Super Bowl LVIII provides growth for Kansas sports betting handle

Kansas Sports Betting
Image: Kovop / Shutterstock

The Kansas Lottery reported a year-over-year uptick in sports betting handle amid a neighboring NFL franchise capturing another Super Bowl title.

The Sunflower State reported a $203 million total sports betting handle in February 2024, up from $194 million for the same month last year. Kansas posted the results as the Kansas City Chiefs, who play in neighboring Missouri, won Super Bowl LVIII on Feb. 11. The state has benefited from Missouri residents who are unable to legally wager due to state laws.

Kansas online operators accepted $193 million worth of wagers throughout February.

Despite the year-over-year handle growth, Kansas took a step back compared to January’s results, which saw the state report a $239 million handle. The state’s handle in January marked a 15.3% increase compared to last month. In January, the Sunflower State saw its six operators benefit from the NFL playoffs and NBA regular season coinciding.

Sports betting revenue in Kansas

In February 2024, Kansas reported a substantial uptick in revenue compared to the same period last year.

Last month, operators in the Sunflower State combined for $3 million in online and retail revenue, up from $35,916 in February 2023. However, last month’s results declined from $14.3 million in total revenue in January, which delivered $1.4 million to the state.

Kansas operators would suffer heavy losses following the Chief’s 25-22 win over the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl LVIII. Sportsbooks across the state accepted $24.7 million worth of wagers but would report a $14.5 million loss in gross revenue for a -58.6% win rate.

DraftKings emerges as top operator in Kansas

The sportsbook finished February with the highest online handle at $87.6 million, which is up from the $74 million in online wagers accepted during the same month last year.

DraftKings, which partners with Boot Hill Casino, generated $1.9 million in online revenue in February with a state share that closed at $196,548. By comparison, the operator failed to generate any revenue and a state share from sports wagering in February 2023. DraftKings accepted $612,308 in retail wagers in February 2024, up 71% year-over-year.

That same month, FanDuel reported the second-highest online handle at $58.5 million, which was down from February 2023’s $69.9 million handle. FanDuel, which partners with Kansas Star Casino, saw online revenue reach $885,938 in February 2024 with a $88,594 state share. In February 2023, it posted $11,342 in online revenue and a $1,134 state share.

BetMGM rounded out the top three operators in Kansas in terms of handle. The joint venture between Entain and MGM Resorts reported a $20 million February handle, which generated no revenue or state share. In February 2023, the sportsbook’s handle closed at $18.9 million.

The Kansas Crossing Casino partner also failed to generate revenue during that month.

ESPN Bet further solidifies a retail presence

ESPN Bet, which is owned by PENN Entertainment, entered the sports betting market in November 2023 following a rebrand from Barstool Sportsbook. ESPN Bet emerged as Kansas’ top retail sportsbook with $6.5 million in accepted wagers in February.

In February 2023, Barstool reported a $6 million retail handle.

ESPN Bet, which partners with Hollywood Casino at Kansas Speedway, was far ahead of the next closest retail operator, FanDuel, which reported a $1.2 million handle last month.

In online wagering, ESPN Bet posted a $14.6 million handle in February compared to Barstool’s $10.9 million handle for the same month last year. Both operators failed to generate online or retail revenue.