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Ditka Helps Indiana Officially Launch Sports Betting

mike dikita sports betting

Legal sports betting began in Indiana on September 1, at the Ameristar Casino in East Chicago, just in time for the NFL regular season to begin. There are other venues who are following suit. And the race is most certainly on for customers.

How Does Mike Ditka Help Indiana Officially Launch Sports Betting?

We say that because neighboring Illinois has been a little slow to the table, not with its approval of sports betting, but rather its establishment of a set of rules and regulations by which the activity will be conducted. And it might be a few months before they are able to get that done. As such, they are going to fall behind, as locations such as the Ameristar, the Horseshoe Casino in Hammond and the Blue Chip Casino in Michigan City, are just a stone’s throw away from the major population center of Chicago.

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And they are trotting out the local legends. Mike Ditka, the Hall of Fame player for the Bears who was also the head coach the last time Chicago won the Super Bowl, and Devin Hester, who returned a kickoff for a touchdown the last time the Bears appeared in the Super Bowl, were special guests at the grand opening of the Ameristar-East Chicago sportsbook, which at the moment consists of five sports betting windows and a number of free-standing wagering kiosks.

Most of the customers who were interviewed by reporters expressed that they enjoyed the convenience factor; that Las Vegas may be a difficult place to get to, but if they can drive just a short distance to find a location where they can out down a casual wager and sit and watch the game, that was a real attraction.

Betting On Mobile Devices

There is yet another leap beyond this, of course. It will be only a matter of time until these same Indiana gaming establishments have the ability to enable their patrons to place their bets on a mobile device, thus increasing the level of convenience, and when that happens, there is the potential for a genuine explosion in popularity. The process the casinos will go through is to affect a partnership with companies who specialize in online betting.

The governor even got in on the act.

Republican Eric Holcomb, who signed the sports betting bill into law a little more than three months ago, was politically correct as he strode up to the window at the Indiana Grand Casino in Shelbyville and placed $10 wagers on the Indianapolis Colts (to win the Super Bowl), Indiana Pacers (to win the NBA title) and Indiana Fever (to win that night’s WNBA game), with a pledge to donate any winnings to the Indiana Canine Action Network.

Indiana is now the 13th state that has approved sports betting – the result of last year’s Supreme Court ruling to strike down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA), which had prohibited sports wagering in states that had not already “grandfathered” it in.

And those gaming establishments in Northwest Indiana now have the ability to leverage those offerings they now have at their disposal against casinos in Illinois that will be looking for their piece of the action.

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Casinos In Chicago May Damage Indiana But Suffer From Saturation

casino in chicago

Could a casino in Chicago succeed? And if so, to what extent? That is what has been explored in a feasibility study in advance of plans actually going into effect.

Union Gaming Analytics came back with mixed results. Their conclusion was that any casino that existed within the Windy City was going to be inundated with taxes, to the extent that it could not be wildly profitable.

Can A Casino In Chicago Succeed?

At the same time, however, there was practically no way to avoid becoming the dominant facility in the market.

Over the long haul, that is going to affect the Indiana casinos that are located in Northwest, which borders Chicago. These are cities such as Hammond, Gary, Michigan City, and East Chicago, all of which currently draw from the Chicago area. It was projected that about $260 million in gross revenues would, in effect, be transferred from those Indiana areas to Chicago.

And it doesn’t necessarily stop there. Illinois Senate Bill 690 is also going to authorize both a casino and a “racino” (a horse track with slot games) in the south suburbs of Chicago, in addition to slots at other tracks like Arlington and Hawthorne.

Concerns About Saturation

So one can imagine the concern on the part of the Indiana operators. But there is a “saturation” factor as well, in that all of the gaming options that would be found in Chicago and its surrounding areas would perhaps make all of them weaker, since they would all be competing for the same customers and the same dollars.

And the placement of the casino in the city itself is going to be very important. The feasibility study points out that all of the sites that have been suggested by Chicago mayor Lori Lightfoot would not optimize the effectiveness of the casino, simply because they are not convenient for enough gamblers to get to.

There are other factors that have to be taken into consideration. One of them is that customers who visit a casino in the city of Chicago itself would probably want to have some access to downtown. There are is also the very real concern of the casino being in an area that is unsafe. And let’s face it; Chicago’s violent crime rate is alarming to many people.

A Chicago Casino Can Realize Appreciable Revenue?

The study offers the opinion that a Chicago casino could realize appreciable revenues if it is located in an area where, in their words, “that is less penetrated with existing and future casino venues than the areas to the south of Chicago.”

Mayor Lightfoot has shown interest in fielding public input as to the best sites to place a casino in the city. Her office issued an eleven-question survey toward that end, which is designed to be answered by Chicago residents but does not have any built-in safeguards to prevent, say, residents from Northwest Indiana from giving a Chicago zip code and offering feedback.

Still, the mayor wants such a process to be transparent to, as she put it, assure the public that “all voices can be heard as the city moves forward on this historic project.”

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Indiana and Iowa Want Sports Betting Ready For Football

sports betting pro and college football

Indiana isn’t fooling around when it comes to giving sports bettors a lot of choices. The state’s gaming commission has released the list of games that will be available for wagering, and there is hardly anything that is being left out. Aside from the so-called major sports such as pro and college football, pro and college basketball and Major League Baseball, there will be all forms of auto racing, such as NASCAR, Formula One and IndyCar (naturally), plus extensive coverage of pro golf, including all PGA and LPGA Tour events, as well as the European tour.

