2021 NCAA Tournament: States that Don’t Allow Bets on Hometown Teams

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Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Giorgi Bezhanishvili

There are 22 teams in the NCAA Tournament that hail from states that have legalized and are operating sportsbooks within the states, but that doesn’t mean that fans within the state can gamble on their favorite college basketball team.

New York, Virginia, New Jersey and Illinois all have legalized sports gambling, but have made it against the rules to bet on college teams that come from that state.

That means in order to bet on the Rutgers-Clemson game, a person in New Jersey would likely have the closest drive into Pennsylvania to make a bet. Someone in New York who wanted to bet on Syracuse, Iona, Colgate or St. Bonaventure, would also travel to Pennsylvania or New Hampshire, depending on what part of the state from which they were coming.

Virginians who wanted to bet on Norfolk State, Virginia, Virginia Tech, VCU or Liberty, would travel easiest to West Virginia or Tennessee, while people from Illinois, wanting to bet on the Illini or Loyola, could get action in Indiana or Iowa. Lastly, a Georgetown fan in Washington D.C. cannot bet on the Hoyas, but an easy trip into Virginia would solve that problem.

Six states don’t present a problem for the home town fans. Pennsylvanians can bet on Villanova and Drexel, while West Virginians can support the Mountaineers with their bankroll. Indiana rules let fans bet on Purdue as does Colorado and the Buffaloes. Finally, Michigan lets fans bet on the Wolverines and the Spartans and Iowa also has no issues with fans betting on the Hawkeyes or Drake.

Not being allowed to bet on local teams presents a challenge to some fans, but we’re at a point in legalized sports betting, especially on the East Coast, that there’s a way to make a play with a field trip of an hour or two.

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