This percentage also reflects those who have already placed legal sports bets during the first year of sportsbooks operating in the state.
This number represents more than 1 million Marylanders. Meanwhile, the remaining 76 percent who joined the poll said they were unlikely or very unlikely to place bets on sports.
The poll was conducted this year from April 18 through 23, with a margin of error of around 3.5 percentage points.
Prior to the legalization of sports betting in the state, BetMaryland.com conducted a pre-launch poll that accurately projected the market for sports gambling in Maryland. About 23 percent of Marylanders, representing over 1 million people, indicated an interest in sports betting.
What the Poll Reveals
Out of the 23 percent of respondents who are likely to engage in sports gambling, men are more likely to participate compared to women, with 25 percent of men and 20 percent of women.
The poll also shows that individuals who participate in sports betting tend to be younger, with about 37 percent of respondents aged 18–34 expressing interest in sports betting and tend to be more educated and wealthier compared to the general population. On the other hand, only 23 percent of people aged 35-55 and 12 percent of those 55 and above showed an interest in sports betting.
Black residents participate in sports betting (college and professional sports) at a higher rate of 32 percent than other racial groups. Meanwhile, only 18 percent of white Marylanders gamble on sports.
The poll also studied the respondents’ loyalties towards the two Major League Baseball teams in the area. Almost half (44 percent) were fans of the Baltimore Orioles, while 14 percent supported the Washington Nationals. Around 4 percent of the respondents claimed to have a dual allegiance to both teams, while 24 percent said they were not fans of any Major League Baseball teams.
Sports Betting in Maryland Has Generated $2 Billion in Bets So Far
The survey also asked respondents about Maryland Question 2. The measure, which asked voters whether they supported the “expansion of commercial gaming” or bringing in more casinos to the state, passed through a ballot referendum in the 2020 general election.
Despite the general public’s approval, it took the state some time to establish the sports betting industry. In 2021, the first set of physical sports betting establishments, comprising five casinos, a bingo hall, and two off-track betting locations, began accepting wagers.
Within eight days of the November 22, 2022 soft-launch, the first seven mobile betting apps in Maryland went live and wagered over $186 million on sports. Today, the state has ten legal in-person sports gambling spots and nine mobile apps.
Sports gambling operations in Maryland have generated almost $2 billion in bets and $1.7 billion in payouts over the past nine months. $13.9 million was paid in taxes to the state, most of which went to funds to improve public schools.
Maryland’s sports betting industry broke records in March, with $386 million in bets placed at the state’s 10 retail and eight mobile sportsbooks, WTOP News reported.