Colorado’s sports betting is a thriving ecosystem with new entrants emerging all the time. There are ten live online sportsbooks in Colorado at the time of this writing. However, more are coming. There are over a dozen sportsbook licenses up for grabs. The Division of Gaming still has room to grow Colorado’s sportsbook industry. That’s all despite major sports leagues struggling to return to play.
Most of Colorado’s sportsbooks are either standalone companies or the result of casino partnerships. DraftKings, FanDuel, and William Hill are companies whose core businesses are sportsbooks. However, Colorado’s casinos may want in on the sports betting industry, too. They’ve either partnered with sportsbook companies or developed their own. BetMonarch is one such sportsbook app that’s wholly owned and developed by Monarch Casino.
The online sports betting market is thriving. That may be because it’s the safest betting option in the social distancing age. However, Colorado’s online sportsbooks are competitive choices for bettors’ funds. Here’s everything bettors need to know about them.
Colorado Online Sports Betting List
|Colorado Online Sportsbook||Deposit Bonus||Launch Date||Visit Site|
|BetRivers||100% up to $250||May 1||Visit BetRivers|
|DraftKings Sportsbook||$500 Risk-Free Bet + 20% up to $500||May 1||Visit Draftkings Sportsbook|
|BetMGM||$500 Risk-Free Bet||May 1||Visit BetMGM Sportsbook|
|FanDuel Sportsbook||$500 Risk-Free Bet||May 1||Visit FanDuel Sportsbook|
|FoxBet||$500 Risk-Free Bet; $10 Bonus Bet for Broncos betting||May 19|
|SBK Sportsbook||$20 Risk-Free Bet||June 4|
|Sky Ute Sportsbook||-||June 9|
|Circa Sports||-||July 1|
Most sports leagues’ seasons have been postponed or canceled, and Colorado is gradually reopening after the transition to the safer-at-home order. But even the lack of professional sports and the pandemic couldn’t deter Colorado from opening its first legal sportsbooks on May 1.
The launch of online sports betting in Colorado required the development and execution of numerous regulations and associated systems, a task that became more complex as officials grappled with the fallout from coronavirus. Even with sportsbooks now open, customers will likely find a thin slate of wagers due to the lack of global sporting events. Here are the casinos and sportsbooks who’ve secured partnerships in Colorado so far.
Circa Sports, a Las Vegas-based sports wagering operator, was the first partnership agreement struck by Century Casinos.
Century Casinos, which operates two eponymous casinos in Colorado, also announced a second partnership with bet365 in mid-May.
Australian-owned PointsBet will be the mobile gaming partner of choice for Double Eagle Casino. PointsBet was one of the first sports wagering companies to announce its intentions to operate in Colorado and was awarded an online license March 19.
Colorado is one of six states PointsBet is expecting to operate in by the end of 2020.
Eldorado Resorts, which recently acquired gaming giant Caesars Entertainment, owns two land-based casinos in Colorado (Isle Casino and Lady Luck Casino Black Hawk).
The gaming mega-power owns two master licenses and has partnerships in place with Fox Bet (owned by the Stars Group) and William Hill.
Full House Resorts
Full House also operates mobile sports betting, and the company utilizes a trio of partnerships in that endeavor. BetAmerica has the rights to operate a potential retail sportsbook at Broncos Billy’s.
WSI (a subsidiary of Wynn Resorts) and Smarkets will presumably be operating mobile betting platforms for Full House.
Jacobs Entertainment also struck an agreement in mid-April to bring SuperBook to Colorado under its master license, marking the first time SuperBook is available outside of Las Vegas.
J.P. McGill’s Hotel & Casino
J.P McGill’s is partnered with BetRivers. BetRivers is owned by Rush Street Interactive makes iGaming platforms for all sorts of clients. Its sportsbook is just one part of a large and varied portfolio. However, it still doesn’t have an iOS app–its app just redirects users to the mobile website. It’s only true app remains on the Android Marketplace.
Midnight Rose Hotel & Casino
Midnight rose partnered with BetMGM to bring sports betting to its customers. That brought the MGM Grand’s sportsbook–in partnership with Roar Digital–to the Rocky Mountain State.
Penn National, which operates the Ameristar Casino Black Hawk, is approved for a master license. The company brought its Barstool Sports sportsbook brand to the online sports betting market and retail sportsbook at Ameristar.
Betfred, a major player in the United Kingdom sports betting market, expanded into the US in 2020, with the first Betfred USA sportsbook opening at Iowa’s Grand Falls Casino in January.
Colorado’s Saratoga Casino is partnering with Betfred USA for its sports betting platform. Betfred operates more than 1,500 locations in the UK.
Triple Crown Casinos
The master licenses allow each property to operate both land-based and online sports betting platforms. As of now, no partners for the online side have been announced yet.
Twin River Worldwide Holdings
Two of the biggest names in mobile sports betting will come to Colorado via Twin River Worldwide Holdings, which has been awarded three master licenses from the CLGCC.
Twin River (operating as Premier Entertainment Black Hawk in Colorado), has announced partnerships with both FanDuel SportsBook and DraftKings SportsBook, the two companies leading the market so far in open mobile sports betting markets in the U.S.
