Point shaving entices athletes to earn extra cash during college

Recent allegations of a point-shaving scandal at Auburn University came at a time when most college basketball fans were printing out brackets and picking their winners.

“Auburn officials were made aware of a rumor regarding an allegation two weeks ago and immediately reported it to the FBI, the NCAA and the SEC,” said Auburn University Assistant Athletic Director for Public Relations Cassie Arner.

The allegation is that Auburn guard Varez Ward intentionally shaved points to cover point spreads in two specific games this season.

These types of NCAA infringements have occurred before at different universities and have often left those programs in ruin for years to come.

Athletic Director Mark Linder said all of the athletes at UNA are educated on the basic rules set by the NCAA and at the beginning of the year, a Life Skills program is put on for the student-athletes.

“We bring in speakers and motivators and have them talk to the students about character,” Linder said. “We may not address point shaving specifically every day, but everyone involved with the athletic department talks about character daily.”

Head basketball coach Bobby Champagne said he talks with his players about all of the basic NCAA rules.

“I have to remind them that they aren’t normal college students, that they can’t fill out a bracket for five bucks, or that they can’t let somebody pick up their tab at a restaurant,” Champagne said.

UNA guard Beaumont Beasley said compliance meetings address the basic rules governing student athletes.

“I have a good relationship with my coach, and I feel like my whole team does,” he said. “He has an open door, and I feel like if there was anything I had problems with or questions about, he would be there for me.”

UNA guard Keynan Jackson echoed Beasley’s point.

“Every day I step into coach’s office,” he said. “They want to know how we’re doing. I think we have a good athletic department here; they keep us informed, and you can tell they want what’s best for us.”

Jackson said he doesn’t see why athletes would shave points.

“I don’t know what would bring a player to do something like shaving points,” he said. “I know with all the work and sweat we put into our team, I couldn’t imagine somebody messing it up for everybody.”