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March Madness leads to record wagering for a non-football month in Indiana

Indiana Basketball
The Indiana University men's basketball team made its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2016.

The men’s and women’s NCAA March Madness tournaments helped generate record sports gambling for a non-football month at Indiana sportsbooks.

Bettors wagered $476.8 million in March, according to the latest report from the Indiana Gaming Commission. That led to a $32 million profit for sportsbooks and just over $3 million in state tax revenue.

“Indiana’s sportsbooks beat expectations,” said Jake Garza, managing editor at PlayIndiana, a website that tracks sports betting across the state. “Purdue, Notre Dame and Indiana (University) all played multiple NCAA Tournament games.”

READ MORE: Hoosiers bet billions on sports in 2021

Some of those games were held in Bloomington and Indianapolis, bringing in fans and potential bettors from across the country.

FanDuel was the state’s most popular sportsbook in March. The company has an online betting app and operates physical sportsbooks out of casinos in Michigan City and Florence.

“When you build those places in Indiana, we had March in mind,” said Jeff Hoose, FanDuel’s Midwest regional manager. “And it delivered.”

Hoose says fans in the northern part of the state gravitated to the Indiana schools participating in March Madness, while those closer to the Ohio River favored Kentucky schools.

Indiana sportsbooks have already received $1 billion in wagers this year as the Major League Baseball season and National Basketball Association playoffs begin.

Mitch Legan