Georgia Sports Betting
Information on sports betting in Georgia coming soon.
Georgia Sports Betting Bill Dies as House Adjourns
Georgia lawmakers adjourned their 2021 legislative session without voting on sports betting legislation, again killing voters’ chance to legalize wagering.
Georgia Senate Advances Sports Betting Constitutional Amendment
The Georgia Senate advanced a sports betting constiational amendment that would allow voters to legalize wagering in 2022. There are more hurdles to clear, but legal sports betting took a big step forward.
Georgia’s Legal Sports Betting Hopes Continue to Grow
Slowly but surely, Georgia — which has one of the nation’s most politically conservative legislatures — is closing in on legal sports betting.
Georgia Senate Files Bill to Legalize Online Sports Betting
Georgia's state Senate filed a bill that would legalize sports gambling to online platforms, expanding beyond the state's lottery. The bill includes a 10% state tax and the opportunity for potential retail sportsbook locations in-state.
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How Georgia Sports Betting Compares
We graded Georgia on its sports betting bill and experience relative to other states.
Georgia Sports Betting Grading Card:
We're waiting for further legislative progress to grade Georgia's sports betting market.
Georgia Sports Betting Background
Georgia sports betting has not been legalized as of 2021, though progress toward actualizing the movement is underway.
At the end of the 2020 legislative session, lawmakers tried to pass a bill that would allow for sports betting. But the last-minute effort came up short. Stephens said that the majority of Georgians have a positive point of view on gambling and that the bill would likely pass if it had more time to be discussed.
The movement toward this legalization comes after years of debate over legalized wagering and other types of gaming. However, sports betting has garnered approval from professional sports teams including the Atlanta Falcons, Hawks and Braves, among others, pushing this discussion into the forefront of the 2021 political docket.
In the opening days of February, a bill — The Georgia Lottery Mobile Sports Wagering Integrity Act (HB86) — raised by Stephens passed through a committee in the state's House, 20-6. Nearly a week later, the Senate proposed a similar bill with slight changes. Movement toward finding an agreement on legalized sports betting has been swift in 2021.
Georgia is a strict state when it comes to the gaming industry. They do not have a single casino in the state and the only legalized form of gambling comes from the lottery. If sports betting becomes legal, it'd likely follow Tennessee's path of mobile sports betting — at least to start. The recent bill raised through the Senate does, however, open the door for retail sportsbook stations in-state. Despite the movement, constant attempts have fallen short in the past and Gov. Brian Kemp has previously been opposed to the expansion of gaming in Georgia. He has the power to veto any bill even if passed through the House and Senate.
Though the bill has the public's support behind it and is already under consideration by the Georgia legislature, legalized sports betting would likely not take effect until 2022 if the bill is passed in the coming months.
Georgia Sports Betting Tips
Sports Betting for GA Beginners
New to sports betting in Georgia? Check out our 11 sports betting tips for beginners so you can get started placing bets on the Atlanta Braves.
Sports Betting Glossary
The sports betting lexicon is vast and sometimes confusing, especially to new bettors. Check out our sports betting glossary to get up to speed with every term you might need to know.
Sports Betting Mistakes to Avoid
Betting on your favorite teams like the Falcons or the Atlanta Flames might seem like an easy win, but you need to be responsible if you're going to sustain in the sports betting world.
Here are our top mistakes to avoid.
Georgia Teams to Bet on
Pro Sports Teams
Georgia does not allow in-state betting on college athletics. The state does have four professional sports teams, all of which play in or around the Atlanta metropolitan area.
NFL Betting in Georgia
The Atlanta Falcons have never won a Super Bowl in its two appearances but most recently appeared in the championship in 2016. The Falcons currently have the fifth-longest Super Bowl drought, having not won since joining the NFL in 1965. They have made the playoffs eight times since 2000 including four NFC South division titles.
