Sports betting firms are currently in the grip of an unprecedented three weeks where two sporting extravaganzas on either side of the Atlantic could dictate the rest of the year. Europe’s “big one” got underway on Tuesday down at Cheltenham and tonight North America gets its turn as March officially gets the Madness tag. It’s thought the Madness moniker came from the betting frenzy that hits Las Vegas sportsbooks and the only word that can summarize it is that.
We spoke to Jay Kornegay, VP of race and sports operations at the renowned LVH SuperBook. He is based at the Las Vegas Hotel & Casino and that means it’s at the centre of the madness with the first four days likely to mirror the excitement seen at Cheltenham. He reckons the handle will be “90 million” on a statewide basis and that’s just for those betting at LVH. When you consider it doesn’t include any of the other reputable sports books it shows how big this is for the books. The total handle for the entire NCAA tournament will be “close to 130 million.” Much like any bookie the world over Kornegay will be hoping the big guns don’t cover or make it to the final four.
“Worst result for us will be the favorites covering [the spread],” Kornegay said. “Also, we don’t want Colorado State, Baylor, Vanderbilt or Wichita State to advance.”
There’s no doubting the importance this event has in the hearts of U.S. sports bettors and Kornegay revealed that LVH sees more money than the Super Bowl during the madness.
“We’ll write more tickets and money on the entire tournament than the SB,” he said. “The first four days of the tournament is comparable to the SB.”
From The Sports Guy’s Wire Bracketology to If March Madness Were Poker right here on CalvinAyre.com we’ve seen some interesting recreations in the past week or so. That will all go out the window later tonight when the first tip goes off and all that anyone cares about is THE bracket!