Last updated: May 18, 2022
Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly signed sports betting legislation into law May 12, 2022.
Regulators will now work to get the online and retail sports betting ecosystem up and running by the fall as they hope to catch some of the NFL season.
SB84 received approval from the House and Senate in April 2022. The 2022 legislative effort almost crashed at the eleventh hour. But once the Senate gave its approval in the early morning hours of April 29, the deal was done. The bill legalizes mobile and retail sports betting in Kansas through the state’s four casinos.
Read on for all the latest news and information about the next steps for online sports betting in Kansas.
What’s happening in Kansas sports betting right now
- May 16, 2022 — Boot Hill Casino announced its online sports betting partners: DraftKings and Bally Bet. The casino will also have a DraftKings retail sportsbook in Dodge City.
- May 12, 2022 — Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly signs sports betting legislation into law, effective July 1. Regulators will work to launch sports betting to capture some of the NFL season.
- May 10, 2022 — Regulators expect sports betting can take place at some point during the 2022 NFL season. They will start working on rules once Gov. Laura Kelly signs the bill, which she is expected to do this week.
- April 29, 2022 — In a late-night session, the Kansas Senate voted 21-13 in favor of SB84, the bill that legalizes retail and online sports betting in the state. The bill now heads to Gov. Laura Kelly’s desk.
- April 19, 2022 — The NHL announced the Arizona Coyotes will play the St. Louis Blues in a preseason game in Wichita, KS, in September. The news comes as the KS sports betting bill dictates tax revenue goes to an attraction fund for professional sports teams.
- April 13, 2022 — Kansas Senate President Ty Masterson told a local radio show the sports betting bill will likely cross the line when the chamber reconvenes April 25. The bill passed the House in the late hours before the legislature adjourned for a three-week veto break.
- April 1, 2022 — A conference committee in Kansas came to an agreement on SB 84 and the House approved it late during the session. The Senate did not take up the bill before adjourning, leaving sports betting hanging until at least April 25.
- March 30, 2022 — The Kansas House pulled SB 84 out to the floor, amending it to include a new proposal discussed in committee the previous two weeks. The bill passed and now the Senate and House must agree on a final version of the bill before it heads to the governor.
- March 29, 2022 — A Kansas committee was ready to advance a sports betting bill before a hiccup in a procedural process. A representative in the committee tells LSR it still has a good shot to pass this year.
- March 24, 2022 — Kansas representatives discussed a new sports betting bill this week. While passing a bill in Missouri, legislators said they heard Kansas lawmakers were gearing up to legalize sports betting by April 1.
- March 18, 2022 — Kansas legislators sent SB 84 back to a House committee with plans to put the bill in working order so the Senate can concur. Sources are still optimistic the bill can pass in 2022.
Is sports betting legal in Kansas?
Sports betting will be legal in Kansas effective July 1. There are no legal online or retail sportsbooks in the state at this time.
Once launched the state’s four casinos can operate retail sportsbooks and partner with up to three online operators each.
The status of Kansas sports betting
Gov. Laura Kelly signed sports betting legislation into law May 12, effective July 1. The two Kansas legislative chambers passed two versions of SB 84 by late March. The two chambers hammered out their differences and the Kansas House approved the deal on April 1.
The Senate did not take action on the deal before adjourning for three weeks that same night. The chamber took up the bill when it returned in late April and needed a second conference committee to reach approval before the Senate signed off on SB 84 on April 29.
When will online sports betting launch in Kansas?
With Gov. Laura Kelly’s signature, the state can then begin working on regulations for a launch. That could be later in 2022 at the start of the NFL season or even early 2023.
Regulators still have to create the rules for the new activity and put a licensing structure in place. The Kansas Racing and Gaming Commission and Kansas Lottery could take several months to get everything lined up, which could leave not enough time to launch in 2022. There’s even a chance that the commissions would explicitly specify a launch date, as is the case with Ohio sports betting.
All that said, it’s hard to put an estimate on the exact launch date in Kansas.
Sportsbook apps that could launch in Kansas
The sports betting bill that has passed both chambers includes up to three online skins for each of the four casinos in the state. Sports betting partnerships abound at the moment, and there are many major sportsbooks with ties to the state. Here is a list of likely sportsbook operators who could launch in Kansas:
- Barstool Sportsbook: Barstool is Penn National Gaming’s sports betting brand. Penn National, in turn, owns Hollywood Casino at Kansas Speedway, and would be almost certain to use that venue as a home base for sports betting operations.
