US Integrity and Real Response launch new digital tool for college athletes to report suspicious gambling activity
Sports wagering monitoring services provider US Interactive, in partnership with Real Response, has launched a new digital platform where college athletes can alert or tip their administrations anonymously about suspected gambling activity.
The tool is an expansion to a tipline that was launched in May called ‘Athlete Alert Powered by RealResponse,' which enables college athletes to report improper or illegal conduct by coaches and teammates. The new tool will also give college athletic administrators a direct line to investigators.
The tool, which monitors sports wagering trends in real time to detect irregularities, will come at no additional cost and will be available for 150 athletic departments that are clients. The companies note that as an additional paid service, colleges and universities can establish an institution-branded external portal to allow anyone, from parents to friends to competitors, to report gambling-related issues.
Designed specifically for colleges, the new tool will enable a college athlete to go to his or her existing RealResponse webpage and report suspected misuse of insider information, potential game manipulation and physical threats related to gambling, among other issues. After a report comes in, administrators can request US Integrity investigators to assess, verify and route the report to appropriate authorities.
The new service comes at a key time. News agency AP points out a state investigation into illegal sports wagering at Iowa and Iowa State led to criminal charges being filed against nearly a dozen athletes. Alabama baseball coach Brian Bohannon was fired in May after being linked to suspicious gambling activity on a Crimson Tide game.
Iowa State is a RealResponse client, spokesman Nick Joos told the cited source. Iowa is not a client but has a relationship with US Integrity through the Big Ten Conference, spokesman Matthew Weitzel added.
“With the significant rise of easy-to-use online and mobile sports betting, the challenges to fair competition are immense and growing,” said David Chadwick, founder and CEO of RealResponse. “Gambling is a major concern on college campuses—not just for student-athletes—and the potential harm to a student's mental health and physical well-being is great.”
“Nothing is more important than protecting the health and wellbeing of the student-athletes who have committed their lives to competing at the highest levels, while simultaneously pursuing a higher education,” added U.S. Integrity Co-Founder and CEO Matthew Holt. “This new solution brings the capabilities and experience of U.S. Integrity and RealResponse together, to do just that.”
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