiate sports organizations, such as Michigan State University, Clemson University, University of Colorado among many others.

This expansion into NCAA institutions follows other recent business strategy moves Kitman Labs has undertaken. That includes the successful close of a $52M Series C funding round led by Guggenheim Investments, a global asset investment and advisory firm with more than $259 billion in assets under management and two strategic acquisitions of The Sports Office and Presagia Sports, both made in the last two years. The combined companies represent the industry’s largest network of elite and youth organizations (700+) and created the industry’s largest dataset of talent, performance, and medical data for all stages of the athlete lifecycle.

New York Mobile Handle Could Reach $400 Million For First NCAA Tournament

ew York already has hit the heights since launching mobile sports wagering in mid-January. Now the Empire State will make its first descent into madness.
March Madness, that is.

When the New York State Gaming Commission releases its full February figures, the state’s two monthly handles of 2022 will rank first (January) and second (February) in the all-time national post-PASPA era that began in 2018. Not everyone anticipated such a fast start, with many expecting New York to need time to mature before reaching the top of the list and becoming, in the words of Frank Sinatra, “A-number one.”

The Super Bowl, which is the largest single sports betting event in the U.S., has come and gone, and conventional wisdom suggests New York generated the highest handle of any state — but nobody knows for sure, since the NYSGC did not provide official handle and revenue figures from the game. March brings the NCAA Tournament, joining the Super Bowl in the top two of annual betting events and unmatched in terms of drama coming from all angles at a frenetic pace over the course of three-plus weeks.
The largest unofficial betting event in the form of office pools now takes center stage in legal fashion in New York. Eight mobile operators, entrenched to varying degrees, will offer Final Four futures wagers and more, plus various betting lines on up to 66 of the tournament’s 67 games.

After bettors showed a monstrous appetite for the Super Bowl, wagering will again be robust throughout the final two weekends of March and the first one in April. After examining weekly mobile handle figures in New York since launch, basketball-specific wagering across multiple states from 2019 through 2021, and other assorted factors as points of comparison, NY Online Gambling projects mobile betting handle in the Empire State on the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament will be between $375 million and $400 million.

That’s wagers to be placed at legal online sportsbooks in New York after the NCAA announced the seeds and brackets on Sunday. Using the industry standard win rate of 7%, mobile operator revenue from that handle would range from $26.3 million to $28 million. With New York’s 51% tax rate on mobile revenue, the state would receive between $13.4 million and $14.3 million.

The NCAA Tournament vs. The Super Bowl
Projecting the Empire State’s NCAA Tournament handle can be challenging. New York has generated weekly handle that would rank in the top 10 nationally for monthly handle every full week since launch. The nearly $360 million in handle for the week ending March 6 was the fourth week in five that New York has posted handle between $350 million and $360 million.

The outlier in that stretch was Super Bowl week, in which handle totaled $472.1 million. The NYSGC does not break out handle by sport or divulge any specific wagering information about the game, but the Super Bowl handle may have been at least $200 million. That is a reasonable, conservative estimate, given Nevada set an all-time high with nearly $180 million wagered on the game and New Jersey went from $117.4 million in 2021 to $143.7 million this year despite all those Manhattanites no longer needing to cross the Hudson River to place legal bets.

Is the Super Bowl relevant for March Madness comparisons? Yes and no. One can view the NCAA Tournament as a singular event, but it also consists of 67 single-game events. A more like-for-like comparison could be the NCAA Tournament and the NFL playoffs, in which 13 games are played.

The NYSGC launched on the weekend of Week 18 of the NFL regular season, producing an initial handle report of $171.3 million that covered only those two days. The six wild card round games the next week contributed to handle skyrocketing to $431.8 million in the first full week of wagering. The four divisional round games sparked another bump to $572.6 million.  Notably, the Buffalo Bills played in both rounds.

Weekly handle ebbed the week of the two conference title games, falling to $449 million without the Bills, but that was still 28.3% higher than the recent low-end baseline of $350 million per week.

Assumptions of a similar percentage spike for March Madness could prove faulty for a few reasons, most notably advertising. The NFL has inherent advantages over the NCAA, with nearly all of its postseason games airing on network television. The league is also a marketing leviathan capable of making any superstar a national hero, recognized from the city where he plays to the casual fan hundreds of miles away who simply enjoys football.

This past NFL season, sportsbooks spent gobs of money to advertise their product, with the ability to promote themselves as “official league partners” or “approved sportsbook operators.” Of the eight mobile operators in New York, three (Caesars, DraftKings, and FanDuel) are official league partners and three others (BetMGM, PointsBet, and WynnBET) are approved sportsbook operators.

That advertising spend will not take place during the college basketball games broadcast on CBS and other stations. For starters, the NCAA does not have partnerships with gaming operators, and very few schools do.

cover image: credit Flickr/Steve Cheng, Bruin Report

RealResponse Passes 100 Partners And 50,000 Athletes

RealResponse (@RealResponseHQ), the award winning leading safe and secure feedback, monitoring and anonymous reporting platform for athletic teams and organizations, today announced the addition of new colleges and universities to its fast-growing list, reaching the 100 partner milestone for the first time in the company’s short history. More than 50,000 athletes now have the ability to use RealResponse to share feedback, safely and securely report issues to coaches and administrators in real time for everything from mental health issues, social injustice concerns, COVID-19 policy infractions, misconduct, hazing, sexual harassment as well as using the system to highlight successes and best practices which might go otherwise unnoticed. Their work was recognized by the Charlotte Business Journal this month as one of the “Fifty Most Innovative Companies in the Region.”

