Maryland Sports Betting
After years of bettors crossing state lines to put money on their favorite teams, sports betting is finally legal and available in the Old Line State.
Maryland voters voted to legalize sports betting in the 2020 federal election. From there, the state government had to pass legislation that codified what sports betting would look like within Maryland borders during the 2021 legislative sessions.
And at last, in December of 2021, the first five retail sportsbooks were licensed and began taking in-person wagers.
Eventually, the Old Line State is expected to be one of the most lucrative betting markets in the United States. But that is dependent on the launch of statewide online and mobile sports betting, which is expected to go live later in 2022.
Top Legal Maryland Retail Sportsbooks
As of early 2022, online mobile and sports betting was still several months away in Maryland. But in the interim, many of the big players in the gambling industry have already established retail locations where you can place wagers.
Launch Date: December 2021
Partner: Washington Nationals
The BetMGM Sportsbook and Lounge at the MGM National Harbor Resort and Casino was the officially the first sportsbook in Maryland to receive its license as well as the first sportsbook to open in early December of 2021.
The state-of-the-art lounge includes a 360-degree, 110-foot wrap-around screen where fans can enjoy food and drink as well as the game.
Additionally, the MGM National Harbor has hosted numerous championship boxing events, with Vasyl Lomachenko and Oleksandr Uskyk among the bigger names to visit the venue. Future fights will give bettors the opportunity to place their wagers on sight before watching the bout in person.
BetMGM is expected to be among the companies to operate online in Maryland once online and mobile betting launches the state, as it does in neighboring Virginia, D.C. and Pennsylvania.
In D.C., that mobile offering accompanies a brick-and-mortar location inside Nationals Park, home of the Washington Nationals.
Launch Date: December 2021
Partner: D.C. United
FanDuel’s Sportsbook at Live! Maryland Hotel Casino also launched on the first day of legal sports wagering in Maryland, and the casino was preparing long before the first bet was placed.
The Live! Sports and Social sports bar actually opened in April of 2021 in anticipation of the eventual opening of FanDuel’s retail location.
The establishment includes a 100-foot media wall, a 47-foot big screen, 40 HD TVs and extensive food and drink options.
Situated just off the Baltimore-Washington Parkway, the sportsbook and casino are easily reachable from both cities and just a 15-minute drive from Baltimore-Washington International Airport.
FanDuel is also expected to operate its online and mobile betting platforms in Maryland when they launch sometime in 2022. It currently does so in 14 U.S. jurisdictions, including neighboring Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia.
The company also partners with soccer’s D.C. United, with plans to open a retail sportsbook at the team’s stadium and offer its mobile platform in the District of Columbia.
Launch Date: December 2021
Partner: Baltimore Ravens
The Caesars Sportsbook at Horseshoe Casino in Baltimore was the third Maryland Casino to debut sports betting early in December of 2021, with a prime location within walking distance of the Baltimore Ravens’ M&T Bank Stadium and the Baltimore Orioles’ Oriole Park at Camden Yards.
Caesars has also inked an official partnership with the Ravens, whose stadium is so close the Casino garage doubles as a gameday parking venue.
The sportsbook is open on the first floor of the casino property and will soon sit next to The Brew Brothers Sports Bar, which is expected to open in 2022 and provide bettors with an immersive viewing experience.
Caesars is also expected to launch its online betting site in Maryland. When it does, it will be the sixth U.S. jurisdiction where the company takes bets online, including in nearby D.C. In Washington, the mobile product also accompanies a retail location inside Capital One Arena, home of basketball’s Washington Wizards and Georgetown Hoyas, and hockey’s Washington Capitals.
Launch Date: December 2021
TwinSpires went live with its first Maryland retail option just before Christmas at the closest casino to Maryland’s Ocean City beach resorts.
Just a short drive from the beach, TwinSpires is often on the same site as live harness racing during the summer months.
If and when TwinSpires launches its online and mobile betting platform in Maryland, it would mark the eighth state where the company takes sports wagers.
Launch Date: December 2021
The Barstool Sportsbook at Hollywood Casino Perryville also launched shortly before Christmas, giving bettors on the I-95 corridor yet another retail sports betting option.
One unique service here is the ability of retail bettors to build their bets online and then present a QR code with their pre-built wagers once they arrive at the retail location.
This sportsbook and casino are just a short drive from the Aberdeen Ironbirds minor league baseball team, owned by former Orioles great Cal Ripken, who grew up in the area.
Retail Sportsbooks Coming Soon to Maryland
Three off-track betting locations have already been approved for sports betting licenses and are expected to begin taking bets in early 2022.
Launch/Partner: TBD (2022)
PointsBet has already announced its partnership with Riverboat on the Potomac, a venue for off-track betting, banquets and other events that sits off a doc in Colonial Beach, Virginia.
Because the venue is officially on the Potomac River, the venue itself falls under Maryland’s jurisdiction rather than Virginia.
There are also plans to open a sports bar in conjunction with the PointsBet SportsBook on the RiverBoat on the Potomac.
