Kansas Sports Betting is Officially a Top-10 Market in the United States

Dan Favale
By , Updated on: Nov 10, 2023 12:00 AM
The Kansas sports betting market is now one of the biggest in the USA.

A little more than one year into their legalized gambling era, the Kansas sports betting market is already one of the 10 biggest in the United States.

This feat was officially cemented on Thursday, November 9. And the news comes on the heels of another record-breaking month for The Sunflower State’s sports gambling handle. 

As we covered in this space, the Kansas sports betting handle hit an all-time monthly high in September 2023. Well, they wound up breaking that mark in October 2023.

What’s more, experts don’t think the state is done. We could see the Kansas sports betting handle continue to climb in November 2023

How has a relatively new sports gambling state surged so far up the industry rankings in such a short amount of time? Why does sports betting in Kansas continue to set revenue and handle records seemingly every other month or so? When should we expect this ascent to level off? And what changes could we see inside and outside the Kansas sports betting market as a result? 

Let’s break it all down.

Data Shows Kansas Sports Betting Handle has Already Eclipsed $1 Billion

News of the Kansas sports betting market’s success came from NoDepositRewards. It has since been determined that Kansas sports betting has generated around $1.3 billion in total wagers since launching back in 2022. Here’s Mackenzie Koch from FOX 4 in Kansas with more details:

Research from NoDepositRewards determined Kansas is the eighth largest state for sports betting. The outlet analyzed statewide sports gambling figures up to July 2023 to determine how much has been wagered per capita in every state. The American Gaming Association says sports betting is legal in 37 states and Washington, D.C.[NoDepositRewards] reports Kansas has seen over $1.3 billion in wagers since sports betting started in 2022, making it equal to $601.53 per adult. According to the Kansas Lottery, the state saw almost $6 million in revenue from all those wagers in the first year.”

The report wound up ranking each state’s sports betting handle by the money spent per capita (i.e. per person). The seven states in front of Kansas’ 2023 sports betting handle are as follows: New Jersey ($1,069.30 per capita), New York ($828.90 per capita), Colorado ($685 per capita), Illinois ($678.53 per capita), Arizona ($677.27 per capita), Iowa ($643.27 per capita) and Maryland ($627.55 per capita). As Koch noted, the data does not include figures from sports betting in Nevada, as they don’t report their wagering per capita.

Technically speaking, Kansas’ sports betting handle for 2023 could still shoot up this list. The calendar year has not yet ended, and betting on the NFL will crescendo in the state as the Kansas City Chiefs prepare for the playoffs. (The Chiefs are based in Missouri, but they are the premier team in neighboring Kansas.)

Kansas Sets Another Sports Gambling Record in October 2023

In addition to this yearly study conducted by NoDepositRewards, the Kansas Lottery recently released the state’s October 2023 sports betting handle. And as it turns out, The Sunflower State broke the record it set the previous month.

For October 2023, Kansas took in $249.7 million in total wagers. That’s up from a recording-breaking $219.3 million in September. 

Officials are optimistic these numbers will continue to climb into 2024. While the MLB World Series is over, betting on the NFL playoffs will soon take precedence. The same goes for betting on the college football playoffs and betting on the NCAAF National Championship. On top of that, both betting on the NBA and betting on the NHL will reach a fever pitch once the football season ends.

The continued shift to online sports betting in Kansas is also impacting projections. Most legal wagers are now processed through online sportsbooks in the United States, making the process more convenient. Kansas is no exception. Around 96.5 percent of their sports betting business in October 2023 came from online wagering—another monthly high.

Why is Kansas Sports Betting So Darn Popular?

Sports betting in the United States generates hundreds of billions of dollars in business every year. It isn’t just Kansas. Gambling on sports is popular everywhere.

Current numbers are also warped due to the time of year. Early fall months are among the busiest on the USA sports betting calendar. It is the only time of year in which the NFL, NCAA football, the NBA, the NHL, MLB and MLS are all in-season. 

To that end, Kansas may need to brace for some pull-back in the coming months. Betting on the college football playoffs and the 2023 NFL playoffs will juice returns through January and, thanks to the Super Bowl, part of February. But there could be a lull thereafter, when betting on basketball and betting on hockey must drive more business.

Important still, the Kansas sports betting handle presently benefits from the absence of sports betting in Missouri. Residents from the neighboring region have flocked across state lines ever since Kansas gave the green light to sports wagering. Immediately, that business may not go anywhere. But Missouri may legalize sports betting in 2024. And if they do, the Kansas sports betting handle will be adversely impacted.

Not that this is a huge concern. Kansas will still turn a lucrative profit off sports betting taxes even if Missouri legalizes gambling. But we could see a hike in tax rates and redoubling of promotional efforts if The Show-Me State starts to infringe upon The Sunflower State’s bottom line. In the meantime, for at least the next couple of months, expect to see the Kansas sports betting market continue to bust its own records.

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Meet the author

Dan Favale

Dan first began writing about sports back in 2011. At the time, his expertise lied in the NBA and NFL. More than one decade, that remains the case. But he's also expanded his catalog to include extensive knowledge and analysis on the NHL, MLB, tennis, NASCAR, college ba...

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