“As we head towards a period of increased scrutiny and challenges for athletes in everything from the Olympics to the return to play in colleges big and small this fall, the pressure and challenges placed on athletes and coaches at all levels has never been greater, and we are proud to be able to work with this growing number of colleges, universities and organizations to document, address and most importantly, head off issues within any size programs,” said 31 year old David Chadwick, former Division I basketball player at Rice University and Valparaiso University and the founder of RealResponse. “We started this because we saw, and heard, the need to help the athletes speak, and to help coaches and administrators address issues safely and securely, and the response continues to speak loudly. We are thrilled to eclipse 100 partner institutions and welcome our recent members and look forward to additional news, partnerships and growth in the coming weeks.”

Recent additions to the growing number of partners for RealResponse includes: Boston College, Campbell University, Appalachian State University, Cal State Northridge, UNC Asheville, and Arkansas State University. They join a list that has schools from the Major Five Conferences (Wake Forest, the University of Maryland, Ole Miss, TCU) as well as mid major schools (Army, Georgetown, Grand Canyon, and Liberty) and schools from Division II and III (Cal State Monterey Bay, Western New England, Bowdoin). RealResponse has also begun working actively outside the collegiate space with organizations like the NFLPA, National Governing Bodies like USA Gymnastics and others, and will be expanding with other relationships in the coming months.  

“We are living in a very changing, dynamic time, for intercollegiate athletics and the world in general. Within our athletics department we challenge our coaches, staff, and even our student-athletes to question whether just because we have been doing something one way does not mean we need to keep doing it. Is there another better way? Or are we missing something?  And that is where RealResponse came in,”    said Janet Cone, Director of Athletics, UNC Asheville. “We wanted to give our student-athletes an easy to use and real time tool to provide us with critical information . We are now very confident that the anonymous aspect is going to allow us to gather more information. Instead of someone hesitating and trying to decide, ‘Should I go forward or not?’ They know they can send a message to us. And we now have some information that  we did not know that can help us address concerns and issues.” For more on UNC Asheville’s partnership click here.

Three other athletic directors, two in the Big 12 Conference, the other in the ACC, also reaffirmed their growing support of RealResponse:

“RealResponse is used extensively by our Leadership Team, especially our Sport Administrators. The Survey Platform streamlined how we collect feedback and measure our student-athlete experiences, both internally and benchmarked against national trends,” added Jamie Pollard, Director of Athletics, Iowa State University. “The Real-Time Reporting has created an open and safe channel for our administration to stay responsive to student-athlete needs. Lastly, the Documentation Repository has allowed our team to centralize and manage important notes and communications in the daily execution of our departmental processes. It has truly become an essential part of our operations, and I would recommend RealResponse to any peer. 

“RealResponse has been tremendous for Baylor University. Student-athletes can approach us anonymously and I can still communicate back, creating a safe environment while offering key resources such as Title IX, Equity, and Mental Health Services. Importantly, these conversations are automatically captured, and the documentation trail and timeline generated provide peace of mind to our department,“ said Dawn Rogers, Deputy Director of Athletics, Baylor University

“Protecting the health and safety of our student-athletes and the integrity of the institution are paramount responsibilities for an Athletics Director. RealResponse is an invaluable tool to help identify student-athlete needs and concerns – and determine the right administrative response – before they escalate into a crisis,” added John Currie, Director of Athletics, Wake Forest University

Dedication to Community launches partnership with South Carolina State University Athletics

Dedication to Community (D2C), a national non-profit that educates and empowers communities on diversity, belonging, and equity, today announced a historic partnership with South Carolina State University (SCSU) to create and implement an extensive awareness and action strategy for all of SCSU’s 270 student-athletes, staff and coaches.

The Edwin R. Woodriffe Partnership, an interactive program scheduled to begin this summer, will include on-site training, and customized interactive sessions and speakers. D2C’s growing college presence has included dozens of institutions of higher education, including Boston College, Harvard University, University of Maryland College Park, Seton Hall University, University of North Carolina Charlotte, St. John’s University School of Law and other Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

“These on-campus programs to educate and listen beautifully to student-athletes will be vital to the process of bringing communities together and developing life skills that will resonate well beyond the field of play,” said M. Quentin Williams, D2C founder and CEO. “SCSU is a key starting point for us, especially given our powerful bond with Pro Football Hall of Famer and SC State Trustee Donnie Shell. Mr. Shell believes in D2C’s mission and we are excited about initiating our heightened focus on HBCU’s with the brilliant students, faculty and staff at SCSU.

“Additionally, the D2C family is honored to support the legacy of Agent Edwin R. Woodriffe, the only black FBI Agent to be killed in the line of duty, as an integral part of this initiative,” Williams said.

SC State President James E. Clark said D2C’s commitment to diversity and social justice is in keeping with the university’s mission and ideals.

“The actions of Mr. Williams will make a difference for student-athletes across the nation,” Clark said, “and we are tremendously grateful that the SC State campus community will be on the forefront of this crucial endeavor.

“We also are indebted to Trustee Shell for his role in this partnership, which is just one example of his steadfast and comprehensive dedication to SC State and our student-athletes,” the SC State president said.

