January Hoops Helps Indiana Post Another Record-Breaking Sports Betting Month

Posted on: February 14, 2021, 04:15h. 

Last updated on: July 26, 2022, 11:58h.

The Hoosier State’s growth in sports betting continues into 2021. That’s according to the Indiana Gaming Commission, which released January’s wagering totals on Friday.

Indiana sports betting
Purdue’s Jaden Ivey drives past Indiana’s Rob Phinisee during Purdue’s 81-69 win over the Hoosiers at IU’s Assembly Hall on Jan. 14. The game between the big in-state rivals helped the state generate more than $133 million in basketball bets during the month, according to the Indiana Gaming Commission. (Image: Purdue Athletics)

Bettors wagered $348.2 million in January, up 11.2 percent from the $313.1 million handle reported in December. It’s also more than double the January 2020 total handle of $170.8 million. It’s also nearly $100 million more than what Indiana reported in November ($251.4 million).

The amount the sportsbooks took also rose, with revenues coming in at $29.3 million. That’s a 20.6 percent increase from December’s $24.3 million. It’s also a whopping 127.1 percent jump from the $12.9 million operators won in January 2020.

As the sportsbooks win more, so too, does the Indiana state government. The 9.5 percent rate means the government received nearly $2.8 million in tax funds.

Indiana has posted a record-breaking handle each month since September. While sports betting has only been legal since September 2019, Indiana’s continued growth in sports betting in recent months still can be considered remarkable, especially since a couple of its neighboring states have allowed mobile sports betting in recent months.

In Illinois, that state has established itself as the fourth-largest sports betting market in the country. To the north, Michigan launched online sports betting in late January. Analysts reported that online sports betting traffic was tops in the nation for its opening weekend.

Indiana Shows Why It’s a Basketball State

With football season ending, Indiana will be hard-pressed to keep its growth streak going in February. But there’s one thing the state has going for it – the fans love basketball, and that showed in January.

In January, Hoosiers bet a whopping $133.2 million on roundball. That’s the most ever bet on one sport in a month. It helps that Indiana has 10 Division I college basketball teams and the NBA’s Indiana Pacers. In addition, plenty of people from Kentucky, Ohio, and Illinois (where in-state college betting is not allowed) cross the state line to bet on their teams.

By comparison, football represented $77.6 million of the bets. There was one full week of NFL regular season action, plus three weekends of playoffs, which included the Indianapolis Colts in the first round. On the college level, there were playoff games available to bet, as well as the Outback Bowl, which featured the Indiana Hoosiers.

The IGC counts parlay bets separately by the IGC. Bettors made $86.1 million worth of those multi-event wagers in January.

Hoosiers Bet Big Online

As with months past, online betting dominated. Wagers made on phones and other devices totaled $296.5 million, or 85.2 percent of the action. Online accounted for 84.1 percent of the money bet in December.

Data from the IGC shows that the rise of new apps in recent months certainly has not cannibalized online sports betting in the state.

Indiana had four online sportsbooks in January 2020. There are now 10 available statewide.

DraftKings saw its handle more than double in a year, going from $66 million in January 2020 to $122.6 million last month. FanDuel, over the same time frame, went from $49.5 million to $89.2 million.

Revenue wise, DraftKings won $9.4 million, while FanDuel got $8.2 million last month.

Among the newer arrivals, BetMGM reported a $52.4 million handle and revenues of $3.7 million in January. PointsBet took in $13.5 million in bets and claimed gross revenues of $1.4 million.