Border a Busy Place on Opening Weekend of Kansas Sports Betting

Border a Busy Place on Opening Weekend of Kansas Sports Betting
By Christopher Boan
Fact Checked by Michael Peters

It was an opening weekend to remember for the six Kansas sportsbooks that participated in last Thursday’s “soft launch” in the state.

The six — Kansas BetMGM, Caesars Sportsbook, DraftKings Sportsbook, FanDuel Sportsbook, PointsBet and Barstool Sportsbook — raked in north of 2.3 million geolocation checks between Thursday and Sunday, according to geolocation firm GeoComply.

In total, the opening weekend for Kansas sports betting apps showed 136,000 unique devices and 132,000 unique customers used one of the six operators during the opening weekend, GeoComply representatives told BetKansas.com.

Another way to describe how popular Kansas’ sports betting kickoff was is that the roughly 1.975 million sportsbook account usernames created during the opening weekend represented a higher percentage of the state’s adult population (6.7%) than the launches in New York (3.3%) and Louisiana (3.6%).

Here’s what else stood out from Kansas’ opening weekend of legalized sports betting, according to the folks at GeoComply and operators in the marketplace.

Missouri Residents Try to Get in On Kansas Action

Another figure that stands out from GeoComply’s opening weekend report in Kansas is the sheer volume of attempted wagers by residents in Missouri.

Nearly 80,000 attempts to access the Kansas sports betting network by 12,000 unique sportsbook customers in Missouri were detected over the weekend.

Unsurprisingly, the two most popular Kansas markets by geolocation checks were Overland Park and Kansas City, Kan., thanks in large part to their location along the Kansas-Missouri line.

Both cities registered more than 200,000 geolocation checks, GeoComply said, beating out Wichita, Olathe and Lawrence.

Missouri failed to pass a sports betting bill during its regular 2022 state legislative session, and lawmakers in the state took note of what was happening in Kansas over the weekend.

“No, I’m not good with it,” said Missouri State Senator Caleb Rowden on Twitter when asked about wagering dollars leaving the state for Kansas. “And it will be a priority of mine to rectify it in our upcoming regular session.”

Aubrey Smethurst, who serves as GeoComply’s director of marketing and communications, said the company’s relationship with the six Kansas sportsbooks allows it to paint a picture of the market in totality.

“GeoComply is the leading provider of geolocation and cybersecurity services for the U.S. sports betting industry,” Smethurst said in an email to BetKansas.com. “We support 100% of the mobile sportsbooks in Kansas and therefore our statistics provide a reliable overview and insight into the state of the industry.”

Bets Being Placed at KU, KSU Games

Two of the biggest sports betting hotspots in Kansas during the past weekend were in the college towns of Manhattan and Lawrence. 

Fans of Kansas State led the way before, during, and after the team’s 34-0 shellacking of South Dakota, with 3,500 geolocation transactions from Bill Snyder Family Stadium on Saturday.

That figure represented nearly a quarter of the transactions in the Little Apple for Saturday. The 1,500 unique player accounts that checked in from the stadium represented 42% of all accounts in the town that day, according to GeoComply.

Lawrence had similar numbers, with 1,400 geolocation transactions and 600 unique player accounts registered from David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium during the Jayhawks’ Friday night romp over Tennessee Tech.

The KU figures represent 12% of all transactions registered and 17% of all unique player accounts in Lawrence on Friday, the firm said.

With college football in full swing and the NFL opening this week, BetKansas.com is the place to be for the top Kansas betting promos.

How the Opening Weekend Went for Operators

Among the operators that launched Thursday was FanDuel Sportsbook Kansas, which has already seen outsized interest from its customer base in Kansas, according to Kevin Hennessy, who serves as director of publicity for the operator.

According to Hennessy, the most popular events for FanDuel’s Kansas sports betting customers were Thursday’s West Virginia-Pittsburgh college football game, Friday’s Kansas-Tennessee Tech contest, the promo on Saturday’s Notre Dame-Ohio State contest, and Sunday’s Florida State-LSU game.

So far, college football has been the most popular sport to wager on for FanDuel Sportsbook customers, followed by baseball, tennis and soccer.

The New York-based operator has a grand opening planned for its Kansas Star Casino retail facility in Mulvane at 10 a.m. Central time Thursday, with former Kansas State and Green Bay Packers wideout Jordy Nelson placing the ceremonial first bet.

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Contributors

Christopher Boan is a lead writer at BetKansas.com specializing in covering state issues. He covered sports and sports betting in Arizona for more than seven years.

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