The Edwin R. Woodriffe Partnership model will contain four sessions for the fall and four sessions for the spring with all student-athletes, campus student leaders and coaches attending in the semester when they are not actively playing and training. The sessions will include training on cultural awareness and shifting perspectives related to social justice with an emphasis on empowerment through voting, interacting with law enforcement at traffic stops, the power of social media and D2C’s “Recipe for Reconciliation.”

The interactive discussions will embrace a reflection on the Derek Chauvin trial, the plight of people of color, including African American civilians, who have lost their lives during encounters with law enforcement and the real-life experiences of the attendees. Additionally, there will be a transition program entitled, “When the Cheering Stops and Lights Go Out,” to help prepare the students athletes for their inevitable move from college athletics to their life’s next chapter, encompassing self-identity and positive reinforcement in their post-athletic career.

D2C’s next step with HBCUs starting at SCSU is a natural fit given Shell’s work with both organizations. A SCSU graduate and member of the school’s Board of Trustees, Shell is also an executive advisor for D2C, a role that he embraced in the Fall of 2020 and brings significant experience as a legendary athlete, professional mentor, and spiritual and civic leader.

A member of both the Pro Football and College Football Halls of Fame, Shell won four Super Bowl championships with the Pittsburgh Steelers among other highlights in his 14-year playing career. From 1994 to 2009, he directed player development for the Carolina Panthers, ensuring financial education, family assistance, internships and continuing education for players. After the NFL, Donnie served as director of the Spiritual Life Center at Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, N.C., where he focused on programs to inspire change while enriching the religious, spiritual and intellectual lives of students.

“It brings me great pleasure to see two organizations, my alma mater South Carolina State and Dedication to Community, commit to working together to do good,” Shell said. “There is a great need today to unite, listen, and learn from each other, and that’s what SCSU and D2C are all about; cooperative relationships, progressive thought and helping us all move forward with the challenges we continue to face.”

Shell established the Donnie Shell Scholarship Foundation, and along with the D2C Sports Division head Lamonte Winston, at one time was the namesake for the NFL’s Winston/Shell Award recognizing the League’s Most Outstanding Player Development Director/Program. In September 2020, D2C expanded its reach to involve professional, collegiate, and K-12 athletes, having Shell join Winston (former director of player engagement and Development, Kansas City Chiefs and Oakland Raiders) to further expand the foundation’s capabilities.

Shortly thereafter, Williams announced a historic partnership with the Miami HEAT and the City of Miami Police Department and, in February 2021, launched a partnership with veteran PGA TOUR golfer Kirk Triplett.

Additional D2C partnerships tied to athletes, universities and teams are expected to be announced in the coming weeks. To date, D2C has continued to expand its work with law enforcement agencies in several states across the U.S., including Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Missouri, Michigan, Ohio, the Carolinas, and at the FBI National Academy in Virginia, where Williams has been an instructor.

ShotTracker Names Bill Moses Chief Executive Officer As Part Of Company Executive Restructuring

DDSports Inc. (ShotTracker), a revolutionary basketball technology that captures via sensors stats and analytics with sub-second latency  and the leading tracking platform among NCAA schools, announced company executive restructuring in advance of a host of upcoming strategic business partnership announcements.

The Board of Directors has brought on veteran sports data industry leader Bill Moses as Chief Executive Officer, while company founder Davyeon Ross will continue with the company as the COO and President. The company’s co-founder, Bruce Ianni, has chosen to depart to pursue other opportunities.  In addition, two other sports business and tech veterans, Tom Masterman and Jason Tilton, have joined the company as VP of Sales and VP of Corporate Development, respectively

“It is a pleasure to join the ShotTracker team to help advance the commercial business opportunities of one of the most innovative and transformative companies in the data and technology side at the NCAA level,” Moses said. “The foundation partnerships with some of the most elite colleges and universities have been built, and we are now ready to push forward with growing that base and expanding the commercial and tactical opportunities in basketball and in other sports with a host of new partners coming on line in the months ahead.”

“Our technology continues to be some of the most widely embraced and supported by college programs across the nation for both men’s and women’s basketball,” Ross said. “Having Bill’s wealth of experience in monetizing and expanding data content, as well as his deep and well respected relationships in media, marketing and technology will be invaluable as we advance and continue to disrupt the marketplace in 2021 and beyond.”

A New Jersey native and University of Virginia graduate, Moses brings with him to ShotTracker his vast experience in working at the nexus of technology and media, entertainment and sports. After serving at the NFL as the Senior VP of International and New Media, Bill joined IBM as the Vice President of Broadband Distribution where he co-authored the IBM digital media strategy and was responsible for developing and executing the company’s corporate strategy in broadband industries.

While at IBM, Moses also held the position of Vice President of Broadcast, Cable and Sports for the company’s Global Telecommunications and Media Division. In that role, he created and launched ventures that resulted in the PGA.com and NHL.com internet sites, ushering the sports business and leagues into the new media age during the 1990’s. He was one of the first to deploy computer-based scoring systems across many of the leagues and helped launch the age of data analytics.

Masterman has spent two decades in sports technology and digital media, with a focus on enterprise sales and partnerships. Prior to ShotTracker, he was Global Head of Publisher Sales at Genius Sports Group, driving data integrations with clients including NBC Sports and USA Today. Tom was also the founding sales and marketing executive for SportsData, which sold to global leader Sportradar. As Chief Revenue Officer, he led the acquisition of enterprise clients including Google, Twitter and Turner Sports. Tom began his career as an Emmy-nominated TV producer and has had several management roles in digital media.

