Fan Duel and DraftKings are clearly gambling as determined by the NCAA, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, and 14 other AG’s in states across the country. Parents, families and legislators must take a stand and protect Illinois children.
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Rhonda Brown, Mother of College Bound Athlete, Chicago IL:
“I’m a mom of a teen-aged boy who is an outstanding athlete and like most boys in America, sports-obsessed. While I’ve always considered his playing and watching sports a good thing, the rising phenomenon of Daily Fantasy Sports has created a danger to my son that I couldn’t have imagined – one that threatens not only his hard-earned dollars, but his future.
Recently my son and I reviewed and signed the required National College Athletic Association (NCAA) registration which requires that all college bound student athletes, must register and adhere to the NCAA rules throughout the remainder of their high school careers, including refraining from either legal or illegal sports wagering. Any violation of this policy can mean an automatic one-year suspension of eligibility.
As the NCAA has determined that paid daily fantasy leagues are sports gambling any student playing daily fantasy sports – even for a day, is in violation of the organization’s bylaws and subject to suspension. At the same time, I learned that DraftKings, Fan Duel and other companies were trying in Illinois and elsewhere to pass legislation that would make Daily Fantasy Sports legal and declare them games of skill – which of course is sheer nonsense.
As a mom, I was fascinated and horrified this past year as I watched DraftKings and FanDuel commercials that were clearly being targeted to young, sports-crazy boys. Given the way these companies are targeting young people with their advertising, I have no confidence in their desire or ability to prevent minors from gambling in daily fantasy sports competitions that put their money and futures at risk. Of course the problem of NCAA eligibility pales in comparison to the potential that we are ‘endorsing’ companies that target our youth. The peer pressure to play paid fantasy sports, regardless of the legal or financial consequences, is immense.
I can’t understand why lawmakers are considering passage of a bill that would allow Internet gambling operators – like DraftKings and FanDuel – with their massive advertising budgets to operate in a manner that is virtually unregulated, has no legitimate way of protecting youth or preventing their participation online and frankly returns nothing of benefit to the community. Protecting youth is more important that ensuring profits for DraftKings and FanDuel – particularly in Illinois where youth unemployment and vulnerability is at an all-time high. If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and looks like a duck – it likely is a duck.
Daily Fantasy Sports are gambling and should be either outlawed or regulated as such.”