Sports Official Betting

Official betting consists of bets on events sanctioned by sports leagues, including regular season games and playoffs. The most popular bets are money lines, point spreads and parlays. While legal in many states, sports governing bodies remain concerned about the potential for irresponsible wagering to harm their game’s integrity. They’re beefing up in-house technology, deploying security staff and partnering with integrity firms to detect violations.

The NCAA is also pushing for state laws that protect student-athletes from harassment and coercion, address the negative impacts of problem gambling and preserve the integrity of college athletics. The organization also launched its first e-learning module that educates students on the harms of sports betting and helps them recognize signs of gambling problems in themselves or others.

Amid all of this activity, some states are lagging behind in allowing sports betting. Ohio is a sports-crazy state that was one of the last to legalize sports betting. But in 2021, the legislature passed a bill and Gov. Mike DeWine approved it. Bettors can now place bets at online and land-based Ohio sportsbooks.

Another state that’s dragging its heels is Missouri. Neighboring Oklahoma is fully live with sports betting, but lawmakers in Missouri can’t get a law passed. Amid a 2023 legislative session that was plagued by filibusters, lawmakers couldn’t even vote on a measure to authorize sports betting. A ballot measure could bring the issue to voters this fall, however. And neighboring Mississippi is poised to join the party, too, with a bill signed by Gov. Kevin Stitt in April that permits the state’s four Native American casinos to partner with commercial operators for sports betting.