Tilton joins ShotTracker from Genius Sports Group as well, where he was Commercial Partnerships Manager. Prior to working with Genius on their North American business, he was Video Coordinator with the Phoenix Suns and has spent time on the basketball administration side at Long Beach State University and St. John’s University.

ShotTracker currently has relationships with more than 63 Division I men’s and women’s basketball programs and has a growing relationship with Learfield IMG College and their partner schools. The Learfield IMG College sponsorship teams can provide local, regional and national brands visibility associated with ShotTracker’s cutting-edge technology via scoreboard integration, digital/social platforms and experiential activations. Additionally, a growing number of schools with official athletic websites and mobile apps powered by SIDEARM Sports are adding ShotTracker technology integrated into the website and app. The crossover content provides another opportunity for brand visibility and bolsters the second-screen experience for fans.  Broadcasters are also now increasing the use of the depth and breadth of ShotTracker real time data to enhance their broadcasts.

BIG EAST Esports Partners With MAAC, Electronic Gaming Federation In Rocket League Competition

BIG EAST esports teams will play against opponents from the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) in a Rocket League tournament for bragging rights.

Participating teams for the BIG EAST are Butler, DePaul, Creighton, Marquette, St. John’s, Seton Hall and Xavier. It will be Creighton’s debut appearance as part of BIG EAST Esports. Participating teams from the MAAC are Fairfield, Marist, Niagara, Quinnipiac and Siena.

Seeding is based on the current standings in the fall EGF Collegiate season which started Oct. 5. Marist and Fairfield from the MAAC take the top two seeds, respectively:

Competition is set to begin on Sunday, Dec. 13. The Electronic Gaming Federation (EGF) will be operating the event. Teams will compete in a best of five format, three vs. three. There are 11 games in the tournament with the first round starting at noon ET.  The top four seeds received a bye to the second round. The semifinals begin at 3 p.m. with the final at 4:30 p.m. The matches can be viewed on either Twitch.tv on either the OfficialEGF channel or the EGFrocketleague channel. Links are in the schedule below.

1 MAAC Marist
2 MAAC Fairfield
3 BIG EAST Xavier
4 BIG EAST Seton Hall
5 BIG EAST Butler
6 MAAC Quinnipiac
8 BIG EAST Marquette
9 MAAC Siena
10 BIG EAST St. John’s
11 MAAC Niagara
12 BIG EAST Creighton


Sunday, Dec. 13

Round 1

Game 1: No. 8 Marquette vs. No. 9 Siena, Noon (OfficialEGF)

Gm 2: No. 5 Butler vs. No. 12 Creighton, Noon (EGFrocketleague)

Gm 3: No. 7 DePaul vs. No. 10 St. John’s, 12:45 p.m. (OfficialEGF)

Gm 4: No. 6 Quinnipiac vs. No. 11 Niagara, 12:45 p.m. (EGFrocketleague)

Round 2

Gm 5: No. 1 Marist vs. No. 8 Marquette/No. 9 Siena, 1:30 p.m. (OfficialEGF)

Gm 6: No. 4 Seton Hall vs. No. 5 Butler/No. 12 Creighton, 1:30 p.m. (EGFrocketleague)

Gm 7: No. 2 Fairfield vs. No. 7 DePaul/No. 10 St. John’s, 2:15 p.m. (OfficialEGF)

Gm 8: No. 3 Xavier vs. No. 6 Quinnipiac/No. 11 Niagara, 2:15 p.m. (EGFrocketleague)


Gm 9: Winners of Game 5 vs. Game 6, 3 p.m. (OfficialEGF)

Gm 10: Winners of Game 7 vs. Game 8, 3:45 p.m. (OfficialEGF)


Winners of Game 9 vs. Game 10, 4:30 p.m. (OfficialEGF)

BIG EAST Conference Selects EGF As Its Esports Governance, Marketing And Distribution Partner

Today, the BIG EAST Conference and the Electronic Gaming Federation (EGF) announced a three-year agreement that will enable all 11 member schools to compete in a year-long multigame season for the first time as official EGF Collegiate (EGFC) league members. EGFC is the national Division I Varsity Esports League with a growing number of schools bringing their own elite teams together to vie for National Championships across a number of game titles.

The EGFC Season begins October 5 and features nationwide intercollegiate competition in two eight-week splits as well as conference championships, regional playoffs and the EGFC National Championship to be held April 24-25, 2021. Expanded titles include: Rocket League, Overwatch, SSBU and FIFA. Broadcasts of all matches will be streamed on EGF’s 5 Twitch channels, the BIG EAST YouTube channel and various institutional platforms.

The BIG EAST members, located in eight of the country’s top 36 largest media markets, include Butler University, University of Connecticut, Creighton University, DePaul University, Georgetown University, Marquette University, Providence College, St. John’s University, Seton Hall University, Villanova University and Xavier University.

“We’re very excited that the relationship BIG EAST esports has enjoyed with EGF will be continuing for the next three years with league membership across many titles,” said BIG EAST Commissioner Val Ackerman. “We’re grateful for the outstanding leadership EGF provides annually to collegiate esports and look forward to partnering to bring compelling rivalry matches and broadcasts to our fans around the country.”

