UH’s popularity surge is a sure bet

Let’s stop pretending.

You’re not buying a newspaper the Monday before the start of the NCAA basketball tournament because of the Sudoku puzzle. You’re not going to Uncle’s Super Bowl party because of the hot wings.

People gamble. They gamble all the time, even when they don’t think they’re gambling.

“Boy or girl” at the baby shower?

“Pick the big box, small box or ‘steal’ the Target gift certificate from your cousin” at the Christmas party’s grab bag?

Submitting your name for a lottery for a unit at a newly built condo building?

That’s gambling — if not of the wallet, at least of the heart.

The Supreme Court’s ruling that will open the possibility of legal sports betting in some states can only mean one thing … more interest in UH football.

UH’s home games have always been the chase picks for unfortunate bettors because the kickoffs at Aloha Stadium are at moe moe time on the East Coast.

The ruling and subsequent actions will result in more people caring about what happens in sporting events in the 50th state.

OF course, there are downsides to gambling. But people who want to bet already are betting. With legal betting, if you lose more than you can afford, you risk money but not your kneecaps.

Now, if only UH can find a way to capitalize on what will be a growing interest in sportscasts …


  1. wafan May 15, 2018 8:51 am

    I bet more angry posters show up.

  2. wafan May 15, 2018 8:52 am


  3. Stephen Tsai May 15, 2018 9:12 am

    Sometimes I’m liberal. Sometimes I’m conservative. Most times I try not to tell people what to do. If people aren’t hurting others — with words or deeds — it’s none of my business what they do.

  4. bowwar May 15, 2018 9:52 am

    Maintaining the integrity of the sport, game, and amateurism will be an extreme challenge with legalized sports betting…It’s bad enough that there were times that people questioned whether players “threw” a game.

  5. Stephen Tsai May 15, 2018 10:14 am

    I think anytime somebody loses, he thinks the game is rigged.
    People blame refs, hanging chads and the Publishing Clearinghouse.
    I knew a guy who thought Merrie Monarch was fixed.
    That’s the way it goes. Just paranoia and sour grapes.
    Of course, the NBA gives too many calls to LeBron …

  6. suckkabooya May 15, 2018 10:18 am

    Coleen Hanabusa was on Bobby Curran’s show yesterday morning. When she was asked why there is no form of legal gambling or wagering she stated that it “always” comes up every legislative session. Under Governor Ben Cayatano’s tenure was the “closest we had come to ratifying” to permit gambling in some form. That was due in part to the State’s subpar economy at the time. The proposed site (of the Casino) would have been away from Waikiki. She thought there would definitely be more “fervor” on the subject this legislative session.

    Another avenue that was discussed was the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. The way I took in what she said was that there would first need to be recognition for Hawaiians as having Tribal sovereignty by the Government. Then they would have to have negotiations with the Federal Government (Secretary?). Then it would still need to be ratified by the Hawaii Legislature. Sounded more difficult.

    Bobby felt that other forms of Gambling (specifically a lottery) would have to come before sports betting would ever enter. The feeling was that we definitely need some form of Gaming to create revenue for the State and I agree. It sounded like the State is inching closer toward ratification. At least for the casual gambler.

  7. Da Punchbowl Kid May 15, 2018 10:33 am

    It’s a safe bet to say that you are correct in your post Mr. Tsai. Gambling is part and parcel of local culture, legal or otherwise. My only wish is that the taxes from legalized gambling would be spent wisely to the benefit of all. Start with our schools.

    SteveM – you’re here and that’s what’s important!

  8. islandman May 15, 2018 10:46 am

    So does Ige get equal time on Bobby’s show or the rule doesn’t aoply ?
    Is the UH Run N Shoot under Rolovich more a hybrid offense rather than the one that we had in 2007 ?

  9. forsurftoo May 15, 2018 11:01 am

    The current government (for the last 50 years) will never allow gambling because once they do, OHA et al, will set up casinos etc and destroy their golden egg. It’s all about the money…….

  10. NotNasti May 15, 2018 11:27 am

    I just want the refs to call travelling in the NBA. That’s it.

  11. suckkabooya May 15, 2018 11:46 am

    #8 Island Man

    Bobby had her on his show strictly for the Sports Gaming Supreme Court ruling and her comments. Nothing involving campaigning or anything like that. I wish he would have had someone like Howard Dicus instead. He might have framed things in a more understandable way for the layman, especially the legal mumbo jumbo stuff that Hanabusa was rambling about.

  12. islandman May 15, 2018 11:56 am

    11. Ige or someone currently in the state gov’t would have been more relevant since this is now up to the states to decide if they want to allow sports betting. But Hanabusa is running for Governor.so ….

