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Full Speed Ahead for Sports Gambling in the US

September 16, 2019

Based on the data from a recent survey commissioned by the American Gaming Association (AGA), it looks like the future of sports betting in the US has never been brighter.

It was only 16 months ago that the US Supreme Court lifted the nation's ban on legalized sports betting. Since that long awaited decision came down, 15 states have already passed sports betting legislation with approximately 13 of those states already accepting wagers through licensed sports books. According to the AGA's survey, there appears to be no end in sight to this growing trend.

Here's what 11,001 US residents surveyed made clear about sports betting in America:

  • 38 million US residents intend to wager on NFL games this year (15% of population
  • 24% more Americans would wager on sports if legalized in their states
  • Sports gamblers are 75% more likely to watch a game upon which they have wagered
  • Sports gamblers are 28% more likely to attend a live game upon which they have wagered
  • 51% of sports gamblers would likely watch pregame coverage on games upon which they have wagered

It's worth noting that of the 38 million people who intend to wager on NFL games this year, 31 million would have to do so through illegal bookies or offshore accounts. That's because their respective states have not yet passed the required sports betting legislation.

Motivation for Legalization

The data presented above makes clear there's a growing desire among Americans to wager legally on sports. It's something the remaining 35 states have to contemplate in the coming months.

The motivation for states to take the needed steps will have to be tax revenues. If US residents are going to wager anyways, what states can really afford to have the associated tax revenues go elsewhere?

Indiana is one of the states that have already legalized sports betting with live betting options already available. How can legislators in neighboring Kentucky, Ohio and Illinois sit by and watch their residents drive to another state and make sports bets that will benefit Indiana? It's a good bet that residents in those other three states will eventually bring pressure to bare regarding the legalization of sports betting in their states.

While there are a few states like Utah that might never relinquish its ban on sports betting for religious reasons, it looks like sports betting will likely see the light of day in most of the US by within the next couple of years.

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