“Although, that wouldn’t make it much fun for the gamblers or for the media.”

Ah, the tension.

Right now, there is no standard in the NCAA for discussing player injuries.

“My university’s attorney told me, ‘You cannot be specific with any injuries. You can say upper body. You can say lower body,'” said Todd Berry, who coached college football for 34 years and is now executive director of the American Football Coaches Association. “Many times the media would already know what it was, but that’s all I could reference.”

Some coaches are more specific. Others are reluctant to share anything at all.

Washington State’s Mike Leach has a history of not even answering questions after a game about a player who was injured on the field. Chip Kelly also never talked about injuries while at Oregon — he’s now at UCLA — and eventually neither did his successor, Mark Helfrich, who’s now in the NFL. Miami’s Mark Richt used to be pretty open about injury updates but started to cut back because other coaches were withholding information.

Others are more forthcoming, like Joe Moorhead at Mississippi State and Duke’s David Cutcliffe.

That inconsistency could potentially raise red flags as legal gambling grows throughout the United States. If one coach reveals more than another, it opens up questions of whether it creates a chance for some gamblers to gain an unfair edge.

“When there’s less info out there, you have a greater chance of having inside information,” said Brad Powers, senior college football analyst for Pregame.com. “When there’s more information, when everyone knows everything — like the NFL, you know exactly if a guy is probable, doubtful or questionable — then nobody really has any inside information.”

Powers said bettors want a common language across the conferences. Coaches also want consistency, Berry said.

That could mean only releasing a player’s status for the game — an availability report, which may be the safest option. Or injuries could be defined as lower or upper body only.

“The more specific you get, the greater the chance is that you will wander into an area that is protected by one or both of those statutes (HIPAA and FERPA),” said attorney William H. Brooks, who works in the NCAA compliance and investigations group for his firm, Lightfoot, Franklin & White LLC.

To be honest, I don’t get all the fretting about this.  As that quoted passage suggests, an availability report would seem to meet the concerns of both ends.  Or am I missing something here?



Filed under Bet On It, College Football, The Body Is A Temple

14 responses to ““Although, that wouldn’t make it much fun for the gamblers or for the media.”

  1. You’re right, but the conferences want to be paid for the information. They are going to throw up roadblocks until the wise guys pay up. I love that the extortion angle is on the other foot now.


  2. Hogbody Spradlin

    Only one example, but Kerryon Johnson was available for the SECCG, but the nature of his unjury certainly affected a lot [of bets].


  3. Macallanlover

    Agree, much ado about very little. There may be an increase in the number of casual bettors, but betting on football was always available to those who wished to indulge. Will be a lot more 1. 5, and 10 dollar plays but the big money players will likely continue to bet “the old fashioned way”. The SC decision doesn’t require any new information be available from colleges. The NFL injury report has existed for decades and colleges never fell in line with it. Who exactly will pay for this suspect information anyway? The whole drama of these discussions, and fears of bribery, seems overblown. Ma and Pa Kent in Midville Nebraska isn’t going to pay Jimmy or Joe to take a dive or shave points in a CFB game to win $25 to buy some Happy Meals the next week.


  4. Cousin Eddie

    Not that it matters to anyone but what good does it do the student athlete to have his or her injuries reported, ain’t it about the kids, NAH, I’m kidding everyone knows it’s about everyone else getting a slice of the pie.


  5. Lorenzo

    I agree. I think that his statement, “If one coach reveals more than another, it opens up questions of whether it creates a chance for some gamblers to gain an unfair edge.” was off from what seems to be the intent of his piece. If a coach is actually revealing the information, then everyone has access to it, so no real advantage. However, if some are not revealing, then that is what leaves the possibility of inside info and an unfair advantage. Disclosure requirements in CFB , like in the NFL, would at least in theory help mitigate that advantage.


  6. I think it is completely much ado about nothing. Neither probable, doubtful or questionable tells you whether a player is going to play or how effective that player can be if he does. It means nothing.


  7. mwo

    Not exactly gambling, and I’m sorry if I missed it but, are we doing the Fabris pool this year?


  8. UGA '97

    Vegas always knows, regardless of what team info becomes public knowledge.


  9. W Cobb Dawg

    So people who follow gambling feel cfb needs to adjust policies to accommodate gamblers? Maybe cfb ought to stick to cfb. The ‘availability’ option would hopefully nip more talk of this in the bud.


  10. do like the pros, Div 1 is already the pros anyway


  11. Quacker ass quacker

    From my perspective, injuries are medical conditions it’s a HIPAA violation to release details of a patient’s medical information without consent. That won’t stop the media from reporting it with Boom as an anonymous source.