- BetMGM Sportsbook: MGM Resorts International is one of the world’s largest casino companies and finds ways to launch in most states. BetMGM has plenty of options for betting, both in terms of the available sports and the types of wagers you can place.
- Caesars Sportsbook: Many Kansans have likely visited Caesars properties, including just across the border in Kansas City, Missouri. As such, it would not be a surprise if Caesars Sportsbook makes a play in Kansas.
- DraftKings Sportsbook: DraftKings has operated in Kansas for many years as a daily fantasy sports provider and won’t be an unknown name. DraftKings is also a top sportsbook company and is often one of the first books to launch in any state.
- FanDuel Sportsbook: FanDuel has become a major sportsbook in recent years, in part because few sportsbook apps are easier to use than FanDuel’s. FanDuel also has an access partnership with Boyd Gaming, which owns the Kansas Star Casino.
- Hard Rock Sportsbook: Hard Rock Sportsbook is a lesser-known entity in sports betting, despite its well-known brand name. However, Hard Rock has a relationship with Peninsula Pacific Entertainment, which operates the Kansas Crossing Casino.
- PointsBet Sportsbook: This Australian company has become a bigger name in the US in the past few years. The sportsbook has distinguished itself through its signature wager, PointsBetting, which adds a multiplier element to the standard spread bet. PointsBet also has a relationship with Peninsula Pacific Entertainment, and it has a history of appearing in new sports betting states.
As more information becomes available, we will update this list accordingly. Additional partnerships and arrangements could put other apps into focus.
Recent Kansas sports betting news
Kansas sports betting bills
A Kansas House committee started work on HB2470 in March 2022, nearly a year after a bill to allow sports betting in Kansas passed the Senate in 2021. The House inserted the language from HB2470 into SB 84 and advanced it. The two chambers then worked out their differences in a conference committee.
The House passed the deal before adjourning for a three-week veto break, but the Senate did not. The chamber voted on the issue when it returned later in April, first rejecting a deal before agreeing to an adjusted one. A late-night session resulted in a 21-13 vote in favor of SB84. The bill now awaits the governor’s signature.
The bill legalizes retail and mobile sports betting through the state’s four casinos. In addition, the bill calls for the following:
- Each casino can have up to three online skins and enter into up to 50 retailer partnerships, including with the Kansas Speedway.
- A casino can also request an additional online skin in partnership with a professional sports team (Sporting Kansas City of the MLS).
- Retail and online sports betting will be taxed at 10%.
- Allows for betting on pro, college and motorsports, or special events authorized by the commission.
Most popular sports to bet on in Kansas
Although Kansas does not host any major professional sports teams from the four biggest leagues, it is home to an MLS squad. In addition, there are teams in adjacent states that hold Kansan loyalties and several in-state colleges with rabid fanbases. Here are some potentially popular betting options:
No college team in Kansas holds more sway than the Kansas Jayhawks. KU is a perennial power in basketball and has fielded strong teams in many other sports. Kansans who don’t care for the Jayhawks might pull for the Kansas State Wildcats. Kansas is also home to the Wichita State Shockers, who have had moderate success in the March Madness and are always a dangerous mid-major for power conference teams to play.
Even though the Kansas City Chiefs call the Missouri side of the border home, the Chiefs are a fan favorite in the Sunflower State. Chiefs games routinely air across the state, and the team’s recent success has only increased local interest. Elsewhere in Kansas, you might find supporters of the Denver Broncos and Dallas Cowboys. Regardless of whether an NFL team ever moves to Kansas, NFL betting would likely be one of the most popular sports betting options in the state if it becomes legal.
Kansas residents have dealt with the departures of several NBA teams from nearby Missouri over the years. Most recently, the Kansas City Kings left for Sacramento in the 1980s, leaving Kansans without many options for NBA loyalties. For residents who still want a team, most tend to throw their loyalties south to the Oklahoma City Thunder. Unfortunately, the Thunder haven’t done much of note in recent seasons. It’s also possible that Kansas is home to a number of Philadelphia 76ers fans, as the most famous Jayhawk in the league, Joel Embiid, plays there.