The Falcons play their games at Mercedes-Benz Stadium which opened in 2017. They will start the upcoming season with a brand new coaching staff led by former Tennessee Titans offensive coordinator Arthur Smith. Lifelong Falcon Matt Ryan will remain under center for his 14th straight season, looking for his seventh postseason appearance.
Atlanta Falcons Rivalry #1: vs. New Orleans Saints. In all but Atlanta's inaugural season — the Saints were an expansion team the year after — these two teams have been in the same division and have gone head to head over four decades. and continue to play one another two times a season. For the longest time, these two teams were the only two in the Deep South and remain the oldest and most iconic rivalry in the NFC South. The Falcons lead the series, 53-51, and have won the only postseason matchup between the two in 1991. The Saints, however, hold a three-game winning streak over Atlanta.
Atlanta Falcons Rivalry #2: vs. Carolina Panthers. Ever since joining as an expansion team in 1995, the Panthers and Falcons have been division rivals. Both have been to the Super Bowl two times and lost to the same teams in the championship: Denver Broncos and New England Patriots. This rivalry has been nicknamed the "I-85 Rivalry" for the four hours that separate these stadiums on Interstate 85. Atlanta leads this series, 33-19, and has never faced Carolina in the playoffs. They split this year's home-and-home series with the Falcons, with Atlanta winning the most recent game.
Recommended resource to help you bet smartly on football in Georgia:
NBA Betting in Georgia
The Atlanta Hawks' origin began in 1946, joining the National Basketball League (NBL) as the Buffalo Bisons before quickly moving to Illinois 38 days later and rebranding its franchise as the Tri-Cities Blackhawks. Three years later, they would join the NBA as part of the NBL-BAA merger and would bounce around multiple cities before landing in Atlanta in 1968.
The Hawks currently have the second-longest championship drought behind the Sacramento Kings and have won one championship, in 1958. Their last playoff appearance came in 2016-17, an eventual first-round loss to the Washington Wizards in six games. The Hawks currently play their home games at State Farm Arena in downtown Atlanta.
Trae Young is the current budding star for Atlanta, finishing the 2019-20 season averaging 29.6 points and 9.3 assists per game on 43.7 percent shooting. He is the leader of the team and is surrounded by multiple young pieces for this rebuilding franchise, including John Collins and De'Andre Hunter. The Hawks are coached by Lloyd Pierce and play in the Southeast Division of the NBA's Eastern Conference.
Atlanta Hawks Rivalry #1: vs. Boston Celtics. Though the intensity of this rivalry has taken a few steps back over the last few years, these two teams have had their fair share of battles for the better part of five decades. Whether it was Bob Pettit and Bill Russell squaring off in four NBA Championships, or a young Dominique Wilkins taking on the veteran Larry Bird, these two teams consistently found themselves pitted against one another in the playoffs. Altogether, the Hawks have played Boston in 12 playoff series. The Celtics have gotten the better of Atlanta, winning 10 of those matchups.
Atlanta Hawks Rivalry #2: vs. Cleveland Cavaliers. Another rivalry that has dissipated in intensity over the last few years, the two teams have faced off in the playoffs three times since 2008. All three times, it was LeBron James and the Cavaliers sweeping the Hawks — twice in the conference semifinals and once in the conference championship. The Hawks, despite making the playoffs for a decade straight, never managed to make it out of the East. The Cavaliers meanwhile, consistently won the conference while James was in uniform. These two teams are now in the middle of a rebuild, both with star point guards in Trae Young (Hawks) and Collin Sexton (Cavaliers). Despite their playoff struggles, the Hawks lead the all-time series, 123-119.
Recommended resource to help you bet smartly on basketball in Georgia:
MLB Betting in Georgia
The Atlanta Braves were founded in 1871 and are the oldest continuously operating professional sports franchise in America. They are one of two remaining National League charter franchises and have been in Atlanta since 1966. The Braves are three-time World Series champions, their most recent coming in 1995. After winning five National League pennants in the 1990s, Atlanta has not returned to the World Series since.
