By Matthew Brown
Sports Capital Journalism Program, IUPUI

On October 31, 2017, one lucky man walked away with $14 million after betting on the Los Angeles Dodgers to win Game 6 of the World Series. The mysterious gambler, nicknamed Sir Let it Ride by then Sports Illustrated writer Daniel Rapaport, bet the winner of each of the five previous games leading up to the enormous win. After every victory he would put his winnings on the next game, and by the end of it, he collected one of the biggest payouts in sports betting history.

Sports betting is a concept the has been around since the ancient Romans held chariot races and gladiator battles in their Colosseums. In the United States, the practice started gaining popularity in the early 1800s and although its popularity has spread over the last 200 years, it still holds a stigma in today’s society.  A stigma that has some journalists and media outlets hesitant to cover certain aspects of the sports betting world.

The 2022 Associated Press Sports Editors Summer Conference will address some of these ideas and help educate journalists in a workshop called “You Wanna Bet?”

The workshops will be held June 16 in Hine Hall on the IUPUI campus at 9 a.m. and 3:45 p.m.

“Our goal is to increase the comfort level and knowledge of sports departments in covering sports betting,” panelist Zach Ewing said, “and to show them how it can be done profitably.”

The workshop, moderated by Managing Editor Mike Kates, will cover topics such as how to cover sports betting for sports departments just getting started with it, how to report on sports gambling without compromising journalism ethics, and how to make money doing so via marketing and sports ads.

“I am hoping that sports editors have a couple of take aways from this,” Kates said. “One is how to elevate their gambling coverage beyond just the odds of ‘Hey, the Bills are favored by three.’ To be able to create engaging content beyond what everyone can already access. How they can take their coverage up a notch and what tools are out there and available for them. The second part is, how to monetize on this.”

Kates, who worked for the Chicago Tribune for 25 years before becoming Managing Editor for Media Partnerships at, the Miami Herald, Kansas City Star, Rotowire and RealGM, among other sites, will moderate a discussion with three panelists:

Ewing, Director of Sports Betting & Gaming at,, The Advocate, and Times-Picayune, where he previously served as Assistant Sports Editor. He was also previously the Sports Editor at The Bakersfield Californian.

Mike Szvetitz, General Manager/Director of Content of A 22-year veteran editor, including 17 in sports, Szvetitz leads Lee Enterprises’ new digital vertical focused on sports betting.

Sara Tait, the former Indiana Gaming Commission Executive Director. She oversaw the launch of retail and mobile sports betting in Indiana on an aggressive timeline, creating a nationally praised and replicated regulatory environment. She also was the chief regulator of Indiana’s 13 casinos, which generate billions of dollars in revenue.

Kates, who has covered sports both in and out of the realm of gambling, looks forward to moderating and is excited to hear what the panel has to offer.

“The panel is great, and you know what I think makes this panel so good?” Kates stated. “It is that you have Zach, whose organization has taken one approach towards how to cover sports betting in a regulated state. They have their own vertical within their vertical and even have a sponsorship with Caesars. You’ve got Mike, who’s a longtime sports editor, who won a Pulitzer as a managing editor, and is now heading up a company’s national approach to sports betting. Then you have Sara, who has that regulatory background and understands how the sausage is made and why things work.”