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Florida Gators' Nick Calathes violated no rules in online gambling, university officials say

GAINESVILLE — University of Florida officials said Friday night that basketball player Nick Calathes violated no NCAA rules in running up a nearly $600 gambling debt playing online poker.

Calathes, a sophomore guard from Casselberry, was in the starting lineup for Friday's game against Toledo.

"We became aware of certain allegations over the weekend and immediately looked into it," athletic director Jeremy Foley said. "We reviewed everything very thoroughly and are satisfied with our results. We have no eligibility issues and are very comfortable that this issue is resolved based on our review."

According to NCAA rules, athletic department staff and student-athletes cannot knowingly provide information to individuals involved in organized gambling activities, solicit or accept any bets or participate in any gambling activity that involves intercollegiate athletics. Calathes and other UF players were questioned during the school's inquiry.

"I talked to Coach (Billy) Donovan, I talked to the school, and nothing happened," said Calathes, who confirmed he has played online poker. "I didn't do anything wrong. I didn't do anything illegal. I didn't do anything wrong at all."

Donovan said he is satisfied the university's investigation was thorough.

"The only thing I'm going to say about any of that stuff is I think the unfortunate part in all of this is nobody on our team has done anything wrong," he said. "It's amazing to me how stories can be written or talked about when someone's done nothing wrong. We heard rumors and we reacted to the rumors, responded to them, talked to Nick, talked to our team, and Jeremy Foley and Jamie McCloskey (compliance director) handled the whole situation. I'm not going to talk about anything as it relates to anything about this because nobody did anything wrong and, to me, it's not even a story."

Antonya English can be reached at english@sptimes.com.

Florida Gators' Nick Calathes violated no rules in online gambling, university officials say 11/14/08 [Last modified: Friday, November 14, 2008 9:58pm]
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