RIVERSIDE, Iowa (KWWL) - The Iowa Hawkeyes and Iowa State Cyclones will both play in bowl games this winter and local casinos have a chance to cash in on them for the first time.
"There's a lot of Hawkeye fans that are Hawkeye fans through and through. They're going to bet no matter who they play," Riverside Casino General Manager Dan Franz said. "But the bigger bowl Iowa is in, I think the more bets we'll see."
"We're hoping Orange Bowl, that might be a little optimistic," Wiebe Goodyk said, an Iowa grad who made his first legal Iowa bet on the Hawkeyes Men's Basketball team Friday (which unfortunately for him didn't pan out as the Hawkeyes lost to No. 4 Michigan 103-91).
Inaugural sports bets were placed around the state on August 15 and the college football season started just nine days later. Franz says they had to hit the ground running.
"We were into the heavy part of the sports betting season. It's amazing how fast it's gone," Franz said.
Franz said Riverside saw roughly 5 million dollars in bets last month through Elite Sportsbook. The state taxes their revenue after payouts to a tune of 6.75%, tied with Nevada for the lowest mark in the country.
Eighty percent of Riverside's sports wagers are done online through the sportsbook. Franz thinks they'll oversee around $1,000,000 worth of bets from this bowl season alone.
It's estimated the state legislature will see somewhere between 2 and 4 million dollars each year from sports betting.