One of the spring start-up leagues in the past few years had this as part of its game broadcasts. Maybe USFL? It was fascinating to listen to the replay official go through the play while speaking to the on-field officials.
It’s going to happen. Casting lots (which is where the word lottery came from) is even referenced in the Bible, including the Roman soldiers who divided up Jesus’ garments. So you can pretend it isn’t there, which we did for decades which led to all kinds of problems (the Black Sox scandal, Kentucky shaved points on hoop games, etc.), or you can legalize it, monitor it and tax the hell out of it.
One thing I did not know until just now: three UK players were charged with shaving points in their 57-53 win over the Hogs in 1950 in Little Rock. The charges were filed in New York, strangely enough; neither Kentucky nor Arkansas had laws against point shaving at that time. As a result of all that, Kentucky had a one-season death penalty in 1952-53, which I did know about.
I disagree. The old way was asking for trouble. The casinos/sportsbooks in Vegas and elsewhere are the best friend of the NCAA and the pro leagues in monitoring shady activity. They don’t want games fixed either; it costs them money. And they have sophisticated methods of monitoring betting patterns that tip them off to potential funny business. It’s going to be a lot harder in the future to fix games or induce point shaving. Tim Donaghy probably couldn’t have done what he did in this current climate.
Would it be better if nobody bet on sports? Probably. It would be better if spouses didn’t cheat on each other as well, or nobody used marijuana or any other recreational drug, or any of a myriad of other human failings.
It’s a football game, man, and you should not need any other incentive. However, I must admit that it is not an easy choice of which elixir since our friend from the bluegrass no longer provides us with his expert advice.