Rookie and veteran players in the NFL begin reporting to training camp this week, which means the biggest sports betting season of the year is nearly upon us.
And you can bet several states will push hard for their sportsbooks to launch before September 5 — the start of the 2019 NFL season.
The gaming commission for Indiana recently handed out nine temporary licenses to six casinos and three off-track betting parlors. Legal sports betting officially goes into effect on September 1 for the Hoosier State, and the permits allow eligible operators to start construction on sportsbooks.
However, officials from the Indiana Gaming Commission said permanent license holders would likely not launch sportsbooks for the public when the law goes into effect in five weeks but added that they also aren’t ruling out the possibility either.
A launch is not scheduled for any sportsbook in the state, but members will meet on August 28 to potentially adopt Indiana’s new sports betting rules.
Ditto can be said about Iowa sports betting, which could have sportsbooks launch before or after the NFL season opener depending on whether regulators can agree on a set of guidelines.
The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission is scheduled to meet on July 30, and if the rules are approved at the meeting, then sportsbooks could launch by mid-August. If voted against, then the commission will meet again on August 22, and a launch would likely be pushed back until after the first week of NFL action.
But speaking of sportsbook launches, New York became the 10th state to offer sports betting last week when Rivers Casino in Schenectady accepted the first legal wager. FanDuel also opened its sportsbook at Tioga Downs in Nichols on Friday, giving the Empire State two local options ahead of football season.
Sportsbooks coming to two tribal casinos in North Carolina is a pretty safe bet unless Gov. Roy Cooper chooses to veto the bill within the next month, which is highly unlikely according to reports.
The NC House passed the Senate’s tribal sports betting bill last week, and both chambers are also considering legislation that would establish a gaming commission to study the impact of gambling further. A full report of its findings would be presented by mid-2020 and lawmakers could then proceed to consider the legalization of statewide commercial sports betting.
Lawmakers in Ohio are still debating two sports betting bills with the main difference coming from who would regulate sportsbooks in the state.
Despite this impasse, an Ohio state senator is having some fun in the meantime and recently introduced Senate Concurrent Resolution 4 which would designate February 11, 2020 as “Odds Day” to honor the 30th anniversary of Columbus native and pro boxer James “Buster” Douglas 42/1 (+4200) longshot victory over heavyweight champ Mike Tyson.
Only one problem: The “42 to 1 odds” betting line for the fight has never been confirmed by any sportsbook, and ESPN even aired a “30 For 30” episode last year on how Buster’s odds maxed out at 37/1. Still impressive, but Ohio lawmakers should use the facts — or maybe pass a sports betting bill first — before making “Odds Day” a statewide holiday.
Lastly, Pennsylvania launched online and mobile sports betting this summer, but until last week, bettors using Apple iPhones and iPads were unable to wager on sports via app nor web browser.
SugarHouse came up with a temporary workaround for the issue by letting users access their site on a browser. This issue stems from recent changes Apple made to the App Store guidelines that could affect several online sportsbooks in a few weeks.
And remember: If you want to see if legislation on allowing sportsbooks is being considered by your state legislature, check out our US sports betting bill tracker for the latest action happening in your hometown.