Launch/Partner: TBD (2022)
Long Shots is an off-track betting venue and BBQ restaurant and bar in Frederick, Maryland, less than an hour’s drive from both Baltimore and Washington, and just a few minutes from minor league baseball’s Frederick Keys and the Frederick Fairground.
The venue has been approved for a sports betting license, but has yet to announce a partner for its retail sportsbook. Those details are expected in early 2022.
Launch/Partner: TBD (2022)
Greenmount Station in Hampstead, Maryland sits in the heart of the state’s pastoral horse country and definitely has a local feel. It’s perhaps best known for its crab cakes and crab cake mix — available to ship anywhere in the U.S. overnight Monday through Thursday — and its robust beer selection.
While watching races (and soon, other sports), regulars can win their place in the Greenmount Station Beer Club once they’ve tried at least 75 of the bar’s 130-plus beer and malt labels on offer.
The venue is the most recent to win approval for a sports betting license, with a partner announcement and opening date expected sometime in early 2022.
Online Sportsbooks Coming Soon to Maryland
The state is expected to begin awarding up to 60 Class C online and mobile betting licenses in early 2022, with mobile betting to launch in the latter half of the year.
It’s very likely that all of the announced current and future operators of retail sportsbooks in Maryland (FanDuel, BetMGM, Caesars, TwinSpires, BarStool and PointsBet) will also be approved as mobile betting retailers.
How to Start Sports Betting in Maryland
For the moment, you’ll still have to visit one of five retail locations open across the state since December of 2021, Typically, you can place a bet either with a live representative or with a touchscreen kiosk. Payment options at kiosks vary.
If you sign up with any of the host casinos’ rewards programs, you’ll be the first to know when those retail sportsbooks launch their online and mobile options in Maryland. That is currently expected sometime in the latter half of 2022.
Sports Betting Mistakes to Avoid in Maryland
The landscape will change dramatically with the introduction of mobile betting in 2022, but in the interim bettors need to realize there are some cautions to take when placing a sports bet at a casino.
For starters, bettors need to know how live tellers and kiosks accept bets (cash, card, user account funds, etc.). These details can vary at each retail sportsbook.
Secondly, if you are visiting a live teller to place your wager, it can be helpful to research odds and your potential wager in advance since you won’t have a screen directly in front of you.
Thirdly, give yourself a bit of time. The immediate response to retail sports betting has been enormous, with the state generating $16 million of wagering in December of 2021 alone, according to a report from the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency.
Consider visiting a retail sportsbook at less trafficked hours — particularly in the weekday daytime when there are fewer live events going on — until online and mobile wagering is available.
Sports Teams to Bet on in Maryland
Fans in Maryland have an abundance of teams seeking to claim their attention, and in the case of bettors, their financial backing. Pro teams in Baltimore and Washington both claim Maryland as their local territory, as do multiple major college football and basketball programs.
H3: Baltimore Ravens: The Ravens have won two Super Bowls since moving to Baltimore in the mid-1990s, and have one of the NFL’s most electrifying players in Lamar Jackson. They’re also the closest team in Maryland to a retail sportsbook, a few hundred yards closer to the Caesars location (above) than the neighboring Orioles (below).
The Orioles are in rebuilding mode, but have one of MLB’s most talented farm systems and — in Oriole Park at Camden Yards — one of the nation’s premier ballparks. The Birds’ future may soon be like their storied past, when they won three World Series and reached six between 1966 and 1983
Washington Football Team
The WFT has fallen on some lean years, but their fans remain some of the most loyal and die-hard in the NFL. They’re still only one of nine teams to win at least three Super Bowl titles, and one of only eight to make at least five appearances in the big game.
The Nationals brought baseball back to Washington in 2008 and won D.C.’s first World Series in 95 years in 2019. They’re also one of the first major league clubs to feature a retail sportsbook inside the stadium.
The Capitals captured their first Stanley Cup in 2018, and Alex Ovechkins has spent his entire Hall of Fame career in D.C. They play at Capital One Arena, which is also home to a retail sportsbook run by Caesars, and are a perennial playoff contender.
It’s been a while since the glory days of the 1970s, but three-time All-Star Bradley Beal and company can still capture local fans’ imagination. They also play at Capital One Arena, which not only boasts a retail Caesars location but also loads of nearby bars and restaurants.
One of Major League Soccer’s founding members, D.C. United continues to represent the region in Major League Soccer, the highest professional level of the world’s game in the United States in Canada. The Black-and-Red are four-time MLS Cup champions.
The Washington Mystics
The Mystics have been a member of the WNBA since the league’s second season, and their best seasons have come recently. They won the WNBA title in 2019 after reaching their first final the season before. They’ll play their 25th season in 2022.
The Terrapins are trying to build a culture of winning under coach Mike Locksley, and won their first bowl game in more than a decade in December of 2021.
With the Naval Academy based in the state capital of Annapolis, Maryland, the Midshipmen are one of the most unique college football programs in the country, and one half of arguably the college game’s greatest rivalry, the Army-Navy game.
The Terps cagers are in a year of transition after head coach Mark Turgeon stepped down, but this is always a program with the potential to build a championship-level squad while recruiting from two nearby, talent-rich cities. Coach Gary Williams won Maryland’s only national title in 2002.