  13. tommui May 15, 2018 12:03 pm

    The powerball lottery could also be considered.

  14. Da Punchbowl Kid May 15, 2018 12:15 pm

    I concur regarding the Powerball Lottery, Judge Mui!

    Hope all is well with you, my friend!

  15. A-House May 15, 2018 12:57 pm

    eye trud the powa ball lottery

    every trip with the Warriors — eye buy tickets to whatever is available — win if eye lucky, but mosly to add 2 our trip album

    some day it will be my turn — hope soon because this bod getting old!

  16. A-House May 15, 2018 1:00 pm

    if Hawaii adopts a lottery — education and medical should be #1 and #2 to get 95% of any profits

    all money goes into a special fund that the Legislature cannot touch for any reason except for medical and education.

  17. A-House May 15, 2018 1:11 pm

    with the continued population growth on Oahu, there will come a day when “on-street” parking will be taboo/banned forever!

    I cannot see any easy way for the City & County or the State of Hawaii to create more roads within Honolulu proper to handle all the cars

    high rises will or will not create enough parking spaces to accommodate owners/tenants — on street parking will be banned — placing a “surcharge” for 2 or more vehicles will hurt the little guy, but no problem for the “rich”

    a better automated ground rail system to replace all buses for the entire island — double tracks [ one in each direction where possible ] along with super high fees to park — $25 – $50 per hour — in all commercial high rises

    super computer systems can figure all this out.

  18. Inyoface May 15, 2018 1:26 pm

    Would’ve won a bunch during the Chow era, they almost always beat the spread. Not sure if college sports will be able to bet on but having such a huge spread sometimes makes it better to pick the underdog.

  19. Boolakanaka May 15, 2018 3:00 pm

    # 9 you are entirely wrong. If you knew anything about global gaming markets, the largest being South Africa and Macau, followed by a distant third with Vegas, Hawaii as an international gaming destination would have the potential to be number one destination in the world (this is based on former analysis by investment banks—think about it, once a high roller gets here, it’s an island, where are they going to go?) As far, as OHA enriching themselves, Native Hawaiians could not conduct gaming unless they were federally recognized, similar to a tribe—and if that was the case, OHA would not be in existence, it would be an operating, domestically sovereign Hawaiian government entity, not OHA.

  20. H-Man May 15, 2018 3:08 pm

    Don’t tell me. You mean the Merry Monarch is not rigged? HeHeHe!

  21. Dennis Halloran May 15, 2018 4:36 pm

    We all love the rush of gambling, even if it is a roll of quarters annually.
    Let us assume it comes in some form to the Islands.
    Some of the cash flow will come to the State via % of profits.
    Learn from Alaska’s oil checks. Just send a check to residents.
    What ever do not spend a penny on Schools, Medical, Housing via a government entity
    let the people who got the checks determine how it is spent
    That is my soapbox

  22. suckkabooya May 15, 2018 5:16 pm

    I believe Hawaii would be the Premier International destination as well, Just the logistics need to be figured out to make it possible. Maybe build a stand alone Co-op “Center” (around Waikiki somewhere) so every Hotel (and investor) can represent themselves in some capacity. The West Side “Disney” branded Hotels can be the “family friendly” version for vacationers and have a larger impact than they do now to share the surplus of visitors. The rail would then have a major influence on the economic flow, and of course to also shuttle visitors to the new Aloha Stadium so they can watch all the Concerts that will come here to perform . Got lots of time to figure everything out (or don’t allow gambling and stand pat, up to them) the dumb rail may take a while longer to finish.

  23. Stephen Tsai May 15, 2018 7:29 pm

    There was a column today that implied passive-aggressively that sports gambling here would lead to fixing and corruption. I disagree. There already is illegal gambling here. Things won’t change by legalizing it.

  24. A View From Afar May 15, 2018 7:57 pm

    #16, Sorry A-House. Reserving a fixed percentage of gambling “profits” will NOT significantly increase the funding for education (or any other anointed cause). There is gambling where I live with a requirement that a guaranteed portion go to education, but since most education funding is at the mercy of executive or legislative decisions, regular funding gets reduced since the assumption is that proceeds from the gambling funds will make up the difference. In the end, education still gets underfunded. If you want to have gambling, then understand that you want it for gambling’s sake and not because you think it will help education or any other particular area. It won’t; money just gets moved around.

