The Iowa State Cyclones have turned their football program around thanks to head coach Matt Campbell, but the program is now facing a massive bump in the road following gambling accusations and tampering charges surrounding multiple players.
Cyclones quarterback Hunter Dekkers headlines the list of four current or former student athletes charged with tampering with records related to an investigation by the Iowa Criminal Division into them gambling on games. According to ESPN.com's David Purdum, 366 bets were placed on DraftKings from an account under Dekkers' name, with 26 of those bets being placed directly on Iowa State sporting events and at least one being placed directly on an Iowa State football game against Oklahoma.
Although Dekkers did not compete in the game against Oklahoma, most of the bets placed were made while the Cyclones quarterback was under 21 years old, which is the legal age requirement for sports betting in the state of Iowa.
Hunter Dekkers Is Stepping Away From Iowa State
In a statement from his attorney, Dekkers informed the school that he will be stepping away from the program while the investigation is ongoing.
"So he can focus on his studies and on the defense of this criminal charge, Hunter has informed the University and the coaching staff that he cannot participate in fall football camp," attorney Mark Weinhardt said.
Dekkers was the team's full-time starter this past season, going 4-8 in 12 games with 3,044 passing yards, 19 touchdowns, and 14 interceptions. The 22-year-old was expected to retain his role as the starting quarterback for 2023, but now it is unlikely that he will see the field this season.
Along with Dekkers, sophomore Dodge Sauser and former player Eyioma Uwazurike have been charged with tampering in the ongoing investigation. Sophomore wrestler Paniro Johnson has also been charged.
The Cyclones now face more questions than answers with one month until their season opener against Northern Iowa on September 2. Replacement options for Dekkers include redshirt freshman Rocco Becht, true freshman J.J. Kohl, and Butte College transfer Tanner Hughes.
If the Cyclones can't figure out their QB situation by the opener, then it could be another disappointing season for a program that went 9-3 just a few seasons ago.
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