Alabama is on the long list of states that have yet to legalize sports betting. This comes as no surprise as Alabama has always had a strict stance on any type of gambling, especially on sports. They have no state lottery, no horse racing tracks, and only one Native American tribe (Poarch Band of Creek) with permission to own and operate casinos within state lines.
That's why your best options for sports betting in Alabama are online sportsbooks like Bovada and BetOnline.
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While the Alabama Criminal Code is pretty clear around gambling for profit, bookmaking, and lotteries, it’s a given that sports betting in Alabama is outlawed and will likely not be legalized anytime soon. There is a single elected official who supports sports betting: Jim Ziegler, who believes that legalizing Alabama sports betting will bring in a great amount of revenue to the state.
What would legal sports betting do for the state of Alabama? This bill would create the Alabama Sports Wagering Commission, tax gross revenue at 10%, make seven licenses available to any pari-mutuel wagering facility, and allow for mobile betting within the state’s borders.
As of April 2020, lawmakers have made four attempts to pass sports betting legislation, but none have made it far enough to vote on. In February 2020, HB301 was introduced and is currently in committee - and with everything going on with COVID-19, we expect the legislation won’t be a priority, especially with no sports to bet on for the foreseeable future.
Most politicians and lawmakers would rather focus on the industrial growth of Alabama than look at legalizing gambling to increase their state’s revenue. Instead, the money that Alabama sports bettors are gambling is going to fund other state’s economies.
The only hope that Alabama residents have for legalized sports betting hinges on the neighboring state of Mississippi. Mississippi has had legalized sports betting for a little over a year now, and Alabama is no doubt keeping a close eye on how that pans out for them before making a decision to finally legalize sports betting in Alabama.
Alabama Sports Betting Timeline
Alabama has not yet been able to pass regulations around sports betting. Bettors in Alabama can use offshore sportsbooks without any problem. These often have been deals than state-based sportsbooks.
Several Bills have Failed to Grab Traction
In every year since 2018, when federal law changed to allow states to legalize sports betting, someone in the Alabama legislature has introduced a bill to do just that. However, none of them have gained much footing.
In 2019, HB 315, and in 2020, HB 336 would have legalized sports betting in the state. They were both structured very similarly and, unsurprisingly, both died in committee.
The 2021 bill was a whole collection, an omnibus. In addition to sports betting, it would have launched an Alabama State Lottery and established casinos. The senate approved it, but the house did not even take it up. Bettors in Alabama will have to wait until things change a bit.
Can I legally bet on sports in Alabama?
There are no legal physical sports betting venues in Alabama, evidently, because of the laws surrounding gambling. Luckily, there are options for Alabama sports bettors in the form of offshore sportsbooks. Bettors can get in on the action from the comfort of their living rooms, opposed to fleeing across state lines to go to a venue in Mississippi to bet on sports.
While a sportsbook cannot be opened in Alabama, online sportsbooks are the most attractive as you can bet from the comfort of your own home without actually breaking any laws. Online sportsbooks like Bovada or MyBookie are great options for US sports bettors, offering secure SSL connections and plenty of betting options.
Bettors have been using online sportsbooks for decades, so new bettors shouldn’t need to be wary of signing up or the security or legitimacy of betting sites. We have a great section of sportsbook reviews that we personally use and recommend. We would never promote a sportsbook that isn’t trustworthy or legitimate.
Betting on Alabama Teams
There’s no question that Alabama residents love their sports. While they don’t host any professional league teams in the NFL, NBA, MLB or NHL, they do have some great collegiate teams that perform quite well in NCAAF football and NCAA Basketball, such as Alabama Crimson Tide, Auburn Tigers, and Alabama State Hornets are all very well-known and appreciated in the state.
With such a passionate fanbase in the state at a collegiate level, it’s not overly surprising that sports betting isn’t legalized yet as many frowns upon betting on NCAA sports. With gambling in general already being rather strict, it may be a few years before Alabama residents can hope to bet on any of their hometown teams.
What to look for in an online sportsbook
For the new Alabama bettors, we want to help guide you to a safe and reputable online sportsbook. We have some great sportsbook reviews that were compiled by our experts that will guide you through all criteria you should look for when selecting an online sportsbook for betting in Alabama.
Sportsbooks that OnlineSportsBetting recommends are thoroughly vetted, safe, and secure. We personally have used these sportsbooks, and we provide honest reviews of each so you can make the right choice based on your sports betting needs.
First and foremost, choosing an online sportsbook that has the odds that you want to bet on should be your main priority. If you are specifically looking for Crimson Tide basketball odds, you should make sure you find the best juice - as not all sportsbooks have the same lines. Comparing sites and making sure you find the best NCAA Basketball odds specific to the team you want to bet on is one of the most important first steps you can take.
There are only a few casinos in Alabama, with offerings of electronic bingo machines and greyhound simulcast wagering.
- Victoryland Casino in Shorter, Macon County, Alabama
- Wind Creek Casino & Hotel in Atmore, Escambia County, Alabama
- Wind Creek Casino & Hotel in Montgomery County, Alabama
- Wind Creek Casino & Hotel in Wetumpka, Elmore County, Alabama
- Greenetrack Bingo & Racing in Eutaw, Union County, Alabama