Iowa sports activities betting hits every day document for February

DES MOINES – “Have device, play” is the mantra of many Iowans who can now access sports betting websites through their smartphones, computers and other electronic gateways.

Ever since Iowa dropped the requirement that sports bettors first personally register at a state-licensed casino, players have jumped into the action with record-breaking clips, with an all-time stake of $ 149.5 million in January.

While February saw a slight decline, with $ 143.6 million wagering on professional and college sports events, the state set a daily record as the month had just 28 days – $ 125.2 million was loud monthly figures from the Internet instead of in-house from the state Racing & Gaming Commission.

Last month’s data included about $ 16.2 million wagered on the Super Bowl in the state, an Iowa record for a single sporting event since betting became legal here in August 2019.

“Iowa remains perhaps the most compelling case study of the implications of personal registration requirements,” said Jessica Welman, an analyst at, a website dedicated to Iowa gambling options.

“February is a short month with only one NFL game, the Super Bowl. The relatively flat month-to-month results can be misleading on the surface,” noted Welman.

“But another strong performance still puts Iowa in a class of states that are either larger or have far more mature gaming markets,” she said. “And that would not be possible under the old requirements” to go to a casino first.


Initially, Iowa players were required to visit one of the 19 state-licensed Iowa casinos that had a separate sports betting license in order to set up an online account. However, that requirement disappeared on January 1, and since then more sports betting has entered into business deals with Iowa casinos and stepped up marketing efforts.

“It is certainly early in Iowa’s sports betting schedule, but the state’s sports betting market is beginning to show signs of an inflection point in terms of activity and handling,” said Bill Ordine, gambling analyst with Group. “We keep seeing that the more convenient it is for customers to try sports betting, the more likely it is for customers to participate – in this case it means registering online.”

So far, for the fiscal year that began July 1, Iowans have spent $ 712.6 million on sporting events – of which $ 546.1 million electronically and $ 166.5 million in personal locations, according to the Commission. Since sports betting was legalized, betting has surpassed the $ 1.1 billion mark.

While last month’s totals were down 3.9 percent, daily wagers hit a record $ 5.1 million, beating the previous high daily average of $ 4.8 million for the 31 days of January.

The commission reported that state taxes collected on sports games totaled $ 520,444 in February, representing a rise in state taxes of over $ 3.66 million for the current eight year 2021.

According to, Iowa bookmakers have benefited from “strong” interest in men’s college basketball – particularly Iowa and Drake No. 5, which is just outside the top 25 – with conference tournaments and NCAA men’s basketball extravaganza “March Madness” this month.

“When local teams like Iowa and Drake have a strong season, interest in betting on their games increases. We see this in every regulated sports betting market in the US, ”said Dustin Gouker, analyst at “With March Madness on the horizon, there is almost certainly more growth ahead of us. And sports betting should get an even bigger boost if Iowa or Drake can make a longer run in the NCAA tournament. “

There are currently 11 sports betting companies licensed to operate in Iowa and another 13 companies in the pipeline that have applied for a state license or have “entered into” agreements with other casinos “and are not yet licensed, said Brian Ohorilko, administrator for the state Racing and Games Commission.


According to separate commission data released on Friday, the 19 state-regulated casinos in Iowa recorded a total of nearly $ 114.5 million in adjusted gross revenue in February, bringing the total to more than $ 948 for the first eight months of the current fiscal year. Means 13 million US dollars. These combined operations generated more than $ 186.3 million in revenue for the state.

Last month’s adjusted gross earnings were down about 11 percent from February 2020, a leap year month with an extra day, Ohorilko said, and Iowa’s cold weather kept weekend guests away.

“It’s been a very tough month,” he said. “That long cold spell wasn’t good for business.”

Currently, revenues at the 19 casinos are down 3.75 percent compared to the eight months before the pandemic a year ago. However, according to Ohorilko, operators expect the current fiscal year to close on June 30 before fiscal 2020.

“We should see our sales exceed what we saw last year, but it looks like they’re likely to deviate from our 2019 numbers, which was a pretty good year,” he noted.

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