Four States in Two Years: How Sports Betting is Going

Four States in Two Years: How Sports Betting is Going

The United States sports betting industry in 2022 is massive, but that wasn’t always the case. Legal sports betting first became a possibility back in May 2018, and it took many states some time before they decided that this was the correct path to pursue.

A handful of states left the decision up to voters back in November 2020, and four states voted to approve or legalize sports betting. Those four states were Louisiana, Maryland, Nebraska, and South Dakota, and all four of them have taken a different approach over the past few years.

There are now over 30 states that have legalized sports betting, and some are still waiting to launch. That would include one state from the list above while another is still working on getting mobile betting up and running two years later.

Louisiana is currently leading the pack out of the first states that legalized in November 2020, but that could be changing in 2023 and beyond.

Louisiana Wastes Little Time

When Louisiana legalized sports wagering, it became the first in the history of the U.S. to not approve the industry statewide. There were a handful of parishes that voted against legal sports betting, and the mobile sportsbooks aren’t allowed to accept bets in that part of the state.

Sports betting has been extremely profitable in the state of Louisiana, though, as the all-time handle is more than $1.5 billion. The state has been able to collect around $22 million in tax revenue from the industry.

A large majority of the sports betting handle has come from online or mobile sportsbooks in Louisiana.

Maryland, Nebraska Can’t Figure Things Out

The two states that have struggled to get sports betting up and running since November 2020 are Maryland and Nebraska. Maryland at least has retail sports betting available, but Nevada hasn’t been able to get anything going.

Retail sports betting in Maryland first launched in December 2021, but the state has struggled to figure out mobile betting. It does sound like that portion of the industry will launch in either late November or early December 2022.

Maryland will become a large sports betting market when mobile betting is offered, as there are some terrific operators preparing to launch. Getting things rolling during the 2022 NFL season will prove to be beneficial as well.

Nebraska is going to be launching retail sports betting at some point in the near future, but an official launch date hasn’t been set. The state has also placed a ban on college sports betting, and that’s going to cost the state a significant amount of money.

As soon as Nebraska is able to launch, it will join a slew of states in the Midwest that have legalized the industry.

South Dakota Says No to Mobile

South Dakota continues to be a very small sports betting market, and it’s due to the fact that they are not interested in any form of mobile betting. It took the state all the way until September of 2021 to launch sports betting at all, and all of the wagering was done at retail casinos in the state.

The total sports betting handle in South Dakota since September 2021 is just over $7 million, which is a slow week for sportsbooks throughout the country. Total sports betting revenue hasn’t even hit $800,000 since the industry launched, and there isn’t major growth expected unless the state shifts gears and approves mobile wagering.