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The NCAA logo is seen on the game ball as we look at a potential nationwide ban on college player prop betting.
The NCAA logo is seen on the game ball during the first round of the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament game on March 22, 2024. Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images via AFP.

Efforts to ban individual prop bets on college athletes nationwide are hitting a fever pitch, and the timing could not be more crucial. Prop bets are among the many options available at our best sports betting sites.

This week, in the middle of the biggest betting event on the annual sports betting calendar - the NCAA Men's and Women's basketball tournaments - NCAA president Charlie Barker released a statement on the viability of prop betting markets surrounding college-age athletes. 

At the heart

Harassment and risk to college-age athletes have been at the heart of the issue for NCAA brass for months and even years. Baker and others feel that individual players could be harassed or threatened if they do not hit their prop lines. Game integrity could also be on the line if a player is seen to intentionally miss a shot to fall short of oddsmakers' expectations.

The NBA is dealing with that issue now, with the Toronto Raptors' Jontay Porter being investigated “following multiple instances of betting irregularities over the past several months.” Allegations against him are that he may have intentionally missed prop betting targets and benefitted from bets on himself.

Some heavy-hitting jurisdictions in the U.S. legal sports betting market are already taking steps to combat such concerns. 

Maryland sports betting apps, Ohio sports betting apps, and Vermont sports betting apps have all banned college player prop wagers this year, and lawmakers in states like West Virginia and New Mexico have advanced anti-harassment legislation with respect to their legal sports betting scenes.

Ohio has even passed legislation to protect all athletes against harassment. Bettors can be banned in the Buckeye State if they are seen to have harassed players, coaches, or officials of a sporting event.

A dying market?

The aforementioned states have been somewhat quick to act on Charlie Baker's concerns about prop bets on individual college athletes. Most states outside of Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan, and Wyoming currently have some restrictions on prop betting markets for college-age athletes.

The degree of such restrictions varies from outright bans, like those in Ohio and Maryland, to prop betting restrictions in New Jersey and other similar-minded states on contests involving in-state college teams.

Could the 2024 March Madness tournament be the last time we see prop betting opportunities for college-age bettors nationally? The push is certainly on at the highest levels, with NCAA president Charlie Baker, individual states, and, in some cases, individual sportsbooks operating in the bustling American legal sports wagering market.