March Madness is the biggest annual sports betting event in the United States. While the Super Bowl is the biggest single day event, the NCAA basketball tournament leading up to the Final Four runs through three weekends.
Reports from the American Gaming Association (AGA) suggest that close to $8.5 billion in combined bets will be generated through the March Madness tournament and every 1 out of 5 Americans will make a wager in one form of the other.
Las Vegas has always been the major betting hub for the NCAA tournament but this year things will be different.
Nevada has to now share the March Madness gambling pie with seven other states.
A Supreme Court decision lifted a nationwide ban on sports betting outside Nevada and now seven other states have allowed wagering facilities in casinos and even racetracks. The seven states are New Jersey, Delaware, Mississippi, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, New Mexico and West Virginia.
March Madness brings in billions in revenue for the gambling industry. While the Super Bowl gets everyone excited, the action is over in one day. March Madness starts off with a bang on 19 March and a total of 48 games will be played between Thursday and Sunday.
The NCAA college tournament will showcase the best young basketball talent in the country and will draw in strong viewership as well as betting action. States that have legalized betting, will be positive of bringing in some strong numbers and cutting into Las Vegas’s profits.
Nevada Sportsbooks Remains Confident
Despite the emergence of a number of betting options for the American public, Nevada remains confident that it will continue to rule the roost when it comes to sports betting action. Gaming analysts predict that sportsbooks in Nevada could bring in upwards of $365 million during the March Madness tournament. Nevada is expected to take over 75 percent of the betting action during the tournament.
The AGA estimates that $4.6 billion out of the proposed $8.5 billion in sports bets will come from tournament brackets. It is hard to predict how much each of the states where sports betting is legalized will generate from March Madness. This is because this is the first year since the sports betting ban has been lifted and there are no previous numbers to serve as a guide.