Super Bowl Sunday Generates Over $1 Million In Tax Revenue In Illinois

Posted By Joe Boozell on February 8, 2021

Illinoisans bet $45.6 million on Super Bowl LV, according to data from the Illinois Gaming Board (IGB).

Sportsbooks profited $7.7 million, which generated $1.1 million in tax revenue.

Despite three of the five online sportsbooks — DraftKings, BetRivers and FanDuel — experiencing outages at crucial points in the evening.

About 94% of the handle was mobile, consistent with monthly trends. Retail sportsbooks have reopened across the state, but as expected, online betting was the most significant driver.

Super Bowl 55 was the first big game on which Illinoisans could legally bet. While we likely won’t know full February handle numbers until April, the final tally figures to be gaudy thanks to Super Bowl betting.

Could have Illinois’ Super Bowl figure been higher?

The short answer: yes. While $45.6 million in a day is quite impressive without context, it would have been higher if Illinois’ three most popular betting apps had not experienced issues.

DraftKings, BetRivers and FanDuel combined to make up 92% of handle in the most recent revenue report. And an hour before kickoff, customers were mostly unable to place bets with any of them.

It’s impossible to project how much handle Illinois lost out on due to the outages, but we expect that they at least had a marginal effect. If not more.

We may not get our answer until next year, assuming there aren’t similar technical issues.

Regardless, $45.6 million is a hefty number for a single day.

For context, Illinois took in $449.2 million in bets in November. That averages out to about $15 million per day.

If there was a Super Bowl every day, the monthly handle would be well over $1 billion.

Of course, there isn’t. But with March Madness betting approaching, this provides a useful reference point for how Illinois bettors treat the biggest events.

If this is any indication, March should be a banner month for the Land of Lincoln.

The game went the sportsbooks’ way

Sportsbooks held a whopping 16.8% of handle, far higher than the industry average. The industry-standard is typically 5-6%.

There are likely many factors in play here, but the main reason is the public love for the Kansas City Chiefs. Of course, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers won 31-9, easily covering as 3-point underdogs.

At FanDuel, for instance, about 72% of the money was on the Chiefs (-3) heading into the game. The under also hit, and 69% of the action for that market was on the over.

So, while it was a bad day for Illinois sportsbooks from a technical standpoint, the game itself played out beautifully for the operators.

Photo by David J. Phillips / AP
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Joe Boozell

Joe Boozell has also been a college sports writer for NCAA.com since 2015. His work has also appeared in Bleacher Report, FoxSports.com and NBA.com. Growing up, Boozell squared off against both Anthony Davis and Frank Kaminsky in the Chicagoland basketball scene ... you can imagine how that went.

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