47 million Americans expected to bet during March Madness

Posted at 3:26 PM, Mar 16, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-16 19:10:06-04

According to the American Gaming Association, 47 million Americans are expected to wager on the 2021 March Madness tournament.

While that is about the same number that places bets in 2019, the way bets are being placed has changed.

The AGA says that three times as many Americans will place their bet with an online sports book and the number of Americans placing wages at brick-and-mortar sports books will double.

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The dramatic growth in sports betting’s popularity can be attributed to the expansion of the legal market, accord to the AGA.

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In 2019, more than $350 million was wagered in Las Vegas, which is more than was bet on the Super Bowl that year.

Sportsbooks netted an average of $32.7 million from 2017 to 2019, according to

Unfortunately, the tournament was canceled in 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic and Las Vegas took a big hit.

Because of that, wins plummeted to $1.5 million for March in 2020, a 95/5% year-over-year decrease.

More people are expected to bet in person in Las Vegas on the basketball tournament than Super Bowl.

At that time, capacity was still limited to 25% and many people were still not traveling because of the coronavirus pandemic. Since then, the capacity has been increased to 50% and many more people are visiting Las Vegas.

The first full day of this year’s NCAA tournament will begin on March 19. All of the games are being held in Indianapolis, Indiana.