Colorado Sports Betting Handle Shatters Record In January

Sports bettors in Colorado placed more than half a billion dollars in wagers in January, setting a record, according to data released by the Department of Revenue.

The total handle in the state was reported as $573.7 million for January 2022, easily eclipsing the previous mark of $491.5 million set in October 2021. This makes Colorado just the seventh state to pass $500 million in sports betting handle in a single month.

Despite the record handle, sportsbooks in Colorado paid a high price to earn that action, according to the official report from the state. Gross gaming revenue was $34.6 million, and after promotional credits and deductions were removed that total slipped to $11.7 million. That’s the figure that is taxed, bringing in more than $1.4 million to the State of Colorado in January.

Since launching sports betting in May of 2020, Colorado has received more than $16.1 million in tax revenue from sportsbooks.

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Pro basketball and the NFL led the way in total sports handle in January in Colorado. The two sports combined for more than half of the total handle, with the NBA coming in at 28.5% and the NFL at 25.1% ($166.6 million and $144 million, respectively). This occurred despite the NFL only having a handful of playoff games in the month, and the Denver Broncos not taking part.

College basketball ($63.1 million in total handle), the NHL ($24.6 million), and professional tennis ($19.9 million) were next in popularity based on total dollars placed on wagers in Colorado in January.

Parlay bets remained popular, as more than $90 million of all the money spent on sports bets in the state in January were placed in parlay or combination bet fashion.

Sportsbooks received $567.1 million in sports bets online, showing the popularity and convenience of online betting. Retail sportsbooks tallied $6.6 million in wagers for the month. Gross gaming revenue for retail was just over $437,000, and for online sportsbooks it was $34.2 million.

With the popularity of the Super Bowl, February’s sports betting figures are expected to reveal more big numbers in Colorado. Later this month, March Madness will offer another popular sports betting event that is spread across several weeks.

Photo courtesy of John McCoy/Icon Sportswire

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