Apr 25, 2019; Nashville, TN, USA; Tennessee Titans flags prior to the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft in Downtown Nashville. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
- Sports betting is now legal in Tennessee, but don't expect any sites or apps to go live until early 2020.
- Sports betting will be offered exclusively online, a contrast from many other states still offering only in-person betting at retail books.
The state passed legislation in April 2019 to legalize sports gambling and it will be offered online only with sites and mobile apps, not in brick-and-mortar retail locations. That’s the opposite of what many states have passed in the newly-legal United States market.
Here are some of the basics you need to know about Tennessee sports betting:
Potential Tennessee Sports Betting Sites & Apps
No operators have announced their intentions to launch a sports betting site in Tennessee, but expect the major national players to be first to market. Any company can operate a sportsbook in Tennessee if approved for a $750,000 per year license.
Those may include:
- William Hill
When Will Tennessee Sports Betting Launch?
We don’t have firm dates for when sports betting will launch in Tennessee, but it almost certainly won’t be in time for the 2019 football season. Expect later this fall or early 2020.
The Tennessee Lottery is tasked with overseeing sports betting in the state, and is still working through regulations for operators.
Is Online Gambling Legal in Tennessee?
Yes, online gambling is now legal in Tennessee. Bettors are just waiting on operators to begin offering a sports betting product.
Once operational, bettors will need to be in state borders to place bets.
Is Bovada Legal In Tennessee?
Bovada is not legal in Tennessee, and won’t be necessary for sports bettors in the Volunteer State soon.
How Do I Bet on Sports in Tennessee?
First you’ll need to deposit money into an online sportsbook to bet in Tennessee, once they’re live.
Second, learn about sports betting basics:
1. Favorites vs. Underdogs
When oddsmakers release odds for a game, the first thing they do is decide which team should be the favorite and which should be the underdog. The favorite is the team that is expected to win the game, while the underdog is expected to lose.
A point spread is the expected margin of victory in a game. A favorite “gives” points, while an underdog “gets” points. For example, let’s say the Titans are 3.5-point favorites (-3.5) against the Jaguars. That makes the Jags +3.5.
If Tennessee wins by 4 points or more, it covers the spread. If Jacksonville loses by 3 or fewer, or wins outright, it covers.
Spreads are available for all sports, but they are predominantly used when betting on football and basketball.
Moneylines involve picking the straight-up winner of the game, but with a price attached. As a 3.5-point favorite, the Titans will be around -180 on the moneyline — if you just want to wager on Tennessee winning, you’ll have to risk $18 to win $10. The Jags might be +160 — you’re risking $10 to win $16 on Jacksonville winning the game outright.
Like with a point spread, the minus sign is associated with the favorite and the plus with the underdog.
4. Over/Unders (Totals)
Every game will have an over/under, which is the total points scored by both teams. In that same Titans-Jaguars game, the total might be 42 — you can wager on whether they will combine for more or less than 42 points.
What States Have Legalized Sports Gambling?
- Nevada (Live)
- Delaware (Live)
- New Jersey (Live)
- Mississippi (Live)
- West Virginia (Live)
- Pennsylvania (Live)
- Rhode Island (Live)
- Arkansas (Live)
- New York (Live)
- New Mexico (Live, limited)
- Illinois (Passed)
- Indiana (Passed)
- Iowa (Passed)
- Maine (Passed)
- Montana (Passed)
- New Hampshire (Passed)
- Tennessee (Passed)
- North Carolina (Awaiting governor’s action)