The most obvious team to hold the hearts of Kansas baseball fans is the Kansas City Royals. The Royals, like their NFL counterparts, call Missouri home but are an obvious proxy for Kansans. A World Series victory within the past decade has no doubt bolstered the ranks of their followers.
The only major sports team in Kansas proper is Major League Soccer’s Sporting City KC. The team plays its games at Children’s Mercy Park, which could become a venue for a sportsbook sometime in the future, depending on Kansas legislation. Sporting City KC, formerly known as the Kansas City Wiz, has two MLS Cup victories in its history.
Because Kansas Speedway plays host to two annual NASCAR Cup Series races and several other NASCAR events each year, it is undoubtedly a big draw for the people of Kansas. In particular, the Hollywood Casino 400 is one of 10 NASCAR events that serve as playoff races for the main season. So if sports betting launches in Kansas, there will likely be plenty of wagering on the outcomes at the 1.5-mile track.
Legal gambling options in Kansas
While Kansas is not particularly well-known for its gambling options, there are several outlets for Kansas residents to place a bet. The primary venues for gambling in Kansas are the 10 casino locations.
Six of these casinos are tribal locations under the ownership of federally recognized Native American tribes that reside in Kansas. The other four casinos are commercial properties. Interestingly, one of the commercial casinos is state-owned, a rarity in the United States. The Kansas Expanded Lottery Act of 2007 authorized the four casinos to be located in different areas of the state. Kansans can gamble at the following places:
- 7th Street Casino — 777 N. Seventh St. Trafficway, Kansas City, KS 66101
- Boot Hill Casino — 4000 W. Comanche St., Dodge City, KS 67801
- Casino White Cloud — 777 Jackpot Drive, White Cloud, KS 66094
- Crosswinds Casino — 777 Jackpot Drive, Park City, KS 67147
- Golden Eagle Casino — 1121 Goldfinch Road, Horton, KS 66439
- Hollywood Casino at Kansas Speedway — 777 Hollywood Casino Blvd., Kansas City, KS 66111
- Kansas Crossing Casino and Hotel — 1275 S, US Highway 69, Pittsburg, KS 66762
- Kansas Star Casino — 777 Kansas Star Drive, Mulvane, KS 67110
- Prairie Band Casino & Resort — 12305 150th Road, Mayetta, KS 66509
- Sac and Fox Casino — 1322 US Highway 75, Powhattan, KS 66527
The other main outlet for Kansans is the Kansas Lottery. The lottery offers the standard scratch-off tickets and draw options that you can find in many other states. Major multi-state drawings like Mega Millions and Powerball are available at any Kansas Lottery retailer.
In addition, the Kansas Lottery offers several games through its retail outlets, such as keno, the keno-like Racetrax and the Millionaire Raffle. Although the lottery has an information app, there is no way to purchase Kansas Lottery tickets online.
There are illegal offshore websites that offer sports betting in Kansas. They do not hold a license from any US jurisdiction to legally accept bets from residents. Without regulation from the state, these offshore betting sites are under no obligation to pay out winnings or refund deposits if they cease operations or change their names. The only safe and protected way to bet on sports in the United States is to do so with a licensed sportsbook.
Can you play daily fantasy sports in Kansas?
Yes. Daily fantasy sports contests are legal in Kansas. In fact, they have been legal and regulated as valid activities in the Sunflower State since 2015. Then-Gov. Sam Brownback signed off on HB 2155 after it passed both chambers of the Kansas Legislature. The bill also increased options for playing bingo, lottery games, and raffles in Kansas.
Is horse betting legal in Kansas?
However, live horse racing has not taken place in the state since 2008. In 1987, following voter approval of a constitutional amendment, the Kansas Legislature legalized horse and greyhound racing with the Kansas Parimutuel Racing Act. The hub of greyhound breeding in the US is in Abilene, Kansas.
The three horse racing tracks and one greyhound track that operated in the state closed shortly after Kansas legalized casino gambling with the Kansas Expanded Lottery Act of 2007. That act also permitted racetracks to offer slot machines, but at a 40% tax compared to the 22% tax the casinos would pay.
There are discussions that the tracks could reopen if they could offer sports betting on a level playing field with the casino tax rate on electronic gambling machines. However, an amendment to the 2020 Kansas sports betting bill on the Senate floor lowering the slot machine tax for racetracks to 22% failed by a narrow margin.
