Fantasy Sports Suspend College Sports Contests
Daily fantasy sports companies DraftKings and FanDuel have voluntarily agreed to suspend DFS contests involving college sports. This agreement arises after months of discussions between the fantasy sports companies, the NCAA, its member schools, and various state legislatures.
As the March Madness Tournament winds down, the agreement to suspend fantasy college contests will go into effect after tonight’s championship game.
DraftKings and FanDuel have been battling over the legality of their fantasy sports contests for quite some time. For example, DraftKings and FanDuel recently agreed to suspend contests in New York after Attorney General Eric Schneiderman took legal action against the companies alleging the contests constituted illegal gambling.
Despite the companies’ many battles, the involvement of college sports in DFS has been a troubling matter. On March 25, 2016, after months of investigating the fantasy sports industry, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey published final regulations, which are intended to better protect consumers in the world of fantasy sports. The final regulations ban not only college sports, but also software programs that allow users to automate action on fantasy sports sites.
In addition, Indiana took a similar approach in its recent legislation that legalized fantasy sports but prohibited contests based on college or high school sports.
The NCAA is pleased with this agreement because its main concern has always been the protection of its student athletes. Mark Emmert, the NCAA President, in stating his appreciation for DraftKings and FanDuel’s decision to suspend college sport contests said “this action culminates months of hard work between all parties to reach a place that is good for amateur sports and most importantly, the young people who participate.”
FanDuel and DraftKings have agreed that suspending college sports contests is the “best path forward” to resolving issues within the state legislatures.