NCAA rescinds ban on title events in betting states

The NCAA announced Thursday that it has rescinded a policy that prohibited championship competitions from being held in states that allow single-game sports betting.

The NCAA board of governors temporarily suspended the policy last year, after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a federal statute that had restricted state-sponsored sports betting primarily to Nevada for 26 years. The board voted to fully rescind the policy this week.

Nevada has been a home to college basketball conference tournaments and a college football bowl game for years, but was prohibited from hosting NCAA-sanctioned championship events like the men's and women's basketball tournaments.

The NCAA remains opposed to betting on amateur athletics, legally or illegally, and in a news release reinforced its desire for a prohibition on wagering on college sports to be included in any federal legislation. A federal bill that was introduced last year in Congress did not include any such prohibition and did not advance. No new federal sports-betting legislation has been introduced this year.

"Any proposed legislation should protect student-athlete well-being and the integrity of the games," the NCAA stated in the release.

Since the Supreme Court ruling last May, legal, full-scale sportsbooks have opened in seven states in addition to Nevada: Delaware, Mississippi, New Jersey, New Mexico, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

Indiana is among the next wave of states poised to authorize sports betting. The NCAA is headquartered in Indianapolis. A bill that would authorize sports betting in Indiana passed through the state legislature this week and was sent to Gov. Eric Holcomb, who has until late next week to take action. Arkansas and New York already have sports-betting laws in place, and Iowa, Montana and Tennessee also have bills to their respective governors.