Federal documents unsealed last week shed light on the man under an FBI spotlight and linked University of Tulsa athletic director Ross Parmley to him in the process.
READ: TULSA SUSPENDS AD PARMLEY (http://bit.ly/TulsaAD)
Teddy Mitchell, along with his two sons and several others, is charged with 81 counts of illegal gambling and money laundering. All three were arrested Friday.
A 2004 investigation into Oklahoma City bookies revealed Mitchell as a prominent player in the illegal gambling circuit, according to the affidavit.
It also accuses the 58-year-old Mitchell of operating an illegal gambling ring for at least 20 years.
A book published in 2005 about the life of Oklahoman "Pody Poe" -- an infamous crime figure in the 1970s and 1980s -- dedicated an entire chapter to his protege, Mitchell.
Investigators found through interviews and records that Mitchell was at one time the youngest bookie in Oklahoma and grew his business to the largest or second-largest in the state, the documents state.
Federal prosecutors claim the Mitchells' backyard pool house served as an illegal high-stakes poker room dating back to 2004, with pots reportedly reaching $25,000 a hand.
In 2010, Mitchell's wife, Julie Mitchell, was found beaten to death inside the couple's home. Her murder remains unsolved.
"All I can assure everyone is that it has nothing to do with the murder," Teddy Mitchell's attorney, Scott Adams, told KFOR in Oklahoma City. "It's obviously some other allegations that we have heard in the press recently."
The jury trial is set to begin April 9 in an Oklahoma City federal court.