March Madness

  • The American Gaming Association (AGA) estimates 45 million Americans will wager over $3.1 billion on the NCAA Men’s and Women’s college basketball tournament, better known as March Madness.
  • This is a lower projected number of bettors compared to 2021, but more money is expected to be wagered at an average of $68.88 per person.

WASHINGTON – March Madness is upon us and the American Gaming Association (AGA) is projecting more than $3.1 billion will be wagered in 2022.

This projection comes from the estimated 45 million Americans who are expected to bet on March Madness this year. Interestingly, this is fewer than the projected 47 million Americans in 2021.

The $3.1 billion in wagers is expected to be the largest regulated handle in history. In 2019, an estimated $8.5 billion was wagered on March Madness from 47 million Americans. Only 4.1 million Americans wagered at a regulated book, however.

AGA Projections

The AGA’s research revealed that American bettors will be wagering differently this time around.

While 55% of bets came from wagers outside of bracket contests in 2021, 2022 is projected to see 76% of non-bracket wagers.

20.9 million bettors are estimated to simply bet on a game or futures betting on who will win the tournament altogether.

The Arizona, Connecticut, Louisiana, Maryland, North Dakota, South Dakota, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming markets have all launched since last year’s tournament. There are now 29 million more Americans with access to regulated sportsbooks.

With the multitude of options for regulated betting available, the public’s form of betting has clearly been affected. Sportsbooks promote single-game wagers and parlays and the new subset of bettors are more inclined to wager this way.

In the past, the bracket contest wagers were the titular way that players bet on March Madness. 36.5 million are still projected to partake in bracket challenges. Many of these bettors are also likely to wager on straight bets as well.

“There’s nothing more thrilling in sports than the magic of March Madness,” said Bill Miller, AGA President and CEO. “If you’re getting in on the action, have your game plan to bet responsibly. That means setting a budget, keeping it fun, learning the odds and playing legally.”

Where The Money Is Going

The Gonzaga Bulldogs are pulling in the bulk of the wagers, seeing 17% of total futures bets. The Duke Blue Devils rake in 12% and the Kentucky Wildcats round off the top three with 11%.

Legal sports betting sites are already seeing the influx of bets for this March Madness as many will be wagering for the first time.

The overall market has bloomed and this will likely be the see the most Americans betting on March Madness.

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