The Braves have become a playoff regular over the last few years having won the National League East in three consecutive seasons. Led by reigning MVP Freddie Freeman and star outfielder Ronald Acuna Jr., Atlanta is geared up for success. The Braves play their home games at Truist Park, which opened in 2017, and are managed by Brian Snitker.
Atlanta Braves Rivalry #1: Philadelphia Phillies. Starting in 1993, one year before the National League's division realignment that put the Phillies and Braves in the NL East together, these two teams met in the NLCS. The Phillies would upset the Braves, starting the rivalry that would only grow. After the Braves' dominance in the NL East over a decade, the Phillies became the team to beat in the late 2000s, winning five consecutive division titles from 2007 to 2011, winning a World Series in the process. In 2,471 games, Atlanta holds the advantage, 1291-1180. The Phillies and Braves have only met in the playoffs once, with the Phillies winning in six.
Atlanta Braves Rivalry #2: New York Mets. Though it's simmered down since the mid-2000s, the two teams have had heated exchanges. Like the Phillies, a division realignment put the Mets and Braves in the NL East together in 1994 with the latter winning 11 straight division titles from 1995 through the 2005 season. The Mets would dethrone the Braves in 2006. The two teams have battled in the playoffs twice, the Mets sweeping in 1969 en route to a World Series and the Braves in 1999. This rivalry should be sparked up again with the Mets' change of ownership and offseason moves to establish themselves as title contenders. In 835 regular-season meetings, Atlanta holds the series record, 465-388.
Recommended resource to help you bet smartly on baseball in Georgia:
Soccer Betting in Georgia
Atlanta United FC
This is the newest professional sports franchise in Atlanta after being founded in 2014 and named an expansion team to the MLS in 2017. This team quickly became a fan favorite and has set several league records in both average attendance and highest single-match attendance. It took the club just two years to secure its first title, winning the MLS Cup in 2018. It is Atlanta's first major sports championship since the Braves in 1995.
Atlanta United has since lost several key players and its head coach since the 2018 championship win. Star Josef Martinez also missed last season with an injury as the club struggled mightily. Atlanta United plays their home games at Mercedes-Benz Stadium and are coached by Gabriel Heinze.
Atlanta United Rivalry #1: vs. Orlando City SC. Both joining as expansion teams, the two squads that are just a few hours apart quickly became rivals. It started with a billboard that Atlanta United bought and placed in downtown Orlando taunting the team before their first-ever matchup. That game would live up to the hype with Hector "Tito" Villalba nailing an 86th-minute goal to give Atlanta United a 1-0 win. That shot would later be named the 2017 Goal of the Year. Atlanta does hold the series advantage, 7-2-4, but Orlando City has had the better of the two over the last four matchups, winning and drawing a pair.
Recommended resource to help you bet smartly on hockey in Georgia:
WNBA Betting in Georgia
The Atlanta Dream joined the WNBA in 2008 and, after a brutal inaugural season that ended with a 4-30 record, reeled off six consecutive postseason appearances including three conference championships in four years starting in 2010. The Dream play in the Eastern Conference and are coached by Nicki Collen.
Atlanta has hit a rough stretch over the last couple of years. In Collen's first year as head coach, she led the Dream to a 23-11 record. The Dream would be eliminated in the conference finals. In her two years since, the Dream are a combined 15-41, failing to make the playoffs in back-to-back seasons for the first time in franchise history.
College Sports Teams
College Football Betting in Georgia
Georgia Bulldogs Football
Georgia football is one of the most storied athletic programs in college football history. They have been a constant force in the Southeastern Conference (SEC), ranking 11th all-time in wins and competing in 57 bowl games, tied for second in the NCAAF. The Bulldogs play their home games at Sanford Stadium on the school's campus in Athens, the ninth-largest college stadium with a capacity of 93,246.
Georgia claims two national championships, their last coming in 1980. Herschel Walker led the Bulldogs to a 17-10 victory over Notre Dame in that game, rushing for 150 yards and two touchdowns. The Bulldogs have won 15 conference titles, two Heisman winners and 35 consensus All-Americans. They are currently led by head coach Kirby Smart who has won 78.8 percent of his games and is 4-2 in bowl games.
