Mississippi Sets Monthly Sports Betting Record in January

Mississippi Sets Monthly Sports Betting Record in January

January was an ideal start to the year for Mississippi sports betting.

But what should be the next logical step — a robust mobile sports betting market — has instead taken a back step.

Mississippi sports betting handle broke a record in the first month of 2021. The total handle of $67.7 million was up 22.4% from December’s total of $55.3 million and about $6.5 million ahead of the $61.2 million from October 2020, which had been the state record.

In a year-over-year comparison, the month was 49.8% higher than January 2020’s handle of $45.2 million, according to figures from the Mississippi Gaming Commission.

Mississippi Sports Betting, January vs December

Betting handle Revenue
January $67.708M $9.114M
December $55.299M $7.763M
Change Up 22.4% Up 17.4%

And thanks to a strong 13.46% win rate, Mississippi also raked in $9.1 million in sports betting revenue. That was up 17.4% from December ($7.8 million) and was the second-best in state history, trailing only the $12.3 million from October 2019.

The revenue was nearly double that from 12 months earlier — up 96.5% from $4.6 million in January 2020.

Mississippi Year-Over-Year Sports Betting

Betting handle Revenue
January 2021 $67.708M $9.114M
January 2020 $45.190M $4.639M
Change Up 49.8% Up 96.5%

Mississippi Mobile Sports Betting Stalls

One factor to weigh when considering the Magnolia State’s sports betting is a lack of a true mobile option. Customers must physically be at a Mississippi casino to register an online bet in the state.

It does not look like that will change anytime soon.

A bid to expand mobile sports betting was quickly dashed when two bills in the Mississippi State Senate, SB 2732 and SB 2396, didn’t even get to a full vote in this legislative session. Both bills died in committee on Feb. 2.

So while neighboring Tennessee boasted a whopping $180.9 million in handle in December, just its second full month as the nation’s first all-mobile sports betting market, Mississippi must be content with much smaller gains.

Those gains are encouraging for the state’s land-based and riverboat casinos. Plus, Tennessee has the advantages of more than twice the population (nearly 7 million compared to nearly 3 million for Mississippi) and teams in the NFL, NBA, NHL and MLS.

Still, Mississippi sports betting had more than two years headstart on Tennessee and has recent gambling tradition — unlike Tennessee, which still has no casinos — yet Tennessee already has more than twice Mississippi’s sports betting handle even before The Volunteer State reports its January figures. As Tennessee’s market matures, grows in acceptance and adds more online sports betting operators, that gap is going to grow much wider.

Mississippi Gaming Results Mixed

The Mississippi gaming market had mixed results in January.

The total slots drop was $2.033 billion, up 12.6% from December ($1.806 billion) and up 11.5% from January 2020 ($1.823 million). Slots revenue for the month was nearly $154 million.

The table games drop also grew in a month-to-month comparison, rising 8% from $142 million in December to $153.4 million in January. However, that was down 5.1% from January 2020, when Mississippi table games drew $161.7 million in handle. January table games revenue in the state was $28.6 million.