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Saturday, April 13, 2024

Super Bowl LVIII takes in 14 million bets for a total of $307 million

Sports betting records shattered as viewers place billions on the title

 

By MI’ZAUNI REESE — sports@theaggie.org

 

With the rise of team loyalty and affiliation, sports events have grown increasingly popular. Some fans take their devotion to a sport or team even higher by engaging in sports betting, putting their own livelihoods on the line. Thus, the recent growth in viewers and attendees of games coincides with A recent increase in sports betting worldwide.

 With celebrities such as Drake and Offset betting well over $1 million in Super Bowl LVIII, this is just one of the most recent examples of high bidding trends we see nationwide. Through the estimated 70 million individuals who took part in Super Bowl betting, over $23 billion was wagered on the Super Bowl, about 35% higher than last year, according to the American Gaming Association. In spite of economic downturn and inflation, this spike in gambling may point to a bigger trend as it has even been taken up by teenagers and tweens due to weak age security policies.

Although the United States’ economy is starting to level out again since the COVID-19 pandemic, it is still in better shape than what was predicted by forecasters. Still, with funds going to foreign conflicts and individuals struggling with jobs, people are doing what they can to pinch pennies. Sports betting and gambling around the world have proven to add hardship to these individuals who would otherwise save their money —- all for the potential to win more money

 Within the past decade, gambling has become more accessible than ever. Lotteries, casinos and horse races are now a thing of the past as gambling apps have come to fruition. In 2018, the Supreme Court lifted the ban on sports betting that caused the market to skyrocket as loyal fans were willing to put their money where their mouth is for the sake of their team’s reputation. 

However, sports betting has in some cases gone from a niche hobby to a common “side hustle” for many college-aged individuals. With a simple wager, often under $20, fans have the chance to increase their winnings by more than tenfold. The reason for this exponential growth in gains is the increased complexity of these bets.

What originated as a simple “my team will beat your team” mentality has evolved into complex, multifaceted bets that decrease the odds of winning, but make for a greater payout. Known as parlays, these multi-wager bets range from a team winning by a specific number of points, the sum of both teams’ scores equating to higher than a specific number or individual players performing to a certain level such as throwing a minimum number of yards. 

The intricacy of parlay bets allows for true artistry to show. A gambler must have extensive knowledge of not only the team, but individual players, average performance, the skill level of the opposing team and much more. It is no longer a matter of “my team is better”; now, the gambler is betting on their own personal expertise of the league and its players. 

Additionally, there are now bets on sporting events that have nothing to do with the actual game. Many college-aged individuals made bets amongst friends during Super Bowl LVIII on things such as: “I bet you Taylor Swift will be on camera eight times during the Super Bowl.” 

Sports betting has become so popular that many individuals who have no prior experience in betting or limited knowledge of the sport are participating. For Super Bowl LVIII, there was a $460,000 bet nationwide on Travis Kelce, with a current average of 0.47 on receiving touchdowns per game played in his career, which is a shocking statistic for the amount of money betted on him. This large bet can be due in part to his recent fan attention for dating singer Taylor Swift. 

As well as newcomers, sports betting has even reached people who don’t consider themselves to be sports fans. Rapper Rubi Rose won $1 million betting on Super Bowl LVIII, saying “have faith,” and then proceeding to shout out her sports betting app of choice. Memes flooded social media platforms with jokes about parlays and the Super Bowl, such as, “She not getting a Valentine’s day gift if this Super Bowl Parlay don’t hit”. 

Sports betting is starting to become the new norm in many people’s lives with its ever-changing rules and the addition of new ways to play. Everyone seems to be getting in on the action, but who’s to say this is a necessarily positive trend when any form of gambling is involved? Nonetheless, sports betting is on the rise, and we are certain to see more of this in future games.

 

Written by: Mi’Zauni Reese — sports@theaggie.org

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