Before Maryland’s triumph, the Hoyas were once the regional power while producing the likes of Alan Iverson, Dekimbe Mutumbo, Alonzo Mourning and current coach Patrick Ewing.
Other Sports in Maryland to Bet On
There are some special aspects to the landscape of Maryland sports that not everyone may be aware of, but can also offer some interesting betting opportunities for those in the know.
The Preakness / Horse Racing
Baltimore’s Pimlico Racetrack has hosted The Preakness, the second jewel of horse racing’s triple crown, every year for more than a century and for nearly 150 years total. Preakness Day — the third Saturday in May — is the banner day for a state with an underrated racing industry. There are five horse racing tracks in the state in total (three thoroughbred, two harness), and 282 total days of live racing scheduled in 2022.
There have been several high profile fights in Maryland in recent years. MGM National Harbor has welcomed Vasyl Lomachenko, Oleksandr Usyk, Lamont Peterson and Gary Russell Jr., among others. Gervonta Davis also fought in his native Baltimore in 2019. Teofimo Lopez, who defeated Lomachenko in a unification bout in 2020, is scheduled to contest a title eliminator at National Harbor in July of 2022.
Mid-Major College Football and Basketball
While Maryland, Georgetown and Navy are the only local major college programs, Maryland is home to nine NCAA Division I athletics programs. Towson University and Morgan State also have Division 1 FCS Subdivision football programs. Coppin State, Loyola-Baltimore, Maryland-Baltimore County, Maryland-Eastern Shore, Morgan, Mt. St. Mary’s, Navy and Towson all have men’s and women’s basketball programs.
Maryland Sports Betting Site Promotions
The most lucrative sports betting promotions typically apply to online and mobile wagering, which is not yet live in Maryland. But the good news is that many of the companies known for promotions ranging between $500 and $1,000 in value for first-time users are operating retail books in Maryland, including FanDuel, Caesars, BetMGM, Barstool Sports and Twin Spires.
Maryland Sports Betting Law
Sports betting was approved by voter referendum in the 2020 federal election, with the potential for more than 100 licenses in total to be awarded between physical retail and online/mobile wagering.
Class A licenses are for the state’s six casinos, three major league sports stadiums and the Maryland Jockey Club. Class B are for up to 30 more physical locations (not including seven more for off-track betting and large bingo locations), and Class C are for up to 60 mobile licenses.
The previously mentioned Sportsbooks above were awarded the first five Class A licenses in the state.
The Riverboat on the Potomac, Greenmount Station and Long Shots — three off-track betting locations — have been approved for Class B licenses and are expected to open in 2022.
Online and mobile betting isn’t expected to launch until the fall of 2022, in part due to a regulatory drive to make sure more woman- and minority-owned businesses are among those issued mobile licenses. Class A and Class B license holders are both eligible to apply for class C licenses.
There has been some suggestion the state could attempt a uniform mobile launch — meaning all awarded mobile licenses would begin taking wagers at the same time — though that has not been decided.
Maryland Sports Betting FAQs
Here are answers to the most-asked questions about legal sports betting in the state of Maryland.
Is Sports Betting Legal in Maryland?
Yes. Maryland voters legalized sports betting in the state via referendum in the 2020 federal election, with the first retail sportsbooks launching 13 months later at five of the state’s six casinos.
Who Regulates and Oversees Maryland Sports Betting?
The state’s Sports Wagering Application Review Commission, a body made of appointees by the governor’s office, reviews applications, suggests or requires revisions and will award all of the state’s Class A, Class B and Class C sports betting licenses.
The role of general oversight of sports betting falls to the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency, which as its title implies also oversees the Maryland Lottery as well as the state’s other legalized gambling industries, including casinos and horse racing.
Where Can I Bet on Sports in Maryland?
Currently, there are five brick-and-mortar retail sportsbooks in operation: BetMGM Sportsbook at MGM National Harbor; FanDuel Sportsbook at Live! Maryland Hotel & Casino; Caesars Sportsbook at Horseshoe Casino Baltimore; TwinSpires Sportsbook at Ocean Downs Casino; and Barstool Sportsbook at Hollywood Casino Perryville.
Three additional retail locations are expected to open early in 2022: On the Riverboat on the Potomac (PointsBet), Long Shots off-track betting (Partner TBD) and Greenmount Station off-track-betting (partner TBD).
Is Mobile Sports Betting in Maryland Available?
Online and mobile sports betting is not yet available in Maryland, but is expected to launch sometime in the latter half of 2022. When it does, it is expected to be one of the most competitive mobile betting markets in the country, with up to 60 online and mobile betting licenses awarded.
Who Can Bet on Sports in Maryland?
Like the majority of states that have legalized sports betting, Maryland requires sports bettors to be at least 21 years of age to make wagers online or in person. You are not required to be a resident of Maryland to wager at one of the state’s retail sportsbooks, nor eventually for its online sportsbooks), but you must be physically present at the retail sportsbook or physically within the state’s boundaries to wager online.