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ACC Commissioner Backs National Ban On College Prop Bets

Bill Speros for Bookies.com

Bill Speros  | 3 mins

ACC Commissioner Backs National Ban On College Prop Bets

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CHARLOTTE - ACC Commissioner Jim Phillips on Thursday offered his full support for a nationwide ban on college player prop wagers backed by NCAA President Charlie Baker and others. 

“That is a runaway train. That’s a major concern,” Phillips said when asked by bookies.com during an on-the-press Q&A at the annual conference of the Associated Press Sports Editors. “I am very concerned about player prop betting from a health and safety standpoint.” 

Phillips echoed concerns voiced in the past by Baker and others about athletes receiving criticism or worse from bettors when they fail to hit a certain number of hits, saves, or points in a prop wager. 

RELATED: College Football Miles Traveled: ACC

The ACC expands to 17 schools for the upcoming football season, adding Cal, Stanford, and SMU to its roster. Overall, there are ACC schools in seven different states that allow online sports betting. 

Those schools are Syracuse (New York); Pitt (Pennsylvania), Florida State and Miami (Florida); North Carolina, North Carolina State, Wake Forest and Duke (North Carolina); Louisville (Kentucky); and Virginia and Virginia Tech (Virginia). 

Notre Dame, which is an ACC school in every sport besides football, is also located in a state (Indiana) with legal online sports betting.

'Very Concerned About The Safety Of Student Athletes'

The ACC has been located in Greensboro, North Carolina since its founding in 1953. The conference moved its home to Charlotte in 2023. The Tar Heel State launched legal sports betting this past March. 

“Very concerned about the safety of student-athletes. Certainly concerned about game-fixing. We’ve taken really good steps in having a partner (AC360 – formerly U.S. Integrity) that’s helped us,” Phillips said. 

He said the conference has been “flagged when there’s some unique kind of betting going on. Or lines that may have changed” but offered no specifics in terms of which events the ACC was flagged about or when. 

Overall, Phillips said the conference remains wary about the challenges legalized gambling poses in terms of potentially affecting all involved in student athletics. 

“When you’re dealing with thousands and thousands and thousands of student-athletes and trying to get a hold of it. And make sure that they’re educated first and foremost about what individuals may be doing. (And who is) getting close to them But then you have a staff piece of it. Coaches. You have trainers. And all the rest, which can really make it difficult,” he said. 

Having more than two-thirds of the ACC members' schools located in states with legalized betting means those in a position of oversight can be a bit overwhelming. 

“The whole area of gambling. Yes, it’s not as taboo as it used to be. Different states have enacted laws to allow gambling,” he said. “But of us who are the “Caretakers” are gasping a little bit for the right path and how to make sure we do everything we can to keep a couple of those things in a very healthy place. I worry about student-athletes and worry about protecting results.”

About the Author

Bill Speros for Bookies.com
Bill Speros
Bill Speros is an award-winning journalist and editor whose career includes stops at USA Today Sports Network / Golfweek, Cox Media, ESPN, Orlando Sentinel and Denver Post.