Betting On Sports: Completely Valid

by Agastya Vaidya | Posted on Friday, July 31st, 2015

Watching sports with friends and family has always an American pastime, especially when it comes to team sports such as football, baseball, and basketball. Subliminally, sports betting and gambling has also been one of America’s greatest pastimes, particularly in sports such as boxing and horse racing. Despite this, sports betting remains a controversial issue which has been strictly prohibited in the majority of  professional sports leagues. Why? Is it morally wrong to be so passionate towards a team to an extent that you feel it necessary to bet on their success? Moreover, is it wrong for a player of a team do this?

It’s understandable for this rule to apply to college games for if a NCAA player/college student were to lose their assertion they could possibly be in a large number of debt and not pay for college, but for professional athletes one should look at this differently. A professional athlete, who gets paid millions of dollars and is already given the responsibility by his organization to not use the money on drugs and other harmful items, can be disciplined by his sports league for betting on his team’s success but will not be penalized if he spends all his money on ridiculous items which could potentially be twice as expensive.

For this very reason, professional sports’ stance on players betting is completely obsolete. Years ago, when players were not paid as lavishly as they are today, betting would be a concern. But now, for these millionaire athletes, it’s as easy as going on, registering in a few moments, and betting  within minutes. What’s more important is that nowadays, athletes take more precaution over handling money due to examples of bankrupt athletes in the names of Allen Iverson, Mike Tyson, and Marion Jones.

The argument of whether athletes should be disciplined for betting/gambling over sports is really a matter of common sense. These athletes are regular people too, human like the rest of us (even though their play may suggest otherwise). This false idea that betting is such a horrendous crime which should allow for Hall of Fame players such as Pete Rose to be ineligible to even be on the ballot should be dismissed .

In some ways, the rule itself is ruining the sport more than gambling would. Sticking to my Pete Rose example, a player of his caliber, to have set the all-time record for hits in a career and not even be given the opportunity to be recognized for his accomplishment is sickening. For years, sports fans have been obdurate in changing the rules involving this controversial issue but clearly, they aren’t doing nearly enough to cause a difference. A change may not be seen anytime soon, but can certainly be achieved if people continue to voice their opinions.

About the Author

Hey I'm Agastya from NY. I write about baseball. Follow me on twitter @Agastyavaidya

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