Sports Betting Revenue: States currently breaking their own sports betting records

Sports Betting Revenue: States currently breaking their own sports betting records
Image © John Shishmanian / / USA TODAY NETWORK
✍️ Written by
Alicia Butler
🗓 Updated
Aug 23rd 2023

Now that sports betting is legal in more than two dozen states, gamblers haven’t wasted time placing their bets.

Sportsbooks have been generating major revenue throughout 2021 — especially since the start of football season. And more sports betting revenue translates into more tax revenue for states.

Find out which states are benefitting the most from sports betting revenue and breaking their own monthly sports betting revenue records.

Why is sports betting so popular right now?

Sports betting is certainly popular in the U.S. right now! More and more states are legalizing sports betting as state governments start to realize the tax revenue potential of this industry.

But why is sports betting so popular right now? And why are states currently smashing their land-based and online sports betting records so seemingly suddenly?

New Sports Betting Laws

One obvious answer is the legalization of sports betting in states across the country.

Back in 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned PAPSA, a 1992 federal law that said states didn’t have the right to regulate sports betting, stating PAPSA violated state sovereignty and violated the 10th Amendment of the constitution.

After this ruling, states were allowed to write their own betting laws. Some states — such as New Jersey — immediately jumped on the sports betting bandwagon (actually, New Jersey was the state that challenged PAPSA in the first place).

Though not every state jumped into the sports betting deep end right away.

Many states waited to see what sports betting would look like in other states before writing and signing their own legislation.

Online Sports Betting

Now as more and more states legalize sports betting, they’re starting to see the benefit of legalizing this form of gambling across the U.S. — mainly the tax benefits and increased creation of jobs.

Despite the fact that sports betting has been legal in many states for a few years, we haven’t seen the benefits of this decision all year long.

Because PAPSA was struck down in 2018, many states weren’t able to start talking about legislation until 2019. And then the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

Legalizing sports in states was placed on the backburner in many cases. And with many land-based sportsbooks closed because of the pandemic, we weren’t able to see the fruits of sports betting labor.

Enter: online sports betting.

As many of our day-to-day activities have moved online, so has sports betting. Many states realized that they needed to move gambling online to protect casinos and sportsbooks in the event of another major catastrophe — and to make it easier and more enjoyable to place bets.

Now, you can place bets while watching the game at your favorite sports bar, restaurant, tailgate party, or wherever you like to watch sports.

Football Season

While we’ve seen a major uptick in sports betting over the past few months, we’ve really seen some action this fall in states’ sports betting revenues.

Yes, this could have something to do with basketball or hockey, but we all know deep down what it’s really all about: football!

The start of football season kicked off sports betting in a major way this year. Many states are even rushing to get their online sports betting platforms ready to launch before the Super Bowl in February.

This year, NFL game viewership is up 9%. Not only has state gambling revenue increased thanks to the legalization of sports betting and online betting — but online betting also increases sports viewership, too.

States Breaking Sports Betting Revenue Records

Not every state has legalized sports betting, and some states have struggled to do so.

Yet, many states are currently breaking their sports betting records, thanks to legalizing sports betting and introducing online betting. Currently, New Jersey, Ohio, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Colorado, and West Virginia are all crushing their previous months’ revenue.


Currently, sports betting is not yet legal in Ohio.

But lawmakers have just approved Bill 29, which could make sports betting legal. Both the House and the Senate approved the bill on December 8, making this the first major step toward legalizing sports betting.

The state believes that sports betting will be legal and ready by 2023.

Even though it’s not yet legal to bet on sports in Ohio, the state has allowed racinos — or casino racetracks — to operate legally.

Ohio broke its own gambling revenue record in October, and the money accepted by racinos was a huge part of that victory.

Ohio racino revenue was reported for the month of October as follows:

Belterra Park: $86.4 million

Hollywood Gaming Dayton Raceway: $142.1 million

Miami Valley Gaming: $185.2 million


Connecticut only legalized sports betting in September 20201 and launched online betting in October of the same year.

Yet, this state has crushed its sports betting handle records since legalizing sports betting and online betting — and since the start of the football season.

In October, Connecticut’s total online sports betting revenue was $4,813,358. DraftKings Sportsbook brought in the most money with a whopping $3,645,466. FanDuel Sportsbook came in second with $874,160, and PlaySugarHouse came in third with $293,732.

The total tax revenue Connecticut pulled in during the month of October from online betting was $513,000. The total revenue for all online gambling was $1.7 million.

What’s so telling is that October was the first month that sports betting and online betting launched — meaning the revenue doesn’t even account for a full month of betting. The soft launch was on October 12.

New Jersey

New Jersey is a state that has broken its own sports betting revenue record several times within the past few months.

While New Jersey was the first state to legalize sports betting, it hasn’t been really hitting high numbers in sports betting revenue until recently.

In September 2021, New Jersey broke its own sports betting record. The state pulled in $1.01 billion from bets accepted at both land-based casinos and horse tracks. In October (just a month later), the state pulled in $1.3 billion worth of bets — beating its own record twice!

From sports betting alone, the state pulled in $803.1 million in October, $748.6 million in September, and $668 million in August.

In November, the state pulled in $931.6 million in sports bets, again breaking its own sports betting record.


Michigan is another state that legalized sports betting pretty early in the game. It legalized sports betting back in the spring of 2020. It legalized online gambling all the way back in December 2019.

And it’s now paying off, as the state is breaking its own sports betting revenue records, much like the other states on this list.

In October, Michigan’s sports betting revenue was $26,947,289! In September, it raked in $27,135,351 (meaning revenue actually dropped in October. Womp, womp). And in August it drew in $17,536,332.

With over a dozen land-based sportsbooks and casinos accepting sports bets — in addition to its online sportsbooks — it’s not surprising that the state is making so much money in sports betting revenue.


Colorado has also been taking advantage of the NFL season.

In September, the state beat its own sports betting handle record by raking in $408.3 million. While the handle doesn’t equate to revenue, this is still a huge milestone for Colorado.

The state of Colorado made $483,000 in tax revenue for the month of September.

Online platforms have been a major part of that, too, bringing in more revenue than land-based locations.


Pennsylvania is another state that is crushing its previous sports betting revenue records.

In September, sports betting revenue in the state totaled $48,113,670, while revenue at the end of August totaled only $25,315,958. That’s nearly double the revenue of the previous month!

While September saw a huge spike in betting (yep, probably thanks to football), total revenue did dip a bit in October from the previous month, totaling only $42,282,405 (still way better than August’s total, though).

West Virginia

West Virginia broke its sports betting handle and revenue record in November.

The total handle in the state was just over $83 million, and the mobile handle alone accounted for $68.178 million. The state’s revenue totaled $6.285 million in November.

The previous month, the handle was only $61.68 million with revenue of $2.667 million, meaning the handle was up by nearly 35% and the total revenue was up more than 100%!

States Missing Sports Betting Handle Records

While many states are currently breaking their sports betting revenue records, not every state is doing so with flying colors.

New York recently legalized online betting, but we’re still waiting for the mobile sportsbooks to launch.

At land-based sportsbooks, October’s betting revenue was only $1,718,614, which was lower than the previous month’s revenue of $3 million.

Of course, once mobile betting launches, this number is expected to rise again.

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