Three Colorado land-based casinos (Golden Gates, Golden Gulch and Mardi Gras) were purchased by Twin River in January, with the intent of using those properties in partnership with FanDuel and DraftKings to bring sports betting to Colorado.
Wildwood Casino partnered with ISI Race & Sports to develop its own branded sportsbook, Bet Wildwood. It’s still in its early stages, and it released to poor reviews. It still has work to do before it’s a serious competitive choice.
Online Sports Betting Partnerships
|Online Sportsbook||Launch Date||Casino Partner||Colorado Casino Owner|
|DraftKings Sportsbook||May 1||Golden Gates||Twin River Worldwide Holdings|
|FanDuel Sportsbook||May 1||Golden Gulch||Twin River Worldwide Holdings|
|BetMGM||May 1||Midnight Rose||Triple Crown Casino|
|BetRivers||May 1||Midnight Rose||Triple Crown Casino|
|BetMonarch||May 9||Monarch Casino||Monarch Casino Resort, INC|
|SBK Sportsbook||June 4||Full House Resorts||Full House Resorts|
|Sky Ute Sportsbook||June 9||Sky Ute Casino||Sky Ute Casino|
|Circa Sports||July 1||Century Casinos||Century Casinos|
|Fox Bet||N/A||Lady Luck Black Hawk||Eldorado|
|PointsBet||N/A||Double Eagle||Double Eagle|
|BetAmerica||N/A||Bronco Billy's||Full House Resorts|
|BetFred||N/A||Saratoga Casino||Saratoga Casino Holdings|
|Circa||N/A||Century Casino Cripple Creek||Century Casinos|
|Barstool Sports||N/A||Ameristar||Penn National Gaming|
|Twin River||N/A||Golden Mardi Gras||Twin River Worldwide Holdings|
|William Hill||N/A||Isle Black Hawk||Eldorado|
|Wynn||N/A||Bronco Billy's||Full House Resorts|
|SuperBook||N/A||The Lodge||Jacobs Entertainment|
|SportsBetting.com||N/A||Johnny Nolon's||Carousel Group|
|Bet365||Agreement signed May 19, launch pending regulator approval||Century Casino, Cripple Creek||Century Casinos|
|IGT PlaySports||Partnership announced May 19||Wild Card Saloon, Sasquatch Casino||Ed and Shirley's Inc.|
|ISI||N/A||Colorado Grande, Cripple Creek||G Investments LLC.|
|PlayUp||Late 2020||Bull Durham Casino||Global Casinos|
Guide To Betting Online In Colorado
Although Colorado’s sportsbooks are each uniquely branded, there are similarities between each sportsbook. Here are a few things bettors can expect no matter where they wager.
Common Sportsbook Bonuses
When bettors create sportsbook accounts, they’re often offered welcome bonuses. These bonuses incentivize bettors to place wagers and continue placing bets long after the first one is settled. The most common bonuses in Colorado are deposit bonuses and risk-free bets.
Deposit bonuses usually require bettors to deposit funds into their accounts. (There are also deposit bonuses that award site credits upon signup, but they’re usually tiny–less than $50.) Most deposit bonuses will match bettor deposits at a certain rate. For example, Fox Bet has a 50% deposit rate. That means for every $2 bettors deposit, Fox Bet will give a bettor $1 in site credits. That allows bettors to deposit at their own pace and place larger bets with less risk.
However, these deposit bonuses usually max out at $250 to $500. Sportsbooks can’t award site credits indefinitely.
Many sportsbooks also offer risk-free bets. They’re bets that get refunded if bettors lose a bet. FanDuel offers a risk-free bet of up to $500. If a bettor’s first wager is $500 and it loses, then that bettor will get $500 back in site credits. However, the risk-free bet is only good for the first bet. So, a $50 that loses would only get $50 of site credits back. Risk-free bets are popular choices for sportsbooks to offer, but they don’t allow bettors to wager at their own paces like deposit bonuses.
Colorado Teams That Can And Can’t Be Bet On
There are many different sports to bet on, but Coloradans have their favorite teams. The Broncos will have lines available during the NFL season. They’ll have moneylines and point spreads ripe for enthusiastic betting. There are plenty of prop bets and futures that’ll be available on the Broncos, too.
A Colorado list of teams wouldn’t be complete without the other three main sports, though. The Colorado Rockies, Colorado Avalanche, and the Denver Nuggets are huge draws for sports fans across the state. All of them are fair game for sports betting, too.
College teams are fair game for certain types of bets, too. The Colorado Buffaloes are one of Colorado’s most popular teams, whether it’s CU’s football or basketball teams. Bettors will have the standard moneylines, spreads, and futures available as the professional teams offer.
However, Colorado sportsbooks won’t offer prop bets on college games. Colorado’s Division of Gaming prohibits prop bets on college games. It likely arises from a compromise with the NCAA, which is adamantly opposed to sports betting. Bettors shouldn’t be surprised when they don’t find sports betting on college teams.
What Is The Status Of Esports In Colorado?