  25. A-House May 16, 2018 7:07 am


    i understand your view, but it all depends on the people, politicians, who drain “coffers” to prop up a failing entity.

    like an ” irrevocable trust”, set the parameters so politicians cannot touch any $$$ going into that special fund — here, they attempt or do put nearly all funds into the “general fund” knowing that they can legally “tap” $$ as they want like the hurricane funds which was created to assist residents who sustain damages, but politicians continually tap this fund to pay for other things — their logic is hurricane fund has enough money now so they continually tap it to pay for other things.

    hope and pray that a major hurricane does not hit Oahu where major damages will not be repaired for years — infrastructure will be damaged, electrical grid will take years to fix, lack of building materials, food shortage, gas same thing, etc. — it will come down to who gets first preference

    Hong Kong would be a good case study as they pump millions from horse racing into education and medical needs.

    just a thought!

  26. Capt Ron May 16, 2018 9:37 am

    #25 A-House. Your heart is good, but remember this. Those you hope to make the restrictions are the same ones who are creating the problem. They won’t set up anything they can’t break.

  27. DC Warrior May 16, 2018 9:56 am

    #25 A-House, look at California. The Lotto $ goes to education, but then the legislature slashed all other spending. In order for your scheme to work, all the other funding sources would need to be protected too – perhaps by putting property tax in too?

  28. Patti May 16, 2018 11:23 am

    I am all for the Powerball Lottery providing Hawaii stipulates that anyone receiving winnings from the lottery, be it small or large, will forfeit all said winnings if they have received or are receiving any form of welfare benefits such as Section8, foodstamps, free bus passes etc., going back 3 yrs.

    Gambling is not an option for those receiving welfare.
    Hawaii needs to get tougher on welfare.

  29. SteveM May 16, 2018 12:47 pm

    RE: #19
    Yup. My solution is to give Kahoolawe to the Hawaiians to create a sovereign Hawaiian nation with the caveat that their territorial seas are only 300 yards. Then they can have gambling and tourism which would make them the richest island in Hawaii.

    Tourism in the form of gamers and cruise ships that would call there and be in compliance with the antiquated Passenger Vessel Service Act of 1886 as they cruise all the islands. All islands would benefit from the daily invasion of 2,500 tourists waving fistfuls of bucks from each ship. Good news is that they are all gone by nightfall as they sail to the next island.

  30. bg May 16, 2018 1:14 pm

    Most of the talk has been of physical facilities here. If it happens, it’ll be incredibly interesting to watch the battle over who will possess the licenses (assuming it will be regulated).

    I do believe the biggest impact to Mr and Mrs Everyday Person will be the online sites. Those too could be licensed and regulated in Hawaii. All you have to do is google these international and off-shore sites to begin to realize how persuasive and pervasive they are. I’m inclined to believe the claims that many are fueled by crime/drug syndicates. What easier way to launder money? But that’s another conversation.

    Major sports know the gift horse that’s been dumped in their laps and are, no doubt, scrambling to find every avenue to profit from. They also know they have to taken every precaution to protect the integrity of the games in order to protect their gold mine. The powerful aspect of online betting is the ability to use program algorithms to instantly spot “questionable bets” and suspend betting on a game pending investigation. This would be a powerful deterrent to fixing games. Even more importantly, the syndicates’ revenues would be tremendously hurt by legal betting. Better yet, ban betting on high school and UH games. There’s plenty of other games to bet on.

    If there are state certified and regulated websites, there would also be revenues. Perhaps a lot more than we may think. There are no capital costs for a physical facility, No or little expenses for personnel, entertainment, marketing, transportation, etc. While folks may not want to go holo holo to a swanky place, a huge percentage owns a smartphone. Definitely a cheap and lucrative way to go.

  31. suckkabooya May 16, 2018 4:47 pm

    Lots of teenagers (and younger) own cell phones too. Somebody got to figure that part out to keep it out of the hands of the young, impulsive, undeveloped mind.

  32. bg May 16, 2018 6:53 pm


    Your point is a major concern. However, with the volume of $$ involved as well as the major sports groups, it should get done. Will there be cheating/law breaking? No doubt. Look at what goes on now in Hawaii with laws that prohibit gambling. Actually, I think the greater threat is from older, impulsive, underdeveloped minds!

  33. Chicken Grease May 16, 2018 7:38 pm

    So just who is included in this “Hawaii middle class that will irresponsibly and easily waste their money on SPORTS gambling every day/week if sports gambling is legalized here in the islands”?

    Probably the same types who just as easily visit Vegas 10 times a year. No problem there. Right?

  34. Chicken Grease May 16, 2018 7:39 pm

    Oh. Magnum P.I. TV series remake on CBS, same network. Should make Joe Moore happy 🤪:


  35. Stephen Tsai May 16, 2018 9:28 pm

    New post: http://www.hawaiiwarriorworld.com/?p=45923

Comments are closed.