Georgia Bulldogs Rivalry #1: vs. Auburn Tigers. Referred to as the "Deep South's Oldest Rivalry," this is the second-most played rivalry in college football at 125 games. The first matchup between Georgia and Auburn occurred in 1892 but it has since become an annual matchup starting in 1944. The home site alternates each year with Georgia hosting even years and Auburn odd. Georgia is currently on a four-game win streak and has won seven of its last eight over Auburn. They lead the all-time series 61-56-8.
Georgia Bulldogs Rivalry #2: vs. Florida Gators. These two teams have played every single season since 1926 — outside of 1943 due to World War II — and play every game in Jacksonville, Florida, a neutral site. Nicknamed the "World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party" for the huge crowds and pre-game tailgating it draws, this rivalry is among the most notable in college football. The two teams have met nearly 100 times and normally alternate decades of dominance in the series. The start date of this series is different, according to each program. Georgia has the first matchup occurring in 1904 while Florida says it happened in 1915. Per Georgia Athletics, the Bulldogs hold a 53-44-2 all-time record over the Gators. Florida won the last meeting between the two, 44-28.
Georgia Bulldogs Rivalry #3: vs. Georgia Tech. This in-state rivalry dubbed "Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate" typically takes place annually on Thanksgiving weekend. Just 70 miles separate these two schools. Georgia has won three straight in this 114-game series and is 68-41-5 overall.
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Football
Georgia Tech football has experienced its fair share of ups and downs since its first season in 1892 but has four claimed National Championships and 16 conference titles to its resume. The Yellow Jackets have had plenty of legendary head coaches including John Heisman and Bobby Dodd, both of whom have awards named after them. Altogether, Georgia Tech is 736-507-43, good for a 58.9 win percentage.
The Yellow Jackets have the most lopsided win in football history, 222-0, and have been to 45 bowl games. They are currently led by Geoff Collins who replaced Paul Johnson at the start of the 2019 season. Georgia Tech plays its home games at Bobby Dodd Stadium on campus in Atlanta and has a capacity of 55,000.
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Rivalry #1: vs. Georgia Bulldogs. As mentioned before, this in-state rivalry expands beyond college football but has had its heated affairs on the gridiron. The two teams even have fight songs tailored toward belittling each other.
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Rivalry #2: vs. Virginia Tech. Once the Hokies joined the Atlantic Coast Conference in 2004, the rivalry known as the "Battle of the Techs" took off. These two became clear leaders of the ACC Coastal Division from 2005 through 2012 with one of the two representing the division in each conference championship game. This is a late but budding rivalry between Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech, as the two teams have squared off just 17 times. But the now annual affair will only get more heated as the years go on. The Hokies currently lead the series, 10-7.
Georgia State Panthers Football
A relatively new program, Georgia State football was founded in 2010 and, after two years in the FCS, joined the Sun Belt Conference in 2012. The Panthers initially struggled to gain their footing at the FBS level, going 1-23 over the first two seasons. After Shawn Elliott took over as head coach in 2017, Georgia State has found success, finishing three years above .500 and winning two bowl games in the process. The Panthers play at Center Parc Stadium in Atlanta.
Georgia State Panthers Rivalry: vs. Georgia Southern. An in-state rivalry that began on the football field in 2014, these two teams both compete in the Sun Belt Conference. The annual rivalry matchup between Georgia State and Georgia Southern is nicknamed "Modern Day Hate." These two fan bases constantly compete over who the real GSU is since both schools' acronyms are such.
Georgia Southern Eagles Football
Georgia Southern found plenty of success in the FCS before joining the Sun Belt Conference and moving up to the FBS in 2014. While in the FCS, the Eagles claimed six national titles and, upon joining the Southern Conference from 1993 to 2013, took home 10 conference championships. Since its transition to the FBS, Georgia Southern is 50-38 with four bowl appearances, winning three of them. The Eagles play their home games at Paulson Stadium in Statesboro and are coached by Chad Lunsford.