“We are honored to have earned the trust and respect of all the BIG EAST schools and conference leadership,” said Eric Johnson, CEO, EGF. “EGF is attracting teams who want to play against the biggest and best programs across the country for a national championship, want to have a voice and a stake in their governance, and want a partner who has the students’ passions as the top priority.

In addition to the BIG EAST’s conference wide affiliation with EGF, a growing number of other colleges and Universities are selecting EGF not only based on their competitive governance, but their commitment to serving esports communities and teams on campus and virtually through strategic partnerships, educational development, wellness, diversity and inclusion and industry leadership programs.

The esports (competitive video games) has generated more than $1 billion globally in 2019 and is expanding exponentially throughout 2020. By 2022, the growth of esports from a competition and viewer standpoint is expected to exceed 300 million participants. Division I collegiate programs began in earnest in 2015 and now feature more than 100 teams in the U.S.

Covers Predicts That Sports Betting Won’t Go Bust If College Football Is Canceled

As COVID-19 continues to reshape upcoming seasons for professional and collegiate sports, Covers asks the burning question, what will the impact be on sports betting if the 2020 college football season is canceled?

Covers’ Senior Writer Patrick Everson spoke with Executive Vice President of Race and Sports at the Superbook at Westgate, Jay Kornegay, the American Gaming Association’s Casey Clark, and gambling industry strategist Chris Grove, about the potential effects of a canceled or delayed college football season on sportsbooks across the country.

“I’m not sure any of us really knows how that will impact us,” Kornegay said, speaking to the sportsbook industry as a whole. “If it’s completely canceled, it’s certainly going to be a punch to the gut. However, it’s not as bad as some might think, as long as we still have the NFL. Last year, 65 percent of our total football handle was NFL.”

Some NCAA football betting statistics include:

  • Although sportsbooks don’t separate NFL versus NCAA football in terms of total handle (bets placed) on football, estimates are approximately 35% of total handle in Nevada came from NCAAF football in 2019.
  • Based on total handle on football in Nevada sportsbooks in 2019, approximately $650 million was bet on NCAAF football.
  • New Jersey took in $939 million in football handle in 2019 and given that same 35% estimate for college football action, over $328 million was bet on NCAA football in 2019 in New Jersey.
  • The best NCAAF football bets in 2019 were Kentucky and Navy, both went 10-3 Against the Spread.

Could the college football season be postponed to the spring? Many in the media and the sports betting space are speculating that a spring college football season would provide a huge boost on the wagering front. Among the main reasons for such speculation is that NCAA football wouldn’t be competing with the NFL every week.

College Sports Challenges, Uncertainty Make NIL Debate Even More Front And Center

Wikimedia Commons/Phil Roeder

We continue in unchartered waters in sports as many enter week four of the pandemic, and the college landscape remains as fluid as any. There is no shortage of opinion and conjecture, from spring sports eligibility to moving football to the 2022 are all on the table and the angst and viability of student athletes remains in flux.

Against all of that backdrop is the ongoing and vital debate about Name, Image and Likeness (NIL) and how that will factor into the business of college athletics going forward. How have things changed or adapted, and what would the opportunities be for athletes today if NIL as in place? One of the key advocates in NIL remains Zach Segal, who founded StudentPlayer.com last year as a platform to assist and recognize college athletes for their achievements on the field while tying them to brand opportunities, or in some cases, causes.  

We had some time to connect with Segal on how NIL is evolving, and how Student Player’s business platform has changed and adapted as well.

Does the opportunity for spring sports to add eligibility positively or negatively affect the NIL debate?

Any steps taken to promote fairness given these unprecedented times are good for the NIL debate. Afterall, allowing student athletes to benefit from their name, image, and likeness is not about giving student athletes an advantage relative to other students it is about treating them the equally! We hope that the longstanding inequity will be remedied soon!

How does a platform like student player impact a player prepping for the NFL Draft? once his eligibility end could he access funds if the system was up and running in say a year from now?

Student Player will offer sponsorship deals to student athletes when they are student athletes, but only after it is legal/permissible to do so. In our view, fans must have a voice and we give them the chance to be heard. Prospective athletes will want to know what kind of opportunities are available at each school, fans can make a difference by contributing! A player prepping for the NFL draft would still benefit from fan contributions while they are in college.

If NIL is in effect now how do you think athletes currently sidelined could use their rights for something like social good?

Yes, 100%. And we bet that many would! Today’s restrictions are essentially prohibiting that which is sad. Particularly so in a time when huge numbers of Americans (and others) are struggling to cope with Covid-19. This is just one reason why we hope school/legislatures/the NCAA won’t pause the momentum that NIL is having.

Without NIL in place this spring, have those athletes who missed March Madness suffered a loss of opportunity to capitalize on brand value? Can you think of a specific example?

Yes, March Madness shines a big spotlight on the athletes that play in it and the schools that they play for. There are missed opportunities across the board. Who would have hit a buzzer beater to help a double digit seed advance to the final four? We will never know, but that individual would have become a nationally recognized star. Who knows what would have happened next!

How do you see the debate moving in the fall when some normalcy returns; should we be looking for next steps?

