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Sports betting alternatives in Missouri in 2024

While sports betting is not yet legal in Missouri, daily fantasy sports apps and social sportsbooks are available, though not regulated by the state.

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Is sports betting legal in Missouri?

No. There are no legal sportsbooks in Missouri at this time. The nearest places to make a bet are in Kansas, Iowa, Illinois, Tennessee and Arkansas.

There are legal sportsbooks located a short drive from downtown St. Louis and Kansas City in East St. Louis, Illinois and Kansas City, Kansas.

What’s happening in Missouri sports betting right now

Status of Missouri sports betting

While efforts to legalize sports betting in Missouri failed again in 2023, there is renewed hope in 2024. Plenty of stakeholders in the state, including pro sports organizations, casinos, and politicians, want legal betting in Missouri.

The public also appears to be on board with legalization, and there is some external pressure. Legal states surround Missouri, as seven of the eight states bordering Missouri are legal (Kansas, Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, and Nebraska). The only neighboring state that does not allow sports betting is Oklahoma.

The 2024 Legislative session started with two new sports betting bills: SB 852 and SB 824.

SB 852 would legalize online sports betting statewide and in-person sports betting on gambling boats with a 12% tax rate.

SB 824 is similar to SB 852 but would include a 10% tax rate and video lottery terminals (VLTs). A 2023 sports betting bill did not pass because it did not tie VLTs into the bill and was subsequently filibustered by Missouri Sen. Denny Hoskins.

While both bills were promising, legislators believe they are headed toward another stalemate in the Senate, and stakeholders are redirecting their efforts toward the Winning for Missouri Education ballot initiative with hopes of letting citizens decide.

When will online sports betting launch in Missouri?

No earlier than 2024. With online sports betting bills failing to pass the Senate before the 2023 legislative session adjourned for the year, legislators must now hope the new 2024 bills or ballot initiatives are successful.

Sports betting sites that could launch in Missouri

The bills under consideration in Missouri during the 2023 session allowed plenty of sports betting apps to launch. The state’s 13 casinos would have had as many as three skins each, and certain sports teams could also have partnered with a sportsbook app to offer the top sports betting promos.

In all, there could have been provisions for more than 40 apps to launch, although it’s not clear whether the actual number that Missouri can support is that high. Nevertheless, here are some of the online sportsbooks that we see as most likely to appear if the state decides to legalize online sports betting with similar legislation in the future:

Latest Missouri sports betting news

Legal sports betting options in Missouri

There are currently no legal sports betting options in Missouri. The state legalized betting on horse races in 1984, but only at racetracks. There are no racetracks in Missouri, so there is no legal betting on horses.

There are illegal offshore websites that offer sports betting in Missouri. They do not hold a license from any US jurisdiction to legally accept bets from residents. Without regulation from the state, these offshore betting apps can’t be counted on to pay out winnings and have been known to disappear with people’s money.

The safest and most protected way to bet on sports in the United States is with a licensed operator.

Most popular sports to bet on in Missouri

Missouri is home to several professional sports organizations. There are representatives of almost every major sports league in the Show-Me State. In some cases, there are two. Whenever Missouri legalizes sports betting, these teams will be hot tickets.

NFL betting in Missouri

The story of the NFL in Missouri is very much a tale of two cities. Kansas City is home to the defending Super Bowl champions. Meanwhile, St. Louis has had two NFL teams leave the city. The bottom line is that there is only one Missouri NFL team right now:

MLB betting in Missouri

Missouri’s two major cities are home to a Major League Baseball team. Both have experienced success in the past two decades, with World Series rings in both camps.

NHL betting in Missouri

A single representative from the NHL calls Missouri home, and in 2019, it brought the state its first Stanley Cup.

NBA betting in Missouri

The lone exception to the presence of major professional sports leagues in Missouri is the NBA. Since the Kansas City Kings left in the mid-1980s, the state has been without an NBA representative.

For whatever reason, professional basketball has had difficulty staying afloat in Missouri. Before the Kings, Missourians also witnessed the end of both the NBA’s St. Louis Bombers and the ABA’s Spirits of St. Louis, along with the arrival of the St. Louis Hawks and then their departure to Atlanta. NBA fans in Missouri must turn to the Indiana Pacers, Oklahoma City Thunder, Memphis Grizzlies or Chicago Bulls as the closest teams to root for.

NCAA betting in Missouri

Missouri is home to several prominent universities. Of course, the largest and best-known college in the state is the University of Missouri in Columbia. The Tigers have experienced success in multiple sports. However, there are several other Division I universities in Missouri, and many of them figure to be popular options if the state allows sports betting:

The unknown factor for college sports betting in Missouri is how many activities the law or the Missouri Gaming Commission would allow as options for Missouri sports bettors. In-state colleges are frequent subjects of restrictions from lawmakers and gambling commissions in other states. Bettors sometimes cannot place certain types of wagers or bet on in-state schools at all.

So, although games featuring the schools above would be popular choices, it’s not yet clear whether they will be legal options.

Missouri and daily fantasy sports

Daily fantasy sports contests are legal under Missouri state law. The Missouri Fantasy Consumer Protection Act of 2016 established a licensing format for any legitimate DFS providers to operate as normal vendors in the state. FanDuel, DraftKings, and six other DFS companies are in good standing with the Missouri government to do business in the state.

