Monday, February 8, 2016

Gambling on the Super Bowl

One aspect of American Football that wasn’t part of the Quadralogue that I wanted to explore further was gambling. I recently learned that a friend of mine is making a killing running a website for rich people who bet thousands on football games. Not being a huge gambler I wanted to see what the fuss was about so I started my own game. Growing up I had seen my dad play this game every Super Bowl and had even participated once or twice when he needed to fill squares. So I started with a square with 100 boxes in it. I sold each square for a dollar each. The people I asked were mostly my friends, roommates and coworkers. Some were hesitant because they didn’t follow football. Once I explained that I also am ignorant to football but that my game involved virtually zero knowledge of sports what so ever they coughed up a couple of bucks to play. Once the grid was full I would then assign the X axis for the Panthers and the Y axis for the Broncos. I then randomly picked from 10 cards (Ace-10) X axis then again for the Y. Before the game started I sent a picture of the game board to everyone participating so they would know their numbers. I broke it into four chances to win, 20$ for the first quarter, 30$ for the second, 20$ for the third and 30$ for the fourth quarter. The way it works is once the quarter ends the score reflects the numbers on the top and down the side. So if the score was 10 Panthers and 13 Broncs you would find, the zero at the X axis and 3 for the Y and the person at the intersection wins 20$. Every quarter this was done until the 100$ was distributed. I liked this game because it didn’t involve any real football knowledge or any strategy to win so it was accessible to anyone who had money and could get the scores to follow along.

Some of my friends at work play fantasy football and I wanted to see what that was about and if/how it was legal to play online. The first website I looked at ( began with a Disclaimer.

Disclaimer: We are not lawyers and can't give legal advice. This is not to be construed as legal advice. If you have concerns, consult an attorney and research the laws in your state before playing fantasy sports for money.

From what I understand, you pick your team and the results are determined by how the player does in real life. To me this seemed, creepy and way too involved. It is defiantly not a game that someone who doesn’t follow the sport could jump into on a whim. In the article “The Super Bowl’s violence is America’s violence, it mentioned that some players pay bounties to other players to hurt each other. Sick as this is, it will ultimately affect the people playing fantasy football so to me this seems really unfair. That article also spurred conversation with my football watching friends about how we are seeing more and more players being punished for their violent behavior off the field. One person I talked to went as far to say that it was unfair how the NFL treated Ray Rice after his infamous knock out last year. He said it was unfair because there was no crime, Rice’s girlfriend never pressed charges. I was stunned. That statement alone sold me on the Super bowl’s violence IS America’s violence. So although I enjoyed the game a little more because of the prospect of winning money (and I didn’t L) I wouldn’t want to participate in other types of gambling that glorifies the violence of the sport.




  1. This is a HUGE aspect of not just football but many pro sport. Fanduel and the like are cashing out in the hundreds of millions. Espn, FS1 CBS Sportsline often discuss the lines, over/under, and probability of winning that Las Vegas puts out there. To be honest I think the increased viewing of sporting events is directly correlated to gambling

  2. I also wrote my blog on gambling- the squares and brackets like you. I was not involved in one but my friend won 20,000 dollars on one. CRAZY! I personally think it is foolish. Yeah, you can't win unless you play but i don't see all the hype behind four hours of violence. I wouldn't even know where to begin if someone asked me to be a part of a gamble like this-its like speaking a different language!

  3. This website reminds me of the popular football gambling game, fantasy football. Personally I have many (mostly male) friends who engage and play fantasy football throughout the season. Not only is it costly to play, but it is extremely time consuming , watching every game, keeping up with stats, trading/ arranging players etc.. One of my friends spent more time per week playing fantasy football then he worked at his job... It becomes a fiendish obsession and the pride in having the "best" team is the driving force. My friends acted as if this game actually had a say about what kind of "man" they are... ridiculous. I understand the attraction to gambling but they almost didn't even care about the money, they cared more about their teams rank and how their ability to choose the "right" players made them more of a man.