Penn National Gaming Goes Five For Five With Mississippi Casino Sports Betting

Penn National Gaming will offer sports betting in five of its Mississippi casinos this month.

That includes:

  • Hollywood Casino Gulf Coast
  • Boomtown Casino Biloxi
  •  Hollywood Casino Tunica
  •  1st Jackpot Casino Tunica
  •  Resorts Casino Tunica

According to Penn National’s announcement Aug. 16, the first two on this list expect to provide sports betting on Aug. 17, while the last three will do so Aug. 24.

“Every time I step on the gaming floor a customer approaches me about sports betting,” said Justin Carter, general manager of Penn National’s properties in Tunica, in a release. “With the extreme passion in the region around sports, and college athletics in particular, we look forward to becoming a destination for fans in northern Mississippi, Memphis and Arkansas.”

Timothy J. Wilmott, chief executive officer of Penn National, said that the company is thrilled to offer sports betting in its casinos and that the excitement has only ramped up since the repeal of the federal ban in May.

Opening sportsbooks, kiosks outside Nevada

Penn National offers sportsbooks at Hollywood Casino in Bay St. Louis, Boomtown Casino in Biloxi, 1st Jackpot Casino and Hollywood Casino Tunica. Resorts Casino in Tunica will allow guests to place sports wagers using kiosks in the near future.

These sportsbook operations are the first outside Nevada for Penn National; the company owns the Tropicana and M Resort in Las Vegas. With this investment, Mississippi now has ten sports betting operators since casinos entered the game at the start of the month, reported Legal Sports Report.

“I can’t wait to welcome fans from across the southeast this fall,” said Mike Galle, general manager at Hollywood Casino Gulf Coast. “Whether it’s for big SEC football games on Saturday or the New Orleans games on Sunday, we expect to provide a great venue for customers to enjoy betting on sports and the other great amenities at Hollywood Casino.”

MGM’s properties Beau Rivage and Gold Strike were the first in the market. David Tsai, president and chief operating officer of Gold Strike, told Mississippi Today about the launch:

“The handle (amount of money bet) has been lower than we expect long-term,” Tsai said to Mississippi Today. “The better gauge for long-term volumes will be once football season kicks off in September. That said, our handle and betting volumes already exceed that in many Vegas casinos. We are seeing hundreds of guests coming on-property to place sports wagers in our new sports book.”

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Mississippi distinctions

Mississippi does not allow sports wagers outside the physical casino. So, while bettors can bet online or on mobile devices, they are only allowed to do so on casino properties.

Even so, Mississippi’s still in a good place; the closest state offering sports betting is West Virginia. West Virginia is still a little under two weeks from launch.

Mