The Extent and Nature of Gambling Among College Student Athletes


o Table of Contents
o Executive Summary
o Introduction
o Review of the Literature
o Methodology
o Results
o Discussion
o Conclusion
o Bibliography
o Biography
o Acknowledgements
o Contact Information
o Purchase Copy


Gambling threatens to undermine the integrity of intercollegiate athletics, student athletes, and their sponsoring institutions perhaps more than any other single aberrant behavior. University of Iowa Head Football Coach Hayden Fry recently reflected on the threat of gambling to the integrity of college sports, stating "[gambling] is the number one priority for college coaches in all sports" (Kramer, 1998). It is not just legalized gambling that poses the significant problem. Law enforcement officials estimate that three to five times more money is bet illegally on sports events and with bookmakers than is wagered legally (Lorenz and Yaffee, 1988). Since 1996 the number of highly publicized gambling incidents among student athletes at colleges and universities has increased substantially. According to a study by Cullen and Latessa (1996), 25% of National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I football and basketball players who participated in their research said that they had bet on college sports.

Despite a history of gambling problems throughout intercollegiate sports during the last forty years, there has been limited formal research into this controversial area. Much of the evidence of gambling behavior by student athletes is anecdotal and comes from police or media reports that likely represent only the tip of the iceberg. Similarly, Cullen and Latessa's (1996) often-quoted data on student athletes' gambling rates was in response to just three questions in a broader study about NCAA rules violations. The present study seeks to amend and extend this scant literature.

Specifically, this study is designed to determine:

  1. the types of gambling activities in which student athletes engage; and
  2. the extent to which student athletes participate in these gambling activities.


Table of Contents | Executive Summary | Introduction | Review of the Literature | Methodology | Results
Discussion | Conclusion | Bibliography | Biography | Acknowledgements | Contact Information