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The Alabama Baseball Betting Scandal Is So Much Dumber And More Insane Than Anyone Could Have Possibly Imagined

Remember earlier this year when Alabama fired baseball coach Brad Bohannon because he apparently had something to do with a gambling scandal involving his own team? Well some of the details of that story have emerged and I guarantee you could not have dreamt up anything less intelligent.

Sports Illustrated — On April 28, Bert Eugene Neff Jr. walked into the BetMGM Sportsbook at Great American Ballpark in Cincinnati in possession of a large amount of cash, looking to make a huge score. His proposed wager quickly aroused concern and suspicion among the staff.

Three people familiar with the investigation told Sports Illustrated that Neff wanted to bet more than $100,000 on a college baseball game that night: Alabama at No. 1 LSU. The game had gotten virtually no gambling traffic, and Neff’s desired bets on the Tigers far exceeded the sportsbook’s established house limit on college baseball. It was a foolhardy act that created a surreal scene, and the ripple effects from that incident continue to be felt more than a month later.

Fueled by hubris and, perhaps, desperation, Neff – an obscure youth-league coach from Mooresville, Ind., with a penchant for networking in recruiting circles—stood at the window and pleaded his case for making the huge wager to the book’s staff, the sources say. He indicated that he had inside information on the game—and he did, in the palm of his hand. 

Neff was texting with Alabama baseball coach Brad Bohannon via the encrypted messaging app Signal while at the betting window, attempting to place the wager, the sources say. His texting was indiscreet, to the point that the book’s video surveillance cameras were able to zoom in on the details of Neff and Bohannon’s text exchange, making Bohannon’s name visible later in screenshots. 

“[Video cameras] can see the [text] conversation back-and-forth,” a source familiar with the incident says. “It couldn’t have been any more reckless.”

The inside information that Neff had received: Alabama was scratching its ace starting pitcher for the game, Luke Holman, due to back tightness. He was being replaced by Hagan Banks, who hadn’t started a game since mid-March.

Giphy Images.

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He told the people working at a sportsbook he had inside information?! And had his texts with the guy giving him inside information pulled up on his phone while standing at the window?! This guy needs to be locked up for sheer incompetence alone.

I guess I can believe that some moron in Ohio is stupid enough to go to a sportsbook and tell the employees he needs to put $100,000 on LSU because he has inside information, but Bohannon being this stupid is really something. If I was a college baseball coach making $500,000 a year in a pretty sweet job, my wife wouldn't even know who was pitching on any given night.

If he never got another raise or a better job, Bohannon just lost probably $10 million because he was texting his buddy — on an encrypted messaging app — to bet against his own team. Seems like a bad choice, but maybe that was worth a few million to him. Who am I to judge, you know?

I can't believe they got caught with such a great scheme.