2014 has been a turbulent year for Florida State QB Jameis Winston. Now, a gambling website is on the verge of making the sophomore signal caller's season even more fraught with controversy.
According to a story posted on IBN Sports Wrap on November 3, Winston colluded with his former high school teammate Chris Rabb to shave points during FSU's victory against the Louisville Cardinals last Thursday. IBN offers their version of the events:
• Bookie of Chris Rabb (Former HS Teammate) of Jameis Winston is "alleging" that they shared gambling account together since beginning of October.
• They bet on NFL/CFB/NBA/MLB (nothing crazy).
• The bookie claims Chris Rabb squared up weekly on wins or losses.
• Account is run through local bookie in Birmingham,Alabama (internet/phone wagers accepted also in person). Bookie had no knowledge of Winston's connection to account when Chris Rabb approached him about setting up active wagering account.
• Bookie gave Chris Rabb Limit of $1,000 per week (nothing big here), allowed to make max wager of $400 on straight plays (On Internet) / $300 on teasers : only way to get more max bet for individual game is to meet bookie in person with cash at least 60 minutes before that particular game starts.
• Ex Teammate asked for permission to bet $5,500 on Louisville (1st Half), told to have funds available before game time (Note: biggest bet he made since opening account in October)
• Bookie meets with Chris Rabb morning before Louisville / Fla St game and receives $5,500 from Mr Rabb with instructions to bet Louisville +1 (1st Half) -110 to win back $5,000. Bet was placed and Louisville won 1st Half vs Fla St (21-7). Mr Rabb is now suppose to receive $5,000 for winning bet + his $5,500 initial bet (square up day is Tuesday)
• Bookie gets information late Sunday night that he's been "Played for a fool" as Mr Rabb and Jameis Winston are former teammates and conspired together on the above mentioned first half wager. Bookie wants no part of paying the debt. (i think he should pay he took the bet he knows the risk... just my opinion)
IBN also provides screenshots given to them by the bookie, which they say are sourced from the gambling account of Chris Rabb. The screenshots show betting action from October 27 to November 1. For the most part, as IBN points out, the bets placed by the account allegedly linked to Rabb and Winston are $300 or less. However, the notable exception is on October 30, when Florida State played Louisville. For this game, as is mentioned above, the account bet $5.5K, and won.
IBN also claims they reached out to Rabb for comment, and were met with anger when they contacted him over the phone.
"Fuck boy how did you get my number?" Rabb reportedly said to IBN. "Mind your business boy."
To provide evidence of Rabb's relationship with Winston, IBN uses a May 16 story from Bleacher Report. In the story, Rabb and his brother, Ricky, are quoted multiple times about their close friendship with Winston and, according to the article, "have known Winston since he was in the sixth grade". Ironically, the story ends with a quote from Ricky, who says, "[Winston]'s made some mistakes. He knows that, but he is staying positive. You can't expect a 20-year-old to do everything perfect."
Now, there's obviously a lot to unpack here. After reading IBN's story, it's easy to be convinced of some connection between Winston and the gambling taking place. However, until we have further authentication of the documents attached to Rabb's supposed betting account, and a deeper investigation has been done regarding the bookie supposedly sourcing IBN with all this information (which may or may not be happening), we remain skeptical. As it stands, too much information is reliant upon an unnamed source for us to responsibly endorse IBN's reporting.
Furthermore, if the first half line for the Louisville-Florida State game was +1, then why did Winston decide to put his team in such a deep hole at halftime? With a perfect season hanging in the balance, was Winston really so confident in his abilities that he believed he would be able to lead his team back from a 21-point deficit? This isn't even to speak of the actual $5.5K bet itself, which seems meager compared to the millions of dollars Winston stands to make next year in the NFL.
Basically, why take the risk? If Winston wanted the money so badly, then surely there was some Florida State booster who would've gladly forked over that cash instead, right?
[via TMZ Sports]
TMZ Sports reports that the University of Alabama at Birmingham, where Chris Rabb plays defensive end for the Blazers, is now launching an investigation into the gambling allegations. They are currently in "fact-finding mode -- contacting people who may know something about the allegations to figure out if Rabb has done anything wrong."
Stay tuned for more developments on the story.