Colorado sports bettors came out in droves to start 2022, making a record $573.7 million in wagers in January, according to figures released Tuesday by the state’s Department of Revenue.
The handle figure is the largest of any state conducting sports betting in the post-PASPA era excluding the “Big 5” of New Jersey, Nevada, Illinois, Pennsylvania, and recent addition New York. Colorado’s January handle blew past the previous state standard of $491.5 million established in October.
Colorado is the seventh state to post at least $500 million handle in January, and the national total for wagers in the month soared past the $8 billion mark for the first time in U.S. regulated betting history.
The house recorded a win rate of just over 6% to claim more than $34.6 million in gross gaming revenue. That total was the second highest of the 21 months of legal Colorado wagering, slotting behind the $36.8 million claimed in November.
Nearly two-thirds of that gross revenue total, however, went right back to bettors in the form of promotional credits and deductions totaling just shy of $23 million. That left close to $11.7 million in net sports betting proceeds eligible to be taxed. Operators have reported more than 60% of the $360.6 million in all-time gross revenue as promotional credits and deductions.
Colorado’s state coffers received more than $1.4 million in tax receipts, raising the overall total since launch in May 2020 to more than $16.1 million.
College football provides large revenue boost
HOLY NIKOLA JOKIC WTF?! 🤯pic.twitter.com/08zbw6COp4
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) February 28, 2022
While parlays accounted for the single largest source of revenue in January with sportsbooks keeping nearly $13.3 million from almost $91 million in wagers, college football generated big revenue as well with close to $5.6 million. Operators posted a robust 35% hold on the $16 million wagered as Georgia’s win over Alabama in the championship game proved a favorable result for Centennial State books.
Unsurprisingly, revenue from NFL wagering paced sport-specific numbers as operators claimed more than $6.7 million from $144 million worth of bets. Colorado bettors generated $717.8 million in NFL handle from September through January in the first season with the league backing legal wagering, more than double the $358.2 million for the same period for the 2020 season.
There was a record $163.6 million wagered on the NBA in January as MVP candidate Nikola Jokic and the Denver Nuggets continued to be a popular draw. The Avalanche, who lead the NHL with 82 points, sparked a notable bump in hockey wagering, which rose 70% from December to $24.7 million in January. Despite the increased handle, operators actually collected less revenue compared to December, finishing with a hold of 3.3% to claim $805,712.
There was also a spike in tennis wagering, with the Australian Open contributing to a record single-month handle that totaled just short of $20 million. While table tennis again made the top 10 for handle, the niche specialty of Colorado saw a 17.2% dip in wagers to $7.6 million in January versus $9.2 million in December.
Bettors came out nearly $100,000 ahead on the $24.8 million handle represented in the catch-all “other” category, and close to $12,000 ahead on more than $2.1 million worth of MMA wagers.