Is horse racing legal in Missouri?

Yes, technically, but no racing currently operates in Missouri. Although the state legalized horse racing and betting in 1984, no developers ever found the details appealing enough to open a track.

One problem is the law only permits simulcast wagering on days tracks hold live races.

There have been several efforts in the legislature over the years to attract investors in opening a track by changing the law to allow simulcast betting throughout the year and allow casino games at racetracks, but the efforts were unsuccessful.

Although horse betting theoretically is legal in Missouri at a racetrack, it is not legal to bet on races from around the country on online platforms.

Missouri sports betting timeline

2024

Two new sports betting bills, SB 852 and SB 824, are filed at the start of the state’s 2024 Legislative session.

2023

Multiple sports betting bills were introduced during the 2023 Legislative session, including SB 30, which passed the House but failed in the Senate near the finish line.

All the introduced legislation failed during the 2023 session, with Sen. Denny Hoskins playing a key role. Rep. Hoskins wants sports betting tied to regulatory language for video lottery terminals and participated in filibusters throughout the session.

The Hoskins obstruction began in 2022 when he prevented Rep. Dan Houx’s proposal despite a coalition of the state’s professional teams, casinos, and national sportsbook operators backing the legislation.

In September, the Missouri Pro Sports Coalition, comprised of six pro sports teams in the state, filed eight proposals to amend the state constitution to allow Missouri sportsbooks.

2022

There was renewed hope in 2022 for Missouri’s online sports betting. A proposal from a coalition backed by the state’s professional sports teams, casinos, and national sportsbook operators had steam.

Legislation containing the proposal passed the House and advanced to the Senate floor. In the Senate chamber, however, the proposal was filibustered by the author of a competing bill.

While three alternate proposals were presented to the coalition, the casino disagreed with the new compromises. The Senate adjourned for the year without acting on a sports betting bill, leaving legalization hopes to future years.

2021

While there was momentum from previous years’ efforts, Missouri sports betting legislation failed to gain much traction in 2021. A main bill legalizing sports betting fell to the side without casino support as it was tied to video lottery terminal regulation.

2020

Despite the progress made in the special committee at the end of 2019, Missouri legislators introduced six bills in 2020, and most had the same problems as old bills.

Even after what Rep. Dan Shaul said in the special committee, he introduced a bill with an integrity fee and official league data. That bill, which also included video lottery terminals and allowing the lottery to offer games based on the outcomes of sporting events, quickly advanced to the House floor.

Two other bills advanced with committee votes, Rep. Cody Smith’s H 2284 and Rep. Phil Christofanelli’s H 2318.

Both their bills limited MS sports betting to riverboat casinos, permitting online platforms to tether with the casinos. In the committee, Smith removed the integrity fee from his bill, leaving the official league data mandate.

Christofanelli’s bill didn’t include an integrity fee or data mandate and kept the tax rate to 6.75%, the same as Nevada.

2019

A Missouri sports betting bill passed by the House General Laws Committee was like a dream to sports leagues. Not only would it have given them their ask of an official league data mandate, but also its old ask of a 0.25% integrity fee plus an additional 0.6% of handle to fund maintenance upkeep at Missouri sports facilities.

Special Interim Committee on Gaming convened in October seemed to have a better understanding of what was needed in a bill for the sportsbook operators in the state to put out a competitive product.

Chairman Shaul recapped the three-hour meeting by saying all in attendance wanted mobile MO sports betting without in-person registration, no limits on markets or teams, and no integrity fee or official league data mandate.

2018

The first MO sports betting bills appeared in 2018. Even then, there was a lot of interest but not much agreement on how to conduct sports betting.

In preparation for the US Supreme Court overturning PASPA, Missouri legislators introduced six sports betting bills.

Each of them directed the Missouri Gaming Commission to promulgate sports betting regulations if federal prohibitions go away.

Missouri sports betting FAQ

Who would oversee sports betting in Missouri?

The Missouri Gaming Commission. The MGC oversees all gambling in the state — even charitable gaming — except for the lottery. It is the natural regulator for any new gambling in Missouri, including sports betting, and many of the bills under consideration explicitly name it as the oversight agency. It’s possible that the lottery commission might end up in charge of regulation, but it is the less likely of the two options.

Will I be able to bet online in Missouri?

Likely yes. The most prominent measures under consideration allow for online and retail sports betting. Barring some unforeseen changes during the amendment process, Missourians will be able to bet online. Given the examples that Missouri lawmakers have observed in Iowa and Illinois with initial in-person registration requirements muting revenue, it’s unlikely that any legislator will want to restrict online sports betting with tethering.

Who will be able to bet on sports in Missouri?

You’ll need to be 21 or older. The existing gambling options in the state have already established a precedent for players to be over the drinking age, and the active measures in the Missouri General Assembly each identify eligible players as people over the age of 21.

Some sports betting websites say they accept bets from the United States. Are those legal options?

No. There are currently no sportsbook operators that are licensed at the federal level, which means all US sportsbooks are licensed at the state level. Any website that suggests betting from anywhere in the US is allowed is a website that operates offshore. It is not legal for those sites to accept bets from US citizens, and those sites offer no protection to those who bet on them.