The Honolulu Police Department said late Tuesday there is not enough evidence to open a criminal investigation into allegations of point shaving by a member or members of the University of Hawaii Warriors football program.
Point shaving happens when one or more members of a sports team prevent a team from covering a published point spread, often purposely failing to score as many points as the team was expected to make. Gamblers who know the information in advance can win extra money by betting on the team that was not expected to do as well but does better as a result of point shaving.
HPD put out a statement which read: "The Honolulu Police Department became aware of the allegation in early November when UH officials gave a copy of an anonymous letter to the HPD. At this time there is not enough information to open a criminal investigation." Unless the department receives additional information, it would not be able to continue with the criminal probe, an HPD spokeswoman said.
Earlier in the day Tuesday, a spokeswoman for UH President MRC Greenwood released a statement that said:
"On November 3, 2011, the UH Manoa Office of Admissions received an anonymous letter alleging 'point shaving' by unnamed football players of UH football games."
"Recognizing the seriousness of these allegations, UH leadership acted promptly and responsibly by immediately alerting the Honolulu Police Department and providing the letter to them."
"Board of Regents Chair Eric Martinson and President MRC Greenwood met personally with Chief Louis Kealoha to offer UH?s full cooperation with HPD?s inquiry."
"UH has alerted the NCAA about the anonymous letter and its contents and, in discussions with them, has been informed that it is 'doing exactly what you need to be doing' in this situation," Greenwood said.
"We respect the process of the police investigation, therefore UH will not comment further at this point," the written statement said.
The football team was favored by Western Athletic Conference coaches and the media to win the WAC football championship in its final season of WAC membership.
But because of the team's poor performance this fall, the Warriors will most likely not finish higher than third in the conference.
Law enforcement sources said UH officials could have passed these anonymous charges on to police because they didn't want to be accused of being another Penn State, where athletic officials have been fired and even criminally charged for not coming forward sooner to report or stop allegations of sex abuse by a coach.
Privately, UH officials said these anonymous charges could be coming from disgruntled gamblers, who are upset they've lost money from the Warriors' losing season so far on the football field.
After winning 10 games in 2010, the Warriors are 5-6 this year. They're 3-7-1 against the point spread and have failed to beat thespread in nearly two months.