Georgia Southern Eagles Rivalry #1: vs. Appalachian State. The rivalry known as "Deeper than Hate" started back in 1987 when Appalachian State defeated Georgia Southern in the I-AA Playoffs. Six years later, the two teams joined the Southern Conference and have played each other annually since. Both teams are now in the FBS and part of the Sun Belt Conference where the rivalry continues to grow. The Mountaineers hold the series lead 19-15-1 and won the last matchup, 34-26, snapping Georgia Southern's previous two-game streak.
Georgia Southern Eagles Rivalry #2: vs. Georgia State. As mentioned before, these in-state rivals have a young but growing rivalry. They have only played seven times — every year since 2014 — and Georgia State holds a 4-3 series lead after their 30-24 win in 2020.
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College Basketball Betting in Georgia
Georgia Bulldogs Men's Basketball
Known more for its football team, Georgia basketball has not been able to find similar success. The team has more NIT appearances than NCAA Tournament berths and has just one Final Four appearance (1983). The team's first postseason berth came in that 1983 season under head coach Hugh Durham. That year, the Bulldogs upset both Chris Mullin's St. John's squad and Michael Jordan's North Carolina team. Georgia would eventually fall in the semifinals to Jim Valvano's championship-winning North Carolina State. The most notable player out of Georgia is Dominique Wilkins, though he never competed in the NCAA Tournament.
The Bulldogs play in the SEC and have won two regular-season conference championships and four conference tournaments. Their most recent NCAA Tournament appearance came in 2015. Georgia plays its home games at Stegeman Coliseum on campus in Athens. They are coached by Tom Crean who is in his third season at the helm.
Georgia Bulldogs Rivalry: vs. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. This in-state rivalry extends beyond football as the two squads have played each other 187 times. This is not an annual game since the Bulldogs and Yellow Jackets are in different conferences, but the rivalry remains strong.
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Men's Basketball
Like their in-state counterpart Georgia, the Yellow Jackets have never won the NCAA Tournament. They have, however, been to the finals, a 2004 loss to Connecticut. Georgia Tech has been to the NCAA Tournament 16 times including nine straight from 1985 through the 1993 season.
The Yellow Jackets currently play in the ACC, though they were in the SEC up until the 1979 season. They have won three regular-season conference championships and four conference tournaments. Their most recent NCAA Tournament appearance came in 2010. Georgia Tech plays its home games at McCamish Pavilion on campus in Atlanta and is coached by Josh Pastner.
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Rivalry: vs. Georgia Bulldogs. This has always been a heated rivalry, so much so that when Pastner was hired as head coach of the Yellow Jackets, his first tweet included "#THWg" or To Hell With Georgia. Georgia Tech leads the series over the Bulldogs, 101-86.
Georgia State Panthers Men's Basketball
Georgia State is the most successful mid-major program in the state. The Panthers have five NCAA Tournament appearances including the last two. Georgia State's most recent postseason victory came in a major upset over No. 3-seeded Baylor in 2015, when R.J. Hunter hit a buzzer-beating 3 to advance to the Round of 32. No one can forget Hunter's father and then-head coach Ron Hunter falling off his stool as the ball went through the net. The Panthers are six-time regular-season champions in the Sun Belt. They are coached by former Tennessee assistant Rob Lanier and play home games at GSU Sports Arena in Atlanta.
Georgia State Panthers Rivalry: vs. Georgia Southern. The basketball rivalry between these two teams is much stronger than on the gridiron. These in-state rivals have met 62 times with Georgia State getting the better of the two in their most recent matchup, a 79-75 win in 2021. The other matchup was postponed due to COVID-19 exposure within the Eagles' program.
