Regulated sports betting in the United States has been an unmitigated success as decades of pent-up demand is unleashed during every big US sporting event. The NCAA basketball tournament (AKA “March Madness”) was a perfect example of how those big events drive big handles, and big revenue numbers. Just take a look at what happened in Rhode Island’s wagering numbers in March 2021.
Rhode Island is the smallest US State, so it’s numbers should be taken in that context. That said, this tiny corner of the US sports betting market saw it’s sports betting revenue leap an astonishing 372.4 percent over March 2020, while its revenue came out at $4 million. That’s 333.7 percent higher than March 2020. Of course March 2020 may not be the best benchmark for success, since most sports were shut down completely then, but the bounceback is what’s really important here. $4 million extra is a huge amount of money for a single month in a tiny state like Rhode Island.
More specifically, the handle for the entire state during March 2021 was $38.6 million. That up considerably from the $8 million that was wagered during March 2020 (apparently the players in RI didn’t take to table tennis wagering the same players did in other parts of the country). According to a report on LegalSportsBetting.com, about $21 million of those wagers were placed via mobile apps, which confirms the growing preference for on-the-go betting in the United States. That number is up 589 percent over March 2020.
Even adjusted for the pandemic, sports betting handles and revenue across the US show that Americans are embracing regulated wagering in a significant manner.