According to an estimate by The American Gaming Association, Americans are expected to bet $10 billion on the 2018 NCAA Tournament.
However, while the number is impressive, a lot of the betting will be done illegally.
The American Gaming Association projects “only about $300 million – or three percent – will be wagered legally through Nevada sports books.”
The illegal betting numbers rise because of the country’s sports betting laws.
“Our current sports betting laws are so out of touch with reality that we’re turning tens of millions of Americans into criminals for the simple act of enjoying college basketball,” said Geoff Freeman, president and CEO of the American Gaming Association. “The failed federal ban on sports betting has created an illegal, unregulated sports betting market that offers zero consumer protections and generates zero revenue for state and tribal governments.
“As the Supreme Court considers the constitutionality of PASPA, AGA is focused on working with all stakeholders to put the illegal market out of business and enable a safe, legal way for American consumers to participate in next year’s office pool without fear of prosecution.”
The NCAA Tournament officially tips off Tuesday night with the First Four matchups, which continue on Wednesday.