We hope that it will pick up with as much momentum as it previously had. NIL is a bipartisan issue and a simple one.  In our view, the next step is for the NCAA to adopt California’s Fair Pay To Play Act. The NCAA and its member schools have long held that student athletes are “students first.” We agree! Given that, the solution is simple: treat student athletes like students. There are often mentions of “guardrails” and other safeguards, but we see all of those things as unnecessary. The goal should be to afford student athletes the same opportunities that every other student already has. Guardrails and safeguards should only be included if they are applied equally to all students (athlete or not).

March Madness Pushes New Jersey Sportsbooks to Record Month, According to PlayNJ.com

U.S. Air Force photo by Michelle Gigante

New Jersey’s online and retail sportsbooks scored a record win and near-record monthly handle in March as the industry crossed the $2 billion mark in bets since legalization. The spike was fueled overwhelmingly by the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, according to PlayNJ.com analysts.

“The first week of March Madness generated more action than the Super Bowl, and even the First Four games attracted enough betting to rival a busy weekend of NFL regular season football,” said Dustin Gouker, lead sports betting analyst for PlayNJ.com. “That is unquestionably a massive success and shows clearly the importance of college basketball to the Northeast’s legal sports betting markets.”

New Jersey’s online and retail sportsbooks accepted $372.5 million in March bets, just shy of the record $385.3 million in January, according to official reporting. New Jersey’s online and retail sportsbooks have now accepted $2.3 billion in bets since legalization in June 2018.

March revenue was $31.7 million, up 150 percent from $12.7 million in February. The win and a high-water gross revenue mark for the state’s online casinos combined in March to generate more than $70 million in monthly revenue.

“$2 billion in bets in nine months shows just how much pent-up demand for legal sports betting existed in New Jersey,” Gouker said. “As quickly as the industry has ramped up, though, the next milestone should come more quickly. $3 billion is certainly within reach by the industry’s first anniversary in June.”

New Jersey’s online sportsbook brands accounted for $298,3 million, or 80.8 percent, of total March bets. That’s even with the 80.8 percent of bets that flowed through online sportsbooks in February.

FanDuel Sportsbook/Pointsbet was the dominant online sportsbook, beating rival DraftKings Sportsbook, with $13.3 million in gross revenue, up from $6.59 million in February. DraftKings fueled Resorts’ $7.3 million in March, up from $3.7 million in February.

FanDuel Sportsbook at The Meadowlands remained tops in the retail market with $4.3 million in March gross revenue, up from $1.5 million in February. Monmouth Park followed FanDuel with $986,251.

“Online sports betting will continue to drive the market, and product innovations will likely bear much more fruit in the near future,” Gouker said. “New Jersey’s sportsbooks already offer the most advanced online product of any legal sports betting jurisdiction, and bettors have continually responded.”

PointsBet Announces Good Karma Payout, Refunds Bettors on Duke vs. UCF Game

Unsplash/Marcus Spiske

Top-tier sportsbook operator PointsBet today announced a Good Karma Payout in response to last night’s Duke vs. UCF game, after a dramatic, unexpected and heartbreaking ending with a missed tip-in by Aubrey Dawkins, that led the Duke on a continued path for the championship. PointsBet’s Good Karma Payout has refunded all UCF moneyline bets in the form of bonus bets as part of the payout.

Good Karma Payout, which provides bettors relief in the event of unlikely circumstances that sway the fate of the game, is yet another feature in PointsBet’s offering that proves the company has the back of the bettor. The sportsbook is also offering refunds to sports fans who backed UCF via other sportsbooks and didn’t receive refunded wagers on the game. Bettors will just need to sign up with code KARMA and send PointsBet their bet slip through social media to receive up to $100 in bonus bets.

“PointsBet’s Karma Kommittee knew this morning’s meeting was going to be eventful following last night’s heart-wrenching finish,” said PointsBet U.S. CEO Johnny Aitken. “We know how wildly disappointing a loss like that feels, and we’re here to have the back of all bettors when the outcome of a game just isn’t fair. This Good Karma Payout gives bettors a chance to redeem themselves as March Madness continues on.”

PointsBet has previously announced Good Karma Payouts as a result of the Karma Kommittee meetings, most recently for the Duke vs. UNC game, where Zion Williamson left with an ankle injury after 33 seconds. The Karma Kommittee also refunded all bets in January’s notorious blown pass interference call in the Saints vs. Rams NFC Championship game.

To begin betting with PointsBet, visit www.PointsBet.com. New customers will receive a free $25 bonus bet (no deposit required). In addition, new users will be given the opportunity to place two risk-free bets, with coverage up to $1,000. Customers will have up to $500 in losses covered for both their first traditional wager and their first PointsBetting wager, designed to give bettors a chance to try out PointsBet’s signature offering risk-free.

West Virginia, Duke, Tennessee Most Exciting CBB Squads

Lamonte Turner (UT Basketball)

Thuuz Sports, the most powerful automated video highlights production platform for worldwide sports, today announced their 2018-19 Top 10 most exciting games for the men’s basketball season. Despite not making the NCAA Tournament, The University of West Virginia, by virtue of their February 26 win over TCU, topped the list. The Mountaineers, appeared twice on the list, just behind Tennessee and Duke, who are each on the list for three games. The regular season matchup between top seeds Duke and Gonzaga also qualified in the Top 10.

Using their custom designed algorithms to measure real-time event excitement, Thuuz will provide a unique look into what games have gotten fans the most excited and engaged as 2019 rolls along.  

