Top 10 US Sports Betting States Per Capita

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In 2023, the United States witnessed a significant evolution in the sports betting landscape. Various states showcased diverse levels of engagement and spending. An insightful analysis of the total sports betting “handle” in relation to the estimated population of each state unveils a fascinating narrative on the dollars bet per person, offering a unique lens through which to view the nation’s sports betting enthusiasm. The betting per capita leaderboard reveals a fascinating insight into the state of the industry.

To craft a compelling narrative on the top 10 U.S. states by sports betting spending per capita in 2023, we’ll first need to understand the total amount wagered in sports betting, known as the “handle,” and then analyze this in relation to the population of each state. This approach will reveal not just where the most money is being bet, but how much is being bet relative to the number of people in each state, providing a unique per capita perspective on sports betting.


North Carolina sports betting begins on March 11, with NC sportsbook promo codes available. It will be curious to see if the Tar Heel State enters these rankings in future years.


The states leading the charge in sports betting handles in 2023 were as follows:

  1. New York: $19.2 billion
  2. New Jersey: $11.97 billion
  3. Illinois: $11.62 billion
  4. Nevada: $8.26 billion
  5. Pennsylvania: $7.68 billion
  6. Ohio: $7.67 billion
  7. Arizona: $6.57 billion
  8. Virginia: $5.6 billion
  9. Colorado: $5.56 billion
  10. Massachusetts: $4.97 billion

Analysis Methodology

To determine the sports betting spending per capita, we divide the total sports betting handle by the state’s population. This calculation gives us a figure that represents the average amount of money wagered on sports betting per person in each state.

For the purpose of this analysis, we will use estimated populations based on the most recent data available. As population figures are constantly changing due to factors such as birth rates, death rates, and migration patterns, these estimates will provide a snapshot to work with for our per capita calculations.

Top 10 States by Sports Betting Spending Per Capita

By examining the total sports betting handle in relation to the estimated population of each state, we can uncover intriguing insights into per capita spending on sports betting. This analysis reveals which states are leading the way in terms of betting dollars per resident, offering a unique perspective on the nation’s sports betting habits.

1. Nevada $2,681

The longstanding epicenter of gambling in the United States, unsurprisingly leads the pack with a staggering per capita spending of approximately $2,681. This figure underscores Nevada’s ingrained gambling culture and its global reputation as a premier destination for bettors.

2. New Jersey $1,348

Follows as the second-highest state in per capita sports betting spending, with an impressive figure of around $1,348. The Garden State has been at the forefront of the sports betting expansion in the U.S., quickly establishing a robust market following the legalization of sports betting.

3. New York $987

With its massive handle of $19.2 billion, ranks third in per capita spending at about $987. This highlights the significant appetite for sports betting among New Yorkers, despite the state’s relatively late entry into the legal sports betting market. Long playoff runs by the Knicks and/or Rangers could see them break the $1000 mark.

4. Colorado $965

Colorado being fourth makes sense for state known for its progressive approach to sports and recreational activities. A per capita betting expenditure of approximately $965 sees it just behind New York. This suggests a strong engagement with sports betting among Coloradans, reflective of the state’s vibrant sports culture. That said, this number was aided by a Nuggets title run in 2023.

5. Illinois $917

Comes in fifth with a per capita spending of around $917. The state’s enthusiastic adoption of sports betting is mirrored in its substantial total handle, indicating a healthy appetite for wagering among its residents.

6. Arizona $902

A newer entrant to the legal sports betting arena, impressively ranks sixth, with residents spending about $902 per capita. This underscores the rapid growth and acceptance of sports betting within the state.

7. Massachusetts $721

With a per capita expenditure of approximately $721, ranks seventh. The state’s engagement level showcases the growing interest in sports wagering among its residents. That said, this number does have room to improve. The Bruins and Celtics are both reasonable bets to go deep in the playoffs. If they do, this could increase.

8. Ohio $656

Another state with a rich sports heritage, finds itself in the eighth position with a per capita spending of around $656. This positions Ohio as a significant player in the Midwest’s sports betting landscape.

9. Virginia $649

With a per capita spending of roughly $649, ranks ninth. The state’s sports betting market has shown considerable growth, reflecting a keen interest among Virginians.

10. Pennsylvania $600

Rounding out the top ten with a per capita spending of $600. As one of the early adopters of legal sports betting, Pennsylvania’s market maturity is reflected.

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