March 26, 2024 2 min read


ESPN Host Calls Betting Pick “Risk-Free,” Sparks Online Outrage

The statement sparked discussions about whether “risk-free” should be a term that is ever associated with gambling

Rece Davis, an American sports television journalist for ESPN, has corrected a controversial statement he made last weekend. Davis, who had said that an analysts’ betting recommendation is a “risk-free investment,” retracted his earlier statement, reminding players to wager responsibly.

The original comment was made during College GameDay, a pre-game show broadcast airing on ESPN and hosted by Davis. In that episode, Davis spoke with Erin Dolan, an analyst for ESPN Bet, a joint venture between ESPN and PENN Entertainment.

In addition to promoting the ESPN Bet wagering platform, Dolan also recommended betting on Northwestern to score under 60.5 points during the second round against UConn in the NCAA Tournament. Davis described her March Madness recommendation as a “risk-free investment,” which immediately aggravated many people on the internet.

You know what? Some would call this wagering, gambling. I think the way you’ve sold this, I think what it is, is a risk-free investment.

Rece Davis

The statement sparked discussions about whether “risk-free” should be a term that is ever associated with gambling. Because of that, Davis was quick to correct himself and remind people of the dangers and risks associated with wagering.

Gambling Is Never Risk-Free, Davis Says

On Sunday, Davis published a statement on X, in which he apologized, saying that his comment was “tongue-in-cheek.” He explained that his statement was more of an exaggerated joke and said that “risk-free investing” doesn’t exist.

Obviously, there are risks. Though I’m not a gambler, I strongly encourage those who do partake, do so with prudence, care, caution, fiscal and personal responsibility and never over-extend.

Rece Davis

Davis added that the sports sector is unpredictable and that wagering is tricky. He advised players to manage monetary risks and realize that his comment was not meant to be taken at face value.

Davis’ statement came amid Problem Gambling Awareness Month, which is part of the reason why it sparked so much controversy. Another reason is the fact that the US continues to discuss whether “risk-free” is an appropriate term and whether it should be associated with gambling at all.  

In other ESPN-related news, the company announced that this year’s edition of its Men’s Tournament Challenge has collected 22.6 million completed brackets before the start of March Madness. The most popular college basketball fantasy contest in America attracted more people than ever thanks to its numerous new features.


Angel has a passion for all forms of writing, be it fiction or nonfiction. His curious nature gives him an ace up his sleeve when researching a new topic. Angel’s thirst for knowledge, paired with adaptability, always helps him find his way around.

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