In this first few months of post-PASPA NJ sports betting, each sports season will bring a series of firsts with it.
Since the NCAA men’s basketball season tipped off this week, a reminder about the sports betting options in New Jersey seems in order.
Where to bet on NCAA basketball in New Jersey
The short answer about where to bet sports in New Jersey is, quite simply, everywhere. Players with mobile devices (which is almost everyone, at this point) can place wagers on sports anywhere inside the state.
Incredibly, there are eight online sportsbooks in the Garden State. All eight have opened for wagering in just two short months. They are (in order of launch date):
- DraftKings Sportsbook
- SugarHouse Sportsbook
- William Hill
- 888 Sport
- BetStars NJ
The NJ Division of Gaming Enforcement oversees the operation of all eight sites. Since the DGE is one of the more capable gaming authorities, players can rest easy about the security and integrity of all eight sites.
However, some bettors may simply prefer to place wagers in-person. In that case, New Jersey has nine land-based sportsbooks to offer. They are (in order of launch date):
- Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa
- Monmouth Park Racetrack
- Ocean Resort
- FanDuel Sportsbook at Meadowlands Racetrack
- Golden Nugget
Obviously, most of these locations are situated in Atlantic City.
However, New Jersey residents in the northern part of the state and residents of the New York City metropolitan area can also make use of the two racetracks with active sportsbooks.
The sky is (almost) the limit on betting options
College basketball fans in New Jersey may be excited about the possibilities to bet on their favorite sport. However, New Jersey has some specific rules about what types of bets are allowed.
The most notable and relevant of these rules pertains to New Jersey-based colleges and universities. New Jersey state gaming regulations forbid wagering on any sporting event featuring a collegiate team that resides in the Garden State.
Unfortunately, that means that fans of schools such as Rutgers, Seton Hall, and Princeton will be unable to wager on their teams’ basketball squad. Whether that rule takes all the fun out of betting for some players remains to be seen.
Bettors without loyalty to in-state schools may still find themselves out of luck. No sports bettor may wager on collegiate contests that take place within the state’s borders either.
So, games that do not feature a New Jersey school are still ineligible for wagering. Bettors need to take care if their team plays a neutral site contest inside the state lines.
Thankfully, none of this year’s NCAA tournament sites aka March Madness are in New Jersey. Otherwise, there might be handfuls of hair all over the floors of NJ sportsbooks.
NCAA teams to watch this season
Predicting which teams will have successful sports seasons is a difficult proposition in any sport.
Predicting college basketball success is even more challenging since teams play a wider range of lesser-known opponents. However, there are a few teams that stand out as attention-worthy in the early part of the season.
The Jayhawks never go very long without fielding a strong team. This year’s team is no exception and is anchored by 7-foot-1 center Udoka Azubuike.
Kansas is hoping to return to the Final Four for the second straight season. Last year’s effort ended on a sour note — the team lost in the national semifinal to eventual champion Villanova.
No doubt the Jayhawks are hungry to return and get over the hump this year. A big season might also mean an NBA position for head coach Bill Self, so look for the coach to whip his players into a frenzy each game.
Duke’s almost-perennial success makes the team an easy one to hate.
Like many teams that seem to combine winning with a perception of bourgeois swagger, the Blue Devils tend to bring out the bile in their opponents.
However, this year’s edition looks to bring both talent and youth to the court. Duke’s first game of the season saw them routing fellow top-10 team Kentucky.
Nevada has a long history in the shadow of its Las Vegas branch.
The Wolfpack have watched UNLV reach great heights in the college basketball world, especially when the Runnin’ Rebels won the championship in 1990.
This year will mark a turn of the tables for the team in Reno. The team returns three of its key starters, Jordan Caroline and the Martin twins. It also has added five-star recruit Jordan Brown, who will throw his 6-foot-11 frame into the fray.
Given the team’s recent success and a favorable schedule, the Wolfpack’s path to the NCAA tournament should be one of the smoothest of any contender.
From that point, anything can happen.
A word about NJ online sportsbook promotions
Finally, bettors in New Jersey need to keep their eyes open for college basketball promotions at NJ online sportsbooks and sports betting apps.
NJ gambling sites are well-known for promos and deals with bonus cash.
A quick check this morning did not yield any results, but the season is quite early.
Promotions will become more likely as the season progresses, particularly near the end of the year as March Madness looms.
For what it’s worth, FanDuel Sportsbook and BetStars NJ are the most reliable sources for online sports betting promotions, but that doesn’t mean the other sites won’t have offers.
In the meantime, players should try as many sportsbooks in the Garden State as they can. The most important thing is to find one that makes them most comfortable.
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