Whether it’s an NFL game, a basketball match or a baseball contest, professional sports leagues have long been concerned that legalized betting could lead to attempts to fix games in favor of gambling. That’s not just an abstract worry — recent scandals have raised eyebrows about the prevalence of betting among NFL players and even coaches.
As betting becomes more widespread, sportsbooks are partnering with professional leagues to create new revenue streams and monitor betting activity. This has given the leagues a greater visibility into betting patterns and led to increased scrutiny of player conduct.
The rules around betting on NFL matches vary by state, but the NFL and other pro sports have strict guidelines that limit player involvement in wagering markets. For example, a player cannot place bets while in uniform and must not be involved with any company that provides services to a betting platform. Similarly, a coach must not be in uniform while taking part in any wagering activities.
NBA players are banned from participating in any wagering activity involving the National Basketball Association or its properties, such as Super Bowl squares and NCAA tournament brackets. However, players can participate in non-NBA-related wagers such as fantasy sports and horse racing.
The first official sportsbook launched in July 2021 and online sports betting was introduced in February 2022. The state’s sports betting industry is regulated by the Gaming Control Board and bettors can place wagers on both in-state professional and collegiate teams.