Illinois Sports Betting To Be Ready By March Madness
When it comes to watching sports, there is a big faction of the country that likes to spice it up a little by betting on the games. Sports betting in America is becoming more widely accepted. Even on ESPN, the screen is surrounded by odds and shows are dedicated to sports betting.
On SportsCenter Scott Van Pelt does a segment called "bad beats." Essentially showing how someone might have gotten the short end of the stick on a last-second shot.
It's a billion dollar industry and Illinois wants its share of it. In June, a gambling expansion bill was past which included legalizing sports betting in Illinois. Even though it was passed, the state has been dragging its feet in setting official rules and passing out licenses to operate sports books. However, Governor JB Pritzker said that by March Madness this year, it will be open for business according to WREX.
There are three casinos that have already been issued a temporary sports betting permit, Rivers Casino in Des Plaines, Grand Victoria in Elgin, and Argosy in Alton. The new Hard Rock in Rockford still needs approval.
There are some aspects of the bill that professional gamblers don't like. Illinois will prohibit betting on in-state collegiate teams. So even if the University of Illinois is a powerhouse and you'd like to place a bet, you're out of luck.
One of the latest trends from casinos that allow sports betting is an app on your phone. This allows you to make bets without leaving the comfort of your home. They also use GPS tracking to ensure that the bettor is in Illinois while making the bet. They tested it with the app from an Iowa casino and found as soon as you crossed into Illinois, you were no longer able to place bets.
FanDuel and DraftKings will also be allowed to offer mobile sports betting but not until 18 months after sports betting goes live here.
For those wondering, the first game of March Madness is scheduled for St. Patrick's Day, Tuesday March 17th.
Do you think it was a good idea to allow sports gambling in Illinois? Tell us in the comments.