It looks like a brand new source of revenue could soon become available for West Virginia and Marshall. That is, unless the NCAA steps in and slams the door on the whole idea.
According to David Purdum of ESPN, a tentative agreement between the West Virginia lottery commission, licensed casino operators and sports leagues with West Virginia Governor Jim Justice may have been reached. Officials from both West Virginia and Marshall were among those joining the meetings, and there is a possibility both universities could end up receiving a cut of the state’s sports gambling revenue.
“If this is legalized, what the ADs said is that we’ll have to spend more money on compliance and we’re going to have increased risk,” head of Division I Athletic Directors Association Tom McMillen said to ESPN. “What was shown, at schools with regulated [sports betting] markets — Nevada, UNLV — they spend considerably more on compliance, because it’s more open, more transparent, more in your face than the other schools where it’s illegal. The fact of the matter is that the onus is going to fall on Marshall and West Virginia.”
How much West Virginia and Marshall could potentially receive remains to be clarified, but any additional source of revenue is going to help in some way. No other NCAA schools currently have a similar revenue source like this outlined at this time.
Of course, this is all pending a decision by the United States Supreme Court regarding the legality of sports gambling. The state of West Virginia is being proactive in anticipation the Supreme Court will allow for state-sponsored sports gambling. That decision is expected by the end of June.