Kansas sports betting timeline
Following several sessions in the House Federal and State Affairs Committee, the House inserts the language from a compromise bill, HB2470, into SB 84, which passed the Senate last year. While the base of the proposals are the same – conducting sports betting through up to three skins from the four casinos in the state – the House adds several other components.
The chambers came to an agreement, including the House addition of retail partnerships. The conference committee also agreed to a 10% tax on retail and mobile sports betting.
The House approved the deal before adjouring for a three-week veto break. The Senate did not advance the bill but took up the bill when it returned. A 21-13 vote sealed the deal on April 29, sending SB 84 to the governor, who signed the bill May 12. The law goes into effect July 1.
The Kansas Senate passed a bill, 26-12, in March 2021. That bill would expand the state lottery and allow each of the state’s four casinos to partner with three online brands.
The House voted against a substation for the Senate bill, 77-40. That vote effectively killed the chances of a 2021 sports betting legalization in Kansas.
The House bill included a lottery sportsbook partner, allowing for up to 1,200 retailers to take sports bets on lottery-approved machines. The states casinos were also allowed one sportsbook partner for online betting.
Another hurdle for Kansas sports betting in 2021: Gov. Laura Kelly previously was against sports betting bills, but could be amendable to more money flowing through the lottery.
The Kansas Senate embraced a more industry-friendly path in 2020 and passed a bill that authorized sports betting at the four state-owned casinos with a tiered tax structure of 7.5% for wagers placed in person and 10% for wagers placed online.
A House hearing showed the Senate bill had universal support from the casinos but opposition from the non-operating racetracks, horse and greyhound industries in Kansas. There were also reports that Gov. Laura Kelly wouldn’t sign the Senate bill as passed.
There were big differences between the Senate bill and the House bill, which sought to allow sports wagering at up to 1,200 lottery retailers, double the tax rate and require the use of official league data.
It was already going to be a difficult path to iron out those differences, but any chance for the legislature to finish KS sports betting were upended by the coronavirus cutting the legislative session three weeks short.
After getting out to an early start with action the previous year, Kansas sports betting seemed to be a good bet entering 2019.
However, the legislative effort never got off the ground as an agreement couldn’t be reached on who would run sports betting.
The Kansas Constitution specifies that the state must run any gambling. This is why the state owns the four casinos but partnered with gaming companies to operate and run them.
An effort for the lottery to run KS sports betting at a 50% tax rate drew opposition from the casino companies, killing the efforts.
The Kansas legislature has been at it with sports betting legislation since before the US Supreme Court overturned PASPA in May 2018.
Back in 2018, Kansas was trying to be one of the first states out of the gate with sports betting.
The legislature held hearings on three bills, including one that would have authorized the Kansas Lottery to conduct wagering at lottery retailers and by contracting with gaming and horse racing facilities.
Kansas was one of the first states in which a sports betting integrity fee appeared in favor of the professional sports leagues.
Kansas sports betting FAQ
Who would oversee sports betting in Kansas?
The Kansas Racing and Gaming Commission and the Kansas Lottery. As per SB 84, the lottery oversees sports betting regulation and the KRGC handles regulations on sports gambling advertisements.
What is the legal gambling age in Kansas?
You must be 21 or older for casinos and 18 or older for the lottery and online horse betting. For the purposes of sports betting, people in Kansas will have to be 21 or older to participate.
Is online sports betting legal in Kansas?
Online sports betting will be legal in Kansas when the market launches. The sports betting bill passed by the House and Senate in 2022 includes online sports betting. Kansas legislators seem to understand that online sportsbooks offer increased tax revenues.
There are some sports betting websites that say they accept bets from the United States. Are those legal options?
No. No sportsbooks are licensed at the federal level, which means all US sportsbooks are licensed at the state level. Any website that accepts bets from anywhere in the US is operating offshore. It is not legal for those sites to accept bets from US citizens, and such sites offer no protection to those who bet there.
Where can I place a sports bet in Kansas?
There are no sportsbooks active or legal in Kansas. However, neighboring states Iowa, Nebraska, Colorado and Arkansas all have legal sports betting in some capacity. Missouri is also considering legalization. Once sports betting in Kansas launches, you can expect to find legal online sportsbooks available throughout the state, as well as kiosks and retail sportsbooks at casinos and their partners.