Big 12, Sports Betting Integrity Firm Partner Ahead Of College Football Season

Written By Nathan Frederick on August 31, 2023
The Big 12 Conference partnered with US Integrity to provide sports betting monitoring just ahead of the new college football season.

One scandal is enough. Following a betting probe involving Iowa State, West Virginia’s athletic conference – the Big 12 – announced last week that it had reached an agreement with US Integrity, which will provide the league with sports betting monitoring software to prevent future problems.

ProhiBet, US Integrity’s sports surveillance technology, provides annual training and promotes awareness of sports betting regulations for all student-athletes, coaches, staff and officials.

US Integrity’s ProhiBet to overlook Big 12 Conference

In addition to yearly trainings, ProhiBet conducts weekly integrity monitoring across all sports and grants users access to the Prohibet system for additional oversight.

The timing of the Big 12-US Integrity partnership makes perfect sense. The college football season kicked off last week with a small slate of “Week 0” games. This weekend, most collegiate teams will be in action, including a massive showdown between WVU and Penn State in Happy Valley on Saturday. 

College football betting is widely popular in the US and that will likely continue to grow as sports betting access expands across the country.

“Given the current landscape of sports betting in our industry, it’s more important than ever to double-down on ensuring sport integrity across our conference,” Big 12 commissioner, Brett Yormark, said in the press release.

Iowa-Iowa State scandal proves need for additional oversight

The Big 12’s partnership arrives in the wake of a recent scandal involving football players from Iowa and Iowa State.

A number of players from both schools have been accused of wagering on collegiate athletics, including games they were playing in. The players have been charged with tampering with records as a result of their alleged attempts to conceal their electronic wagering activities.

One of the most notable charges revolves around current Iowa State running back Jirehl Brock. According to the Des Moines Register, court records reveal that Brock is accused of placing 1,327 wagers for more than $12,050.

He allegedly placed wagers on four Iowa State football games while a member of the team, and bet on numerous Iowa State basketball games, as well.

Numerous athletes have been suspended following betting allegations

And with collegiate athletes at the center of these games, it is essential that student athletes are aware of all the regulations surrounding sports betting – especially considering that violations can jeopardize their athletic eligibility.

Iowa defensive tackle Noah Shannon was suspended for the season, and 11 players have had their eligibility affected by their actions. A number of Iowa State players have also been suspended from team activities.

The incident should prompt continued efforts aimed at enforcement and awareness in regards to collegiate sports betting regulations. It is likely other conferences will look to employ similar partnerships like the Big 12 did with US Integrity.

It is also possible that outreach initiatives could be broadened to include the parents and friends of collegiate athletes. Some of the players involved in the Iowa State-Iowa scandal used their parent’s names or information in order to create their betting accounts. Perhaps those efforts will eventually be introduced before student athletes begin their collegiate careers or even during the recruiting process.

College football’s popularity requires need for regulation

College football is one of America’s most honored traditions. On Saturday, hundreds of blue-and-gold-wearing West Virginia fans will make the trip to Pennsylvania for the season opener. Penn State fans will show up in droves, too. The total attendance in Beaver Stadium should exceed 100,000.

Thousands more will watch from home. Some will also place wagers. With all that excitement on the line, it’s imperative that the competition remains true.

Regulated gambling absolutely requires honest participation from all stakeholders, including sportsbooks, teams and players. And you can expect continued efforts from sports betting operators and athletic conferences to ensure that.

Photo by Christopher Jackson / AP
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Nathan Frederick

Nathan Frederick is an award-winning writer with more than 1,000 published bylines and two decades of journalism experience. His work has won awards from the Pennsylvania Society of Professional Journalists, the Keystone Press Association, and the Associated Press Sports Editors. He has also authored three books, one of which debuted as an Amazon No. 1 New Release.

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