The game excitement ratings are measured on a 0 to 100 scale and take into consideration game pace, team parity, play novelty, momentum shifts, social buzz, and historical context. The algorithms behind the excitement ratings are statistically calibrated to insure the appropriate distribution of ratings across the duration of a season or course of a tournament.

Using the Thuuz excitement measurement platform, the top ten most exciting games were:

1) West Virginia 104, TCU 96 (Big 12): 2/26/19

         WVU outlasted TCU in a triple OT showdown in Big 12 conference play. WVU had 4 players play over 50 minutes in the game, led by Derek Culver who ended the game with 22 points and 21 rebounds. This is the only game in the top 10 that was between 2 teams that did not make March Madness.

2) Duke 71, Louisville 69 (ACC): 2/12/19

         Louisville was winning 59-36 with under 10 min left in the 2nd half, before Zion Williamson and Duke began a massive comeback that ended in a 2-point victory. Duke freshman Cam Reddish made 2 FT’s with 15 seconds remaining to give Duke their 1st lead since they were up 21-20 in the 1st half. A defensive stand after those FT’s led to an improbable Duke victory.

3) Tennessee 76, Gonzaga 73 (NCAA): 12/9/18

         A battle between two veteran-heavy teams came down to the wire as Rui Hachimura and Gonzaga came up just short against 2-time SEC player of the year Grant Williams and Tennessee. Admiral Schofield was the standout performer for Tennessee with 30 points and 6 rebounds as Tennessee picked up a great non-conference win against the #1 seed in the West in Gonzaga.

4) Duke 74, UNC 73 (ACC): 3/15/19

         The two heated rivals faced off for the 3rd time this season after the Tar Heels had won both regular season games. The difference between this game and the 1st two was that Duke didn’t have their star freshman and likely #1 pick in the upcoming NBA draft, Zion Williamson. In his first full game against UNC, he posted 31 points and 11 rebounds as Duke defeated UNC and went on to win the ACC Championship, with Zion being named MVP.

5) Gonzaga 89, Duke 87: 11/21/18

         A matchup between two #1 seeds in March Madness went down to the wire in what remains Duke’s only loss of the season with Zion Williamson, RJ Barrett, and Cam Reddish all on the floor for a full game. Gonzaga was led by recently announced 1st team All-American Rui Hachimura, who had 20 points, 7 rebounds, and 5 assists. He out-dueled Duke’s 1st team All-American duo in Barrett and Williamson, who both had 20+ points in the loss.

6) West Virginia 79, Texas Tech 74 (Big 12): 3/14/19

         WVU became the only team to make it in this top-10 list twice and not be in March Madness by pulling off a major upset during the Big 12 tournament over Texas Tech. Two of the better players in the Big 12 battled it out in an entertaining matchup as Emmitt Matthews Jr (WVU) posted 28 points and 8 rebounds against likely NBA lottery pick Jarrett Culver, who had 26 points and 10 rebounds in the defeat.

7) Tennessee 82, Kentucky 78 (SEC): 3/16/19

         A back and forth affair between 2 of the top 3 teams in an SEC semifinal saw Tennessee edge Big Blue Nation behind their back-to-back SEC player of the year Grant Williams. Lamonte Turner hit the game-winning 3-pointer for the Vols with 30 seconds remaining after having previously been 0-14 in 3-pointers in his 2 prior games against Kentucky.

8) Arizona State 80 Kansas 76: 12/22/18

         Arizona State is one of the final teams in the field, and they can likely point to this monumental win over Kansas at home as the big reason why. Remy Martin (ASU) hit a pull-up jumper with just under a minute remaining to put ASU up 78-76 and become the 5th Sun Devil to reach double figures. That depth outlasted Kansas’ star Dedric Lawson who had an impressive 30 point, 14 rebound performance for the Jayhawks.

9) LSU 73, Kentucky 71 (SEC): 2/12/19

         LSU defeated Kentucky on a controversial buzzer-beating tip-in for their 1st win over Kentucky since 2009. This incredibly close game was within 5 points for the final 14 minutes of the game, as the 2 SEC rivals went back and forth in a conference showdown.

10) LSU 82, Tennessee 80 (SEC): 2/23/19

         After a crucial foul by Tennessee with less than a second remaining, LSU’s Ja’vonte Smart drained the go-ahead FT’s and as Tigers beat the Vols in OT. This was LSU’s 2nd victory in 2 weeks over a top-5 SEC team. Smart scored a career-high 29 points in the win.

First Year of Legal Sports Betting on March Madness in New Jersey Is Underway at PlaySugarHouse.com

Michael Nzei (Seton Hall Athletics)

Following Selection Sunday, the first year of legal sports betting in New Jersey for the NCAA Tournament is underway. To celebrate, PlaySugarHouse.com has announced a unique bracket promotion offering entrants a shot at their share of over $50,000 in payouts. For more information, click here.

Heading into Selection Sunday, Duke (+250), Gonzaga (+550), and Virginia (+600) were the betting favorites to win the National Championship. North Carolina joined those three teams as the final #1 seed in the Tournament, and collectively these #1 seeds are a remarkable 81-44-3 “Against the Spread” (ATS) on the season.

