Nevada Sets Super Bowl Betting Record

Photo by Jim K. Decker

Photo by Jim K. Decker

While the city of Seattle was busy Monday planning a parade for their Super Bowl champion Seahawks, Nevada’s sportsbooks were doing some celebrating of their own: For the first time in history, the state cleared the elusive $100 million betting barrier—and cleared it by a lot.

According to the Gaming Control Board, the state’s 183 books collected $119.4 million in wagers for Super Bowl XLVIII, shattering the previous record of $98.9 million set last year. This marked the sixth straight year—and the 12th time in the last 14 years—in which there was an increase in the Super Bowl betting handle over the previous year’s game, and the jump of more than $20 million from 2013 to 2014 was the biggest ever.

Even more important as far as the state’s coffers are concerned, Seattle’s 43-8 blowout victory over the Denver Broncos yielded a profit of $19.67 million for the casinos. The “hold” percentage of 16.5 was the largest since February 2005, when the Patriots edged the Eagles 24-21 and the “hold” was 17 percent. The last time bettors got the best of the sportsbooks was in 2008, when the Giants shocked the undefeated Patriots 17-14, costing the casinos more than $2.6 million.