NC Governor Wants Online Sportsbooks Live For March Madness
North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper sat with the Ovies + Giglio podcast to discuss the North Carolina sports betting market. Gov. Cooper wants online sportsbooks in North Carolina to be live in time for the NCAA March Madness Tournament. This launch window is a possibility with the current speed at which the NC Lottery Commission and Sports Betting Committee are moving.
Gov. Cooper’s March Madness North Carolina Sportsbook Launch Is Realistic
Locals are excited about the incoming betting market. Gov. Cooper has explained that the launch process experienced delays as the general assembly adjusted the legislation. This has caused the NC Lottery Commission to “re-do some things,” which is why sports betting is not yet live.
Gov. Cooper is looking for NC sportsbooks to be live for March Madness betting. Looking at the progress made thus far, this is not out of the question. North Carolina has confirmed two sets of rules and has already begun accepting betting operator applications. The deadline for sportsbook applications is Wednesday, Dec. 27.
Lawmakers have 60 days to review and approve applicants. That means regulators could announce approved applicants by mid-February and potentially launch apps in time for the tournament.
“I don’t disagree with you as a fan and somebody who would want to place a bet,” said Cooper. “But you’ve got to make sure that the rules are right, and that everybody is complying with the law, and that the state is getting its right amount of revenue. It’s pretty complicated to make sure that you follow all of the law that the general assembly has put in place.”
North Carolina Sportsbook Partnerships
In order to launch in North Carolina, operators must partner with a local team or venue. Four operators have curated partnerships so far. Those partnerships are listed below:
Confirmed NC Sportsbook Partnerships
- Carolina Hurricanes – Fanatics Sportsbook
- Charlotte Hornets – Bet365
- PGA Tour – FanDuel
- Quail Hollow Club – ESPN BET
These operators are in the best position to launch in North Carolina once a date is confirmed. We will likely see a big-name operator partner with the Panthers shortly as well. With Gov. Cooper aiming for a March launch, the operators above are likely the first set of apps that will be live. Each operator is already active in other markets and has navigated a state launch before.
Time will tell if Gov. Cooper and the state will hit the March Madness wagering timeline.