Iowa State Quarterback Among Four Cyclones Charged with Illegal Sports Gambling
Four Iowa State University athletes are in hot water following an investigation by the Iowa Criminal Division. In addition, one of the individuals named in the ongoing investigation is the Cyclones quarterback.
Iowa State Cyclone quarterback Hunter Dekkers is one of the accused. Dekkers allegedly bet on several Cyclone sports, including a 2021 football game. An affidavit filed Monday in the Iowa District Court for Story County alleges approximately 366 bets with over $2,799 wagered were placed on a DraftKings sportsbook account linked to Dekkers, per KCCI. 26 of those bets were on Iowa State sporting events.
Other Iowa State athletes included in the findings are Paniro Johnson, a sophomore wrestler, Dodge Sauser, a sophomore football player, and former Cyclones football player Eyioma Uwazurike. Uwazurike was drafted by the Denver Broncos in the fourth round of the 2023 NFL Draft, and is currently suspended indefinitely by the NFL as a result. The four have been charged with tampering with records and an aggravated misdemeanor, as first reported by the Des Moines Register.
Back to Dekkers. The aforementioned affidavit alleges that the quarterback bet on an Iowa State football game against Oklahoma State in October 2021. The Cyclones won 24-21 and Dekkers didn't play a down in the game. What exactly the wager was on was unclear.
Even more concerning is that Dekkers was apparently under 21, the legal betting age in the state of Iowa, when most of the best were placed. The affidavit alleges that the bets were placed with a false identity with the help of Dekkers' parents.
Sauser made approximately 113 bets worth $3,075 with 12 wagers on Iowa State football games. Johnson, who won a Big 12 wrestling title last year, allegedly placed about 1,283 bets worth more than $45,600; approximately 25 of those were on Iowa State events. Finally, Uwazurike is accused of making 801 bets for more than $21,300 with four of those wagers on Iowa State football games.
Iowa State Senior Associate Athletic Director Nick Joos said the fact-finding and information gathering process is still ongoing, so declined to comment on the Iowa DCI's findings:
We are in the process of gathering information and will have no further comment at this time.
With the legalization of sports gambling happening in various states across the country, with 33 states being operational for wagering, every sports league is trying to combat players actively wagering on games with which they're involved. This summer has been busy for the NFL, with several players getting multi-game or even season-long suspensions for betting on games. Now, Iowa State is the latest school probed by an investigating office.
Dekkers plans to plead "not guilty" and will likely miss all or most of the 2023 college football season.
Per ESPN, in May, school officials at Iowa State and the University of Iowa recognized that 41 student-athletes between the two universities were suspected of violating gambling rules. Read the full story on ESPN.