On Friday of last week, the NCAA, along with “The Big Four” American professional sports leagues (NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL (side note: I recently heard a professor refer to them as the Big 3.5), filed a federal suit against the state of Delaware. The leagues + NCAA are concerned over Delaware’s new declaration to allow people to make individual wagers on the outcomes of professional and collegiate games.
For a long time now, Delaware has allowed parley bets (a single bet based on two or more individual bets, that only pays out if all individual bets are in favor of the bettor), which was initially permitted by Delaware as a form of lottery. The Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) prohibits sports bets, but allowed Delaware to continue permitting parley bets, as they existed before the federal legislation was enacted. Does a single bet not fall into the category of a “lottery”? It is harder to win a parley than a single bet, but either both are games of chance or neither are games of chance…I don’t see how one is and one is not. Personally, I believe that it’s all based on luck, and that very little skill is involved in making any type of sports wager (unless you have inside information).
The best analysis I have read concerning the pending litigation was written by Jeffrey Standen: NFL v. Delaware: Round II.