As the world of sports betting expands, the laws and options vary widely from state to state. This is especially true when you look at neighbors North Carolina and Virginia. Both have dipped their toes into the sports betting pool, but with some key differences that make North Carolina a more attractive option for many, especially when it comes to betting on college games.

North Carolina’s Edge: College Betting

One big win for North Carolina is that it lets you bet on college games played within the state. Virginia, on the other hand, does not. Since 2021, Virginia has opened its doors to both retail and mobile sports betting, boasting 16 sportsbooks and three land-based casinos. Despite this, the state’s laws have a notable gap: You can’t bet on your favorite Virginia college teams. Efforts are underway to change this, with Sen. Schuyler VanValkenburg leading the charge for amendment. But as of now, changes won’t come into effect this year, making North Carolina the go-to for Virginians wanting to support their home teams during events like March Madness.

The Struggle in Virginia

Sen. VanValkenburg hasn’t given up, having introduced Senate Bill 124 in an attempt to allow bets on in-state college sports, barring proposition betting. Despite a similar effort failing in 2022, the bill now waits, its fate postponed to 2025. Until then, Virginians keen on betting on college teams must look beyond their state’s borders.

The Impact on Virginia Bettors

With March Madness around the corner, Virginia’s restrictions mean missed opportunities for local fans. Betting adds an extra layer of excitement to watching games, but without legal options for in-state college games, fans either miss out or turn to illegal, unlicensed platforms. It’s a loss not just for fans but potentially for the state’s legal betting industry too.

Virginia Teams Stir Hopes

Despite the legal limitations, Virginia’s college teams are not to be underestimated. The University of Virginia men’s basketball team, for example, secured a 10-seed in the NCAA Tournament after a strong performance in the ACC tournament. James Madison University, boasting a remarkable 31-3 record, also has high hopes as a 12-seed. On the women’s side, Virginia Tech, led by the thrice-named ACC player of the year Elizabeth Kitley, enters as a #4 seed. Norfolk State and Richmond also carry Virginia’s banner into the women’s tournament, facing tough first-round matchups against Stanford and Duke, respectively.

North Carolina’s Welcoming Arms

For Virginians looking to bet on these promising teams, North Carolina offers a welcoming alternative. The launch of North Carolina sports betting, including online options, has been a game-changer. Bettors now have access to North Carolina sports betting apps, complete with enticing sportsbook promos for new users. Among these is the BetMGM bonus code, offering special deals for newcomers eager to place their bets.

North Carolina’s inclusive approach to college sports betting, combined with the allure of promotional offers, makes it an attractive destination for Virginia bettors during the college sports season. The contrast between the two states’ laws highlights the evolving landscape of sports betting in America, with fans and bettors alike navigating the complexities of state-specific regulations. For now, North Carolina stands out as a beacon for those looking to legally support their favorite college teams through betting, offering both convenience and a robust selection of betting options.

✅ Fact Checked on March 28, 2024 by Oliver