  • The most widely bet teams at PlaySugarHouse.com over the course of the season were #1 Duke (17-15 ATS), #2 Michigan (17-14 ATS), #2 Tennessee (15-14-1), #6 Villanova (20-12 ATS), and #1 North Carolina (20-9-3)  showing that this season, the most popular teams have also been good bets
  • The most popular game to bet this season was the matchup between Duke and North Carolina on February 20th. The second most popular game was on February 17th between Villanova and St. Johns, two teams with significant fan bases in New Jersey.
  • The best team ATS this season, Drake (25-6), did not make the NCAA tournament
  • Teams in the tournament with particularly poor ATS numbers are #15 Montana (12-18), #11 Ohio St. (13-19), and #10 Iowa (13-19)
  • PlaySugarHouse.com will be offering unique bets throughout the NCAA Tournament, including Zion Williamson prop bets and parlay bets with boosted odds payouts

“We are pleased to give New Jersey residents and visitors in the state their first chance to legally bet on the NCAA Tournament,” said  Mattias Stetz, COO, Rush Street Interactive.  “We’re especially excited to introduce our free to play March Mania bracket promotion, which will pay out entrants on each correct bracket pick, totaling over $50,000 in prizes over the course of the tournament.”

Americans Will Wager $8.5 Billion on March Madness

Americans plan to wager $8.5 billion on this year’s NCAA men’s basketball tournament, with 1-in-5 adults placing a bet, according to a new survey released today by the American Gaming Association (AGA).

Zion Williamson (Flickr/Keenan Hairston)

Key findings from the survey, conducted by Morning Consult, include:

  • 47 million American adults will wager $8.5 billion on March Madness;
  • $4.6 billion will be wagered on a collective 149 million brackets by more than 40 million people;
  • Nearly 18 million people will wager $3.9 billion at a sportsbook, online, with a bookie or with a friend;
    • 4.1 million will place a bet at a casino sportsbook or using a legal app;
    • 2.4 million will bet illegally with a bookie; and
    • 5.2 million will bet online, likely at illegal offshore sites.
  • The plurality of bettors favors Duke (29%) to win, followed by Gonzaga (9%), North Carolina(8%), Kentucky (7%), Virginia (5%) and Michigan (5%).

“During this year’s tournament – the first in post-PASPA America – sports fans are expected to bet 40% more than they did on this year’s Super Bowl,” said Bill Miller, AGA’s president and chief executive officer. “Unlike any other sporting event in the country, March Madness attracts millions who fill out brackets, make casual bets with friends or wager at a legal sportsbook, which Americans can now do more than ever before.”

Since the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in May 2018, more than $5.9 billion has been wagered in the now-eight states with legal, regulated sports betting, enabling consumer protections and generating valuable tax revenue for state, local and tribal governments across the country.

“These results indicate there’s still work to do to eradicate the vast illegal sports betting market in this country, and we’re committed to ensuring sound policies are in place to protect consumers, like the 47 million Americans who will bet on March Madness,” continued Miller.

Sports betting legalization is currently being considered in 23 states across the country.

SpeedBrackets App Gives Ability to Change Picks at Any Time – No More Busted Brackets

UMBC after its win over UVA in the 2018 NCAA First Round

Want a shot at one million dollars? Looking to have more fun playing fantasy sports? Do you want to have a chance to beat the competition – every time – up until the final buzzer, whistle or gun? Introducing SpeedBrackets, the new app that allows players to change their original pick at any point during a sporting event and still and have a chance to win. And to celebrate their launch, SpeedBrackets is offering a One Million Dollar Perfect Bracket Challenge for March Madness 2019. The best part? Even if you can’t be perfect, you can still compete and ensure you never lose another game the rest of the tournament. With SpeedBrackets, your brackets never bust, and you are never out of the game.

Initially conceived to solve the ‘busted brackets’ problem so often faced during the excitement of March Madness, with participants’ interest waning once they were eliminated (often in the first round). No matter what happens to your team throughout a game, you will be able to continuously adjust your picks to maximize your points as much as possible, even down to the last seconds.

How SpeedBrackets Works:

Users can customize competitions for individual rounds of a tournament or for the overall championship. At the end of each game, points are allotted on a leaderboard in real-time, allowing pool managers and their members to monitor instant results of first through last place. To get started, simply:

  • Register: Easily register and create your profile.
  • Join: Join pools or create your own. Invite all of your friends, family, coworkers, clients, customers, etc., with a simple email address. Many pools will award prizes at the completion of each tournament or playoff round, as well as for the total overall championship
  • Fill out your bracket. Pick your favorites from the “play-in” games to the championship.
  • Watch the games: SpeedBrackets makes the perfect “second-screen” while watching the action on TV or even live courtside. All the games and all their information on one screen, even the ones being played simultaneously, all on one screen.
  • Adjust your picks: Switch your selection of winning teams, right up to the last second of a game. Remember, the sooner you choose the correct winner, the more points you earn.
  • Notifications: Easily toggle notifications on or off for alerts, from “Games about to start in 5 minutes” or “Your team is losing with 5 minutes left in the game” And just in case you don’t switch a losing team and pick the winner, it conveniently reminds you that “Your bracket needs attention” – telling you that one of your teams lost and didn’t make it to the next round and you have to adjust your bracket.

SpeedBrackets’ Men’s College Basketball 2019 Championship app is currently available for free download from the App Store (iOS) and Google Play (Android). Please visit (https://speedbrackets.com/) to learn all about SpeedBrackets and how to take your fantasy sports experience to the next level.