Las Vegas Sun

November 13, 2018

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Why former UNLV AD Mike Hamrick used to watch for student-athletes at sportsbooks

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AP Photo/The Herald-Dispatch, Lori Wolfe

Marshall University named former UNLV athletic director Mike Hamrick as its athletic director during a press conference Monday, July 20, 2009, in Huntington, W.Va. He replaces Bob Marcum, who retired after seven years.

At the heart of the financial tug of war begun between college athletics and the gaming industry is a disagreement. Administrators say legalized sports gambling will increase the likelihood of scandals on campus. Gaming entities, armed with watchdogs, believe the opposite is true.

Marshall Athletic Director Mike Hamrick said that during his six years as UNLV’s athletic director, he regularly waited at the Thomas & Mack Center after basketball games to watch who was hanging around and who players left with. If he went to a hotel or casino for dinner, he’d excuse himself and visit the sportsbook to see whether any UNLV athletes were there.

“That sounds a little paranoid on my part,” Hamrick said. “But could you imagine where my career would go if we had a major point-shaving scandal under my watch? Think about it.”

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