Many kids in the United States grow up playing some form of organized sports. Whether an individual or team sport, sports are purest at this young age. There is an emphasis in the United States to be successful in sports. Success is defined as a degree of measure (Webster's Dictionary). Most athletes measure success in millions of dollars. Only 5.8% of all high school football athletes go on to the collegiate level and only 2.0% of those athletes make it to the professional level (NCAA).
The fact is, not everyone can make the seven figure salary and some athletes will compromise the purity of the sport to make their millions. .
Many of these athletes will try and make their money by gambling. Results from a 1998 study, involving approximately 1,000 students at universities in the Southeastern Conference, revealed that athletes were nearly twice as likely to be problem gamblers as non-athletes (Saum, 1998). Student athletes are more prone to gambling behavior on campus than non-student athletes for a variety of reasons, most involving their proximity and access to sports related affairs and their greater competitive nature. However, student athletes are not the only undergraduates with gambling problems. "A study by the University of Cincinnati of 648 Division I intercollegiate men's basketball and football respondents indicated that 25.5% had gambled money on other college sporting events, 3.7% had gambled money on a game in which they had played (NCAA, 2002)."" "According to a 1999 study from the University of Michigan, nearly half of male football and basketball players at Division I-A schools have bet on sports during college "a violation of the National Collegiate Athletic Association, (NCAA), rules that can lead to suspension and loss of eligibility (Gaming Magazine, 2001)."".
It is hard to discuss "big time- money and gambling without mentioning organized crime. "Organized crime is a continuing criminal enterprise that rationally works to profit from illicit activities that are in great public demand (Albanese, 1996).