Will Indiana and Iowa Get Sports Betting Ready For The NFL Football Season?

Multiple soccer leagues will be listed, and this includes the major European leagues, the English Premier League and the U.S.-based Major League Soccer. They’ll have tennis events, on both the men’s and women’s side, not to mention boxing and the UFC. And there’s more.

There are currently thirteen locations that have been cleared to have a sports betting facility on their premises. This includes ten licensed casinos and three off-track betting sites – the Winner’s Circle locations in Indianapolis, Clarksville and New Haven. These were all licensed within the last couple of weeks. The Rising Star Casino in Rising Sun and the Majestic Star Casino in Gary have not yet applied for sports betting licenses.

There is a tight schedule for all of this, as ideally, the locations can all be up and running by September 1, in time for the NFL season and much of the college season to begin. They have the events laid out, and the locations and all they have to come up with are the rules, which they hope will be adopted on August 28.

Yes, that’s a very tight schedule indeed.

In Iowa, which is another part of “Big Ten Country,” casinos are also making plans in a hurry, as they are making deals with third-party vendors who have the expertise in the area. And while a specific target date for opening up the new sportsbooks has not been established, they hope to be operational by August 31, which is when the state’s two Division I (FBS) football teams begin action, with the University of Iowa playing against Miami of Ohio and Iowa State taking on Northern Iowa.

The NFL begins just five days after that with the Chicago Bears hosting the Green Bay Packers, and as luck would have it, those are the two teams that probably have the largest fan bases in the Hawkeye State.

Wes Ehrecke, the CEO of the Iowa Gaming Association, believes that most of the casinos should be just about ready to offer the sports betting product at around that time.

Again, as it is with Indiana, a number of rules must be established to govern sports betting, and those will hopefully be decided upon by the end of July. Many states have rushed into legalizing the sportsbooks in the wake of the Supreme Court overturning the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, and as one can imagine, this has created a mad scramble, as legislators have hastened the process of legalization so as not to lose business to neighboring states.

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A $50 Million Indiana Casino Fee has Caesars Rethinking its Expansion Plans

A $50 Million Indiana Casino Fee has Caesars Rethinking its Expansion Plans

The Las Vegas Sun recently posted an Associated Press report that Caesars Entertainment could pull out of its plans to build a new Indiana casino if it is forced to pay a $50 million casino license fee for two horse track and casinos it recently acquired near Indianapolis, Indiana.

Why Is A Indiana Casino Charging Caesars Entertainment 50 Million Dollars?

Back in November of last year, the Las Vegas casino entertainment giant announced that it had reached an agreement to buy Hoosier Park in Anderson and Indiana Grand outside of Shelbyville for $1.7 billion. As part of this deal, the state fee for transferring those casino licenses at $50 million. Through the Indianapolis Business Journal, it said that Caesars had made the argument that the state fee should not apply in this case.

The Horseshoe Southern Indiana Casino Near Louisville, Kentucky

As a response to the state’s current position on the matter, it was also reported that Caesars had told the Indiana Gaming Commission that it could pull the plug on an on-land casino expansion project in the southern part of the state. The company already operated a riverboat casino at its Horseshoe Southern Indiana casino near Louisville, Kentucky. The expansion plans called for a replacement of this property with a new land-based $90 million Indiana casino in that part of the state.

Indiana Gaming Commission

The Indiana Gaming Commission has tabled the discussion on this matter until May at the earliest or possibly as late as June. At that time, the commission is set to discuss the particulars surrounding the Caesars-Centaur agreement to buy those two horse track casino properties. According to Wikipedia, Caesars Entertainment is based in Paradise, Nevada. It currently owns and operates over 50 real money casinos and hotels and seven additional golf course properties under several different brand names.

Las Vegas, Atlantic City, Lake Tahoe, Mississippi and New Orleans

From its actual website Caesars.com, some of the biggest destinations for its real-money gambling casinos include Las Vegas, Atlantic City, Lake Tahoe, Mississippi and New Orleans. Its main base of operations is in Las Vegas with several the most popular casino and hotel properties on the Strip. Paris Las Vegas, The Linq Hotel and Casino, Planet Hollywood, The Cromwell and of course famed Caesar’s Palace are included on this list.

Bally’s And Harrah’s Casinos In Atlantic City New Jersey

The multi-billion dollar casino and entertainment company also own and operates Caesars Atlantic City and Bally’s Atlantic City. Two of the more prominent Harrah’s properties are Harrah’s Lake Tahoe and Harrah’s New Orleans. Its casino property in the Mississippi Delta is Horseshoe Tunica.

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Play, Shop, Gamble, Dine At Any Caesars Entertainment Casino Resorts

One of the most popular aspects of real money gambling at Caesar’s property is one of the more lucrative loyalty rewards programs for casino regulars. You can earn when you play, dine, shop or stay at any Caesars Entertainment resorts and casinos. The loyalty program is known in the real money casino industry as Total Rewards. It offers free casino play, special member pricing, discounts and pre-sale access for select shows. There are other benefits and exclusive member offers, and it is free and easy to join. You can log onto Caesars.com for all the information on this exciting program.

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