From our waistlines to our politics, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and I have very little in common, although a mutual love for The Boss is a nice thing to fall back on. I bet he likes farting, too.
But one thing Christie and I definitely see eye-to-eye on, besides bacon’s deliciousness, is the NCAA’s ridiculousness.
New Jersey has plans to legalize sports betting effective Jan. 9. In response, the NCAA is backing out of five sponsored events that are scheduled in the state for 2013 and vowing to move them elsewhere.
Division I men’s and women’s swimming and diving regionals, Division I women’s basketball first- and second-round games, the Division III men’s volleyball championship, and the Division II and III women’s lacrosse championships.
Yeah. Seriously. The NCAA is going to get on its high-horse about sports gambling as if someone is going to wager on a Denison vs. Buffalo State lacrosse match. Not even the worst degenerate I know — a title for which there are many candidates — would even consider such a thing. And I doubt any college diver is going to, um, take a dive for some shady gambling type.
But the NCAA is sticking to its guns, which states its “championships sports wagering policy strictly prohibits the conducting of any championship session in a state with legal wagering that is based on single-game betting.”
A Christie spokesman derided the NCAA’s stance as “ludicrous and hypocritical,” which is also our take on the issue. New Jersey’s law is written to prohibit wagering on any college event that takes place in the state, as well as any game a New Jersey school participates in regardless of location. If you want to put up that big money on Princeton football, you’ll have to do it elsewhere.
All the NCAA is accomplishing here is denying a bunch of hotels and Applebee’s in places like Montclair and Piscataway some business when the towns are supposed to host these events. It’s just another classic case of the NCAA placing some well-meaning principle as a roadblock to common sense.
PS – If you threw a hat on Christie and some longer hair, he’d totally look like Sam Kinison.