Georgia Southern Eagles Men's Basketball
Georgia Southern competes in the Sun Belt Conference where its basketball success came in the late 1980s, early 1990s. That's where the Eagles won four regular-season championships including back-to-back years in 1988-89. In three NCAA Tournament appearances, Georgia Southern has not won. The Eagles play their home games at Hanner Fieldhouse in Statesboro and are led by former Texas Tech assistant and first-year head coach Brian Burg.
Georgia Southern Eagles Rivalry: vs. Georgia State. Though the Panthers may have gotten the better of the Eagles in 2020's matchup, it was Georgia Southern who knocked out Georgia State in 2019's Sun Belt Conference tournament before COVID-19 would put an end to any hope at postseason play. The Eagles hold a 38-24 all-time series lead over the Panthers.
Mercer Bears Men's Basketball
Mercer basketball does not have a ton of past success, but no one can forget the Round of 64 upset over No. 3-seeded Duke in the 2014 NCAA Tournament. Since moving to Division I, the Bears have made three NCAA Tournaments and won the 2012 CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament. They are three-time Atlantic Sun regular season and conference tournament champions, their latest coming in that 2014 season — the last year before the Bears moved to the Southern Conference. Mercer is coached by former Purdue assistant Greg Gary and plays its home games at Hawkins Arena in Macon.
Mercer Bears Rivalry: vs. Kennesaw State. Ever since the Owls joined the ASUN back in 2005, these in-state rivals have played annually outside of the 2018-19 season. They started as conference rivals but since Mercer's departure for the SoCon, the two teams have managed to continually schedule a yearly matchup. It's been a one-sided affair with Mercer leading the all-time series 17-5.
Kennesaw State Owls Men's Basketball
Since joining the Atlanta Sun Conference at the Division I level in 2005, Kennesaw State basketball has struggled. The Owls have yet to finish a season above .500 and finished the 2019 season 1-28. But at the Division II level, Kennesaw State found success making three straight DII NCAA Tournament appearances from 2003-05 — right before joining the ASUN — even taking home a championship in 2004. The Owls play their home games at the KSU Convocation Center in Kennesaw and are coached by Amir Abdur-Rahim.
Kennesaw State Owls Rivalry: vs. Mercer Bears. These two teams have had their fair share of close affairs over the years. The height of this rivalry came when the two competed twice a year in the ASUN, but an annual matchup has kept these games competitive.
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Georgia has a few notable events that extend beyond its in-state teams for sports fans and bettors alike to enjoy, including:
Unlike the three other major championships in golf, The Masters is held at Augusta National Golf Club every year. The Masters, the smallest field of the major championships, was established in 1934. The winner of the tournament is awarded the famed green jacket each year. In 2020, the Masters Tournament was delayed due to COVID-19 and held in November without fans. Dustin Johnson eventually won his first-ever Masters, setting a course record of 20 under par and a total of 268, two strokes better than Tiger Woods and Jordan Spieth. This year's Masters is set to take place April 8-11.
The SEC Championship has been hosted annually in Atlanta since 1992 and has been held at Mercedes-Benz Stadium since its opening in 2017. The game is sponsored by Dr. Pepper and is typically held on the first Saturday in December. Alabama won the 2020 championship with a 52-46 win over Florida en route to an undefeated season.
This annual bowl game often consists of two teams that fell just shy of the College Football Playoffs. Every third year, however, it serves as one of the semifinal matchups in the CFP. The Peach Bowl was added as a New Year's Six Bowl back in 2014 and is sponsored by Chick-fil-A (often referred to as the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl). Georgia took home the 2020-21 Peach Bowl, defeating Cincinnati, 24-21.
Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500
This professional men's tennis tournament has been played annually around July or August in Atlanta since 2010. It is part of the US Open Series and is played on outdoor hard courts. Known as the Truist Atlanta Open, this tournament was postponed in 2020 due to COVID-19. The last singles winner was Alex de Minaur and the winning doubles team was Dominic Inglot and Austin Krajicek.
More Reading on Georgia
Additional Local Sports News
To supplement Action, you can find local sports news coverage at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.