Earlier this week, Dayton Flyers basketball head coach Anthony Grant blasted angry gamblers who have targeted his players with online attacks during the team’s disappointing 3-12 start. And soon, there might be some real consequences for those sorts of antics.
Matt Schuler, the commissioner of the Ohio Casino Control Commission (OCCC), saw Grant’s comments earlier this week and thinks it could be possible for the state to do something about it, potentially putting people who harass college athletes on social media on an exclusion list, banning them from gambling in the state of Ohio.
“And I think that it’s incumbent upon the commission to look into that very power,” Schuler said according to Covers.com. “That 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. We obviously don’t have control over people’s behavior, but we do have control over what venues they can choose to participate.”
While it’s unclear whether or not the OCCC will actually pursue this option, or if this would protect all athletes or just college athletes. But Schuler said he felt this issue was important to address.
“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.”
Something like this might be difficult to enforce with the prevalence of anonymous social media accounts. But it might make at least some problem gamblers think twice before sending hateful messages, which is the goal.