HomeSportsOhio Considering Ban of Sports Gamblers For Social Media Actions After Angry Bettors Bullied College Players

Ohio Considering Ban of Sports Gamblers For Social Media Actions After Angry Bettors Bullied College Players

by Andrew Graham
Ohio State mascot Brutus Buckeye
COLUMBUS, OH - NOVEMBER 05: Ohio State Buckeyes mascot Brutus claps during the Big 10 college football game between the Ohio State Buckeyes and Nebraska Cornhuskers on November 05, 2016, at Ohio Stadium in Columbus, OH. Ohio State won the game 62-3. (Photo by Matthew Visinsky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images).

Getting to legally bet on sports is a privilege, not a right — something the Ohio Casino Control Commission (OCCC) might be seeking to remind certain bettors who choose to abuse athletes online. This comes after Dayton men’s basketball coach Anthony Grant took aim at gamblers hurling online abuse at his players.

Grant’s words got the attention of Matt Schuler, executive director of the OCCC. This led to Schuler reminding fellow commissioners that there is an exempt list bettors can be placed on in Ohio. He explained to that it’s “incumbent” on the OCCC to consider using these powers.

“If social media is able to help us determine who these individuals are that are speaking out hate to kids, then the commission has a responsibility to ensure that…Certainly those people cannot engage in legal sports gaming in the state of Ohio,” Schuler said. “We obviously don’t have control over people’s behavior, but we do have control over what venues they can choose to participate.”

Whether enforcement will apply only to college athletes or go broader for professional athletes remains to be seen. It’s not a certainty that the OCCC will use the power.

The goal is to curtail online abuse. If just the reminder of the stick they wield is enough to stymy the vitriol, then Schuler will be content.

He seems determined to get on top of the issue that Grant brought to light earlier in the week.

“It’s something that I wasn’t planning on talking about today,” Schuler said. “But I saw it and I thought that it was important enough to bring up to make sure that anyone who’s listening understands that this type of behavior is not okay for anybody, in any venue, at all.”