Colorado not only allows esports betting. It also counts esports among its authorized sports catalog. The Division of Gaming’s rules stipulate that the Division will regulate sports and bets. That way, no one can make up a sport or bet that cons bettors out of their money. Sports matches must have clear, consistent rules to ensure bettors can understand how their wager will play out throughout the game. Bets must have similarly clear rules. Otherwise, sports betting wouldn’t be fair to bettors.
Sportsbooks Coming Soon To Colorado
There are two sportsbooks that are in other states but could come to Colorado next. The first one is Golden Nugget. It’s available in New Jersey, but it doesn’t have a partnership in Colorado yet. The second is Parx. It has an online casino and sportsbook in Pennsylvania, another prominent sports betting state.
However, the full list is anyone’s guess. There will likely be 20 online sportsbooks in Colorado by the time everyone arrives. That gives Colorado’s online sportsbook market to double.
Legal Vs Illegal Sports Betting In Colorado
Sports betting used to be an illegal activity in all but four states. Sports bettors’ only options were illegal sportsbooks and bookies. If there was a bookie or website that bettors created relationships with, it could be hard for some of them to leave. However, legal sports betting sites are superior to illegal sites.
Legal sportsbooks are required to have a cash reserve so it can pay its winning bets out. Think about what happens if an underdog with long odds comes through. A futures bet with +5,000 odds will drain a sportsbook’s cash reserve quickly. Licensed sportsbooks have a formula set by the Colorado Division of Gaming to determine how much cash to have on hand.
In contrast, local bookies may not have that kind of cash on hand. They could be collecting bets informally at the bar with a makeshift business. In that case, there’s nothing stopping them from pocketing bettor money. Even if they’re reliable, they may get stretched too thin and be unable to pay out winnings. If that happens, bettors have no legal recourse because betting with a bookie is illegal in Colorado. They’re stuck without their winnings.
The worst-case scenario is a bookie that works for a crime syndicate. Your bookie may be cool, but his employers may come after bettors who bet on credit and don’t repay their debts. Bettors in good standing may also fund human and drug trafficking unknowingly. Licensed sportsbooks’ transparency ensures bettors don’t fall into these traps.
How Do I Know Online Sportsbooks Are Fair?
Online sportsbooks aren’t all shady offshore websites. However, new bettors may struggle to tell the difference between the two. Here’s how bettors can know they’re betting at a legitimate company.
Who Regulates Legal Online Sportsbooks?
The Colorado Division of Gaming regulates all the sportsbooks in Colorado. It’s a government agency that awards licenses, establishes rules, and enforces industry guidelines. The Division of Gaming also has resources for sports betting operators and customers alike, creating a transparent environment for all industry players.
Before sportsbooks are licensed, the Division of Gaming thoroughly examines each applicant. That includes financial statements, background checks, and a complete record of lawsuits the applicant was involved in. And if a sportsbook doesn’t pay out winnings, the Division of Gaming is a bettor’s next stop. It has processes in place to keep sports betting safe and fair across the board.
Why Should I Trust Online Sportsbooks?
Before they go live, online sportsbooks submit to a security audit. It ensures the sportsbook can protect sensitive bettor information. The sportsbook hires an independent auditor who submits her findings to the Division of Gaming. If the auditor finds areas of improvement, she’ll list them in the report as well.
The Division won’t award a license to a sportsbook that can’t protect its bettors’ information. Since bettors submit their banking information during registration, sportsbooks need top-notch security in place. Bettors can rest assured that by the time they place a wager, their sportsbook of choice is prepared to protect their data.
How Do I Get Paid If I Win?
Sportsbooks make transferring money in and out of the sportsbook account easy. They know no one wants to bet at a sportsbook that makes handling money a hassle. If bettors win, they’ll have cash moved into their sportsbook account. From there, it’s usually as easy as hitting ‘withdraw’ and moving money to their bank or PayPal account. There are other options too, but no one’s using 7-Eleven’s cash withdrawal option during a pandemic.
In short, bettors can get paid from the app. They just have to win, which is win. Best of luck to all the aspiring bettors out there!
Online Sports Betting FAQs
Online sports betting is new to Colorado, so bettors may have a few clouds of doubt about the industry. Here are some common questions we can clear up at the end.
Moneylines, spreads, prop bets, and futures are legal on professional teams. However, Colorado bettors cannot place prop bets on college games. All bets are prohibited on high school games. (No one seriously thought DraftKings would have lines on their daughter’s softball game, did they?)
Yes. Because the Buffs are a PAC-12 team, college sports is a big draw in Colorado. And that’s before factoring in all their popular opponents. Everything besides prop bets is fair game on college sports.
Yes. Several sportsbooks have esports sections in their apps. If the pandemic shuts down major sports again, bettors may end up relying on the esports section to get their betting fixes. Counter Strike, anyone?
Licensed Casinos and established sportsbook companies. Unless aspiring entrepreneurs have all the pieces of their business in place, they can’t complete the license. It wouldn’t be impossible for someone to start a sportsbook in Colorado. However, it would require a massive cash infusion upfront. The sports betting market is largely inaccessible to companies without a track record.
Yes. It was one of the first sportsbooks to do so.
Yes. It was also one of the first sportsbooks to do so.