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Ohio Sports Betting

Ohio Sports Betting Legalization News

Ohio is close to approving – and will be under pressure to do so – sports betting legislation in 2020, after neighboring states all approved the measure recently.

And to that end, the state was busy in 2019 with hearing and amendments and discussions around legal sports betting for Ohio’s sports-crazed residents. It was in discussion in March, before Covid-19 sidelined talks until the measure passed the House in May.

Lawmakers have made it a priority and they want a decision in the legislature, not in a referendum. Ohio Rep. Dave Greenspan has stated the urgency in getting the rules organized and a bill to the governor before the end of 2020. That won’t allow Ohio bettors to enjoy football season, but it could see them profit from college football bowl season, the Super Bowl and reboots of the new NBA and NHL seasons.

Is sports betting legal in Ohio?

It’s close, but not expected until later in 2020 for the reasons outlined above. The good news is that there seems to be bipartisan support for sports betting, as neighboring Illinois and Michigan have both adopted the measure and will start vacuuming sports betting dollars away from Ohio state tax coffers. Ohio bettors are permitted to have wagering accounts in other states, but can only wager while they are physically within the borders of those states. That is easier to do in some places than in others, but underscores the need to expedite the measure.

Where can I bet at Ohio sportsbooks?

Each Ohio sports betting proposal making the rounds call for casinos and racetracks to offer the service, along with provisions to offer mobile betting through partnerships with online operators. That would mean the following facilities would be first in line to offer sports betting or forge partnerships.

Casino City
Belterra Park Gaming & Entertainment Center Anderson Township
Hollywood Casino Columbus Columbus
Hollywood Casino Toledo Toledo
Hollywood Gaming Dayton Raceway Dayton
Hollywood Gaming Mahoning Valley Race Course Austintown
Jack Cincinnati Casino Cincinnati
Jack Cleveland Casino Cleveland
Jack Thistledown Racino North Randall
MGM Northfield Park Northfield
Miami Valley Gaming Turtlecreek Township
Scioto Downs Racino Columbus


What about mobile sports betting apps in Ohio?

Both bills embrace the idea of online sportsbooks and mobile betting apps for Ohio residents. So, rules around this will be determined, but the good news for Ohio is that there is so far no objection to this inclusive and convenient method of sports betting.

What is the legal sports betting age in Ohio?

The legal gambling age in Ohio is either 16, 18 or 21. You can play bingo as a 16-year-old, you can play keno, lotteries and bet the horses at 18, but you must be 21 to make casino bets. Sports betting is likely to follow the 21 year old limit.

Who is allowed to offer Ohio sports betting?

Existing casinos and racetracks will get first dibs to offer betting from their physical locations, in addition to the privilege of setting up online sportsbooks and online betting apps.

Who regulates or licenses Ohio sports betting?

Many amendments to Ohio HB 194 have inched the process closer to a conclusion on how sports betting gets established, overseen and taxed. There is also an Ohio SB 111 that proposes different oversight rules.

The Senate bill proposes the Casino Control Commission as regulator while the busier house bill lists the Ohio Lottery Commission as licensing body.

What sports will be favorites of Ohio sports bettors?

Ohio is football country on the college scene and also boasts a terrific array of professional teams for anxious Ohio sports betting fans.

In college football, the state featured a whopping eight FBS programs including six members of the famed MAC (Mid-American Conference). Of course, the most famous football program and the one that will attract so much betting interest is the perennial powerhouse Ohio State Buckeyes.

On the pro side, no less than three Ohio cities are home to professional franchises. In Cleveland, the NBA’s Cavaliers, the NFL’s treasured Browns and baseball’s beloved Indians will be the focus of wagering attention.

Cincinnati, in addition to hosting the American Athletic Conference Cincinnati Bearcats program in college football and college hoops, boasts the MLB’s Reds and the NFL’s Bengals. FC Cincinnati also graces the MLS schedule each year.

Over in Columbus, the NHL set up shop in the 1990s with the Columbus Blue Jackets. The Columbus Crew of MLS are also a fan favorite.

Ohio college teams with their conference affiliations are below.

Team Conference
Akron Zips Mid-American
Bowling Green Falcons Mid-American
Cincinnati Bearcats The American
Cleveland State Vikings Horizon
Dayton Flyers Atlantic 10
Kent State Golden Flashes Mid-American
Miami RedHawks Mid-American
Ohio Bobcats Mid-American
Ohio State Buckeyes Big Ten
Toledo Rockets Mid-American
Wright State Raiders Horizon
Xavier Musketeers Big East
Youngstown State Penguins Horizon