Meet The Casinos, Franchises and Players Who Want In On Ohio Sports Betting

Written By Darren Cooper on July 18, 2022 - Last Updated on July 26, 2022
Ohio sports betting applicants run the gamut

Multiple Ohio casinos including the JACK in Cleveland, the Hard Rock in Cincinnati, and Hollywood Casino in Columbus are looking for a stake in the Ohio sports betting market, one of the biggest in the US online gambling and US gambling industries.

Final applications came in with a Friday rush to the Ohio Casino Control Commission for Type A, Type B, and Type C sports betting licenses. Ohio sports betting is set to begin on Jan. 1, 2023.

Estimates vary, but the Ohio Legislative Service Commission said in May that sports betting could create $24 million in tax revenue the first year it goes live.

Institutions, teams, and businesses can still apply for a license. However, the OCC will not guarantee them the ability to go live on New Years’ Day. Applications had to be in by Friday for that guarantee.

The OCC made the list public late Friday afternoon. There were 22 applicants for Type A sports betting licenses (online sports betting) 18 came in last week, including eight professional sports franchises and one golf course.

There’s also a boarding school and a fireworks dealer

Ohio sports betting license applicants run the gamut

There were 24 Type B license applicants (retail sportsbooks). Type C licenses are for kiosks operator licenses in the state. There are only four businesses to apply for a Type C at this point. Let’s break down all the Type A & B applicants and what they bring to the table:

JACK Cleveland Casino & JACK Thistledown Racino

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: Both JACKs will partner with PlayUp Interactive for its sports betting online platform. The JACK in Cleveland opened in 2012 as the Horseshoe Cleveland. Adding legal sports betting was a natural fit to its offerings.

HOF Village Newco

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: This is the real estate development company that is working on the site in and around the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton. It plans to have a retail sportsbook as part of its entertainment district.

Cincinnati Bengals

Licenses applied for: A

The Deal: The Bengals made news last week when they applied for an online sports betting license and then announced a partnership with Betfred Sports, a company based in the United Kingdom. Ohio will be the seventh state that Betfred will have a presence in.

Northfield Park Associates

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: Don’t be fooled by the weird official business name. This is MGM Northfield Park, a racino outside of Cleveland. It’s operated by MGM.

Scioto Downs

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: If Northfield Park is BetMGM, this is your Caesars connection for Ohio. This is a racino in Columbus.

Hard Rock Casino Cincinnati

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: This land-based casino in southern Cincinnati is a quick ride from the Kentucky border. It will partner with Seminole Hard Rock for its sports betting offerings.

Cleveland Browns Football Company

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: Back in April, the Browns had announced a partnership with Bally’s Interactive as the official sports betting partner. Bally’s will operate the sportsbook at the Browns’ home stadium, FirstEnergy Stadium.

COLHOC Columbus Blue Jackets

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: The Blue Jackets are a National Hockey League franchise. They waited until the last minute to apply for a license, but it comes as no surprise. The Blue Jackets selected Tipico as their operating partner.

Crew SC Stadium Company

Licenses applied for: A

The deal: One of the original teams in Major League Soccer, the Crew date back to 1994. In January, way before any Ohio application process started, the Crew joined Tipico as official sports betting partner.

Muirfield Village Golf Club

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: A golf club, really? It’s true. This is the home of The Memorial Tournament, and this course was designed and still run by favorite Ohio son Jack Nicklaus. It will work with Parx Interactive as its sports betting partner.

The Cincinnati Reds

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: Major League Baseball’s oldest franchise will venture into the world of sports betting through Underdog Sports Wagering. That company, based in Brooklyn, is better known for its online fantasy sports platform.

Cavaliers Operating Company

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: Ohio’s NBA franchise hopes to launch sports betting through Fubo Gaming for online players. The franchise announced a deal for a Caesars-run sportsbook at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse in February

Hollywood Casino Columbus

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: This casino bills itself as the area’s sole Vegas-style casino with over 1,900 slots and 34 live poker tables. This is the Barstool Sportsbook home if its application is approved.

Cleveland Guardians

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: The Major League Club changed its name from Indians before the season started. This was a bit of a surprise because the franchise hadn’t made public its online partner, but it’s listed as bet365 on its application.

Hollywood Dayton Raceway

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: This is a racino with nearly 1,000 video lottery terminals and seasonal harness racing in Dayton. They did not submit a service provider for their Type A application but submitted Penn Sports Interactive (Barstool) as their management services provider for their Type B.

PNK Belterra Park

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: Belterra Park, formerly known as River Downs, is a racino just on the edge of Cincinnati (again, real close to Kentucky). It did not list a service provider for either license type.

Hollywood Casino Toledo

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: A small-ish casino in Toledo with 227 slot machines and an outdoor gaming terrace, they have partnered with Crown Ohio/DraftKings for its sports betting needs.

Hollywood Gaming Mahoning Valley

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: This is the home of the Mahoning Valley Race Course for thoroughbred racing from October through April. They will join with PointsBet Ohio for sports betting in the Buckeye State.

Ravencrest Partners LLC

Licenses applied for: B

The deal: This is a big mystery applicant. Ravencrest looks like a property company in Northeast Ohio. It did not list an operator, but it could just be a placeholder for someone else.

FC Cincinnati

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: FC Cincinnati is a Major League Soccer franchise that started in 2016. On the same day it applied for licenses, it announced a deal with SuperBook Sports to become its official betting partner. SuperBook is best known for its flagship location in Las Vegas.

Geneva Sports LLC

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: Geneva Sports is the business behind the SPIRE Institute, a college prep school and a massive fitness center. Maybe it wants a retail sportsbook on the grounds? It announced a partnership with Out The Gate to handle sports betting.


Licenses applied for: B

The deal: This is the company behind the Harry Buffalo restaurant chain with six locations in Ohio. They will work with PointsBet Ohio to ostensibly put retail sportsbooks in their restaurants.

Phantom Fireworks

Licenses applied for: B

The deal: This is not a misprint. This is a company with stores throughout America that sells fireworks. What they would do with a sportsbook on site is a fun thought.

S&S Realty

Licenses applied for: B

The deal: S&S Realty is the company behind the Cedar Downs Off Track Betting parlor which is now seeking to add a sportsbook. BetMGM is listed as the service provider.

Miami Valley Gaming and Racing LLC.

Licenses applied for: A & B

The deal: A harness racing spot and casino in Warren County with seasonal live racing five days a week. It did not list a management partner for either type of license.

Photo by Greg Widmeyer /
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Darren Cooper

Darren Cooper is a staff writer for PlayUSA. He’s been a sports writer in the Northeast since 1998 and developed a keen interest in covering the gaming, casino and sports betting industry and has written for multiple additional Play state sites. He always bets responsibly although his grandfather did have a secret system for betting on the ponies at the Fair Grounds in New Orleans.

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