About 23% of Marylanders plan to bet on sports, according to a poll in a partnership between The Baltimore Banner and Goucher College. That figure would represent about 1 million citizens of legal betting age in the state.
Maryland online sportsbooks launched in November of 2022. So far, through April of 2023, more than $2 billion in wagers have been placed legally in Maryland since the launch, and more than $13 million has been paid in taxes.
In April, two sports betting operators, FanDuel and DraftKings, accounted for 80% of the total handle in Maryland, at $251 million. That month, the most recent with data, sportsbooks paid $3.7 million to the state in taxes from sports betting revenue.
Maryland above national average for people planning to place bets
The poll, which surveyed 800 people living in Maryland, reveals that 76% say they are “unlikely or very unlikely” to place a bet on sports, with 57% saying they are very unlikely to do so.
The poll was conducted between April 18-23, and has a margin of error of 3.5 percentage points, according to The Baltimore Banner.
Earlier in 2023, the American Gaming Association published a report which indicates 16% of American adults have placed a legal bet on sports since the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark decision in 2018 that cleared the way for states to legalize the activity. Maryland’s percentage is higher, most likely because the state has legal betting in place. There are now 34 jurisdictions in the U.S. with legal sports betting, including 33 states and the District of Columbia.
The Goucher College and Baltimore Banner poll shows that men are more likely to say they will bet on sports in Maryland (25% of respondents compared to 20% for women).
Online betting isn’t the only way Marylanders can wager on sports. Maryland has nine mobile sportsbooks and 10 retail locations statewide.
Younger poll respondents more likely to bet in Maryland
More data from the poll shows how prevalent sports betting is with a younger demographic:
- 37% of the 18-34 age group indicates they are “likely” to wager on sports
- Among ages 35-55 in Maryland, 23% say they are “likely” to bet
- 12% of the 55+ age demo in Maryland plan to place a bet on sports
Eighteen percent of respondents who identified as white indicate they are likely to place a bet with a sportsbook, while 32% of black respondents said they would. Those Marylanders who identified as another race were at 27%.
Reporting by The Baltimore Banner points out that those figures, for age and race, reflect the trends nationally. People who say they are likely to place legal bets “tend to be younger, more educated, wealthier and more diverse than the population as a whole.”
Taxes received from sports betting activity in Maryland largely fund public schools, as well as a responsible gaming project.