Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker says that sportsbooks will open in Illinois before March Madness.

  • Sports betting was first legalized in Illinois back June of 2019.
  • J.B. Pritzker claims that sportsbooks should open before March Madness.
  • It is unknown whether or not mobile sportsbooks will open at the same time.

SPRINGFIELD, Ill.Governor J.B. Pritzker said on Wednesday that he expects retail sportsbooks to open in Illinois before March Madness.

It has been some time since sports betting was formally legalized in Illinois. Illinois sports betting officially became legal back in June 28, 2019.

Almost a year later, Gov. Pritzker said “[Sports betting] appears to be on track and will be up and running in time for March Madness.”

Previously, Gov. Pritzker and regulators wanted to have sportsbooks operational before the Super Bowl started. The Super Bowl is the most wagered on game in the United States and it would have given the state much needed tax revenue. Sports betting will be taxed at a 25% rate, and the allocated funds will go towards construction projects.

The Landscape For Illinois Sports Betting

Currently, it seems that there will be a few sportsbooks ready in Illinois before March Madness begins. The Argosy Casino Alton began advertising back in January that they are preparing to launch their sportsbook.

They were one of the casinos in Illinois that was awarded a temporary sports betting license. Once regulations receive their final draft, the Argosy Casino Alton is expected to open their sportsbook.

Chicago’s Rivers Casino Des Plaines is also preparing to open their sportsbook as well. They have begun to hire staff to operate their sportsbook once it opens.

Although a total of three retail sportsbooks are preparing to open, it is unclear when online sports betting will arrive in time in Illinois. If mobile sports betting does not launch at the same time, the range for Illinois sports betting will be very limited.

Either way, three sportsbooks in Illinois are preparing to launch before March Madness. Illinois sports betting does not have too many limits but there is one to be aware of. Bettors in the state cannot wager on Illinois college games. So, if Illinois makes it to the March Madness tournament, no one in the state can make wagers on their games. March Madness begins on March 17.

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