Categories: Sports Betting

West Virginia Becomes 5th U.S. State To Offer Sports Betting After Supreme Court Decision

West Virginia has become the fifth U.S. state to offer sports betting within its borders. It follows Nevada, Delaware, New Jersey and Mississippi, and may not be the last state to authorize sports betting before the end of 2018.

Sportsbooks may also pop up in states like Pennsylvania and Rhode Island by year’s end. Those two states have been busy looking at a change to their sports betting law and implementation of regulations for some time.

But for now, West Virginia is officially in play and the Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races is already taking bets. The official Grand Opening celebration will take place on September 1 and feature former NFL quarterback Joe Theismann.

Hollywood Casino is owned by Penn National and has linked with William Hill to operate sports betting at the property. In exchange for a sports betting license, Penn National will pay West Virginia $100,000 and 10% of the adjusted gross receipts.

The first bets were actually not supposed to come until the Grand Opening, but the West Virginia Lottery Commission decided to open the betting windows a couple days early.

West Virginia was planning for sports betting well before the U.S. Supreme Court decided to end the federal prohibition on sports wagering. The state legislature passed a bill to open up the state to sports betting in March; the U.S. Supreme Court revealed its decision in May.

Now, West Virginia is ready to accept bets in time for the start of the 2018 NFL regular season. It is also taking wagers on this Saturday’s West Virginia at Tennessee college football game, which is the start of the college football season for the Mountaineers.

Darren Heitner @DarrenHeitner

Darren Heitner is the creator of The Sports Biz. He is the owner of the South, Florida-based HEITNER LEGAL, P.L.L.C., which is a law firm that focuses on transactional, intellectual property and litigation work with a heavy emphasis on sports and entertainment issues. He is also the founder of Sports Agent Blog and an author of 2 books published by the American Bar Association -- How to Play the Game: What Every Sports Attorney Needs to Know (1st and 2nd Editions). Heitner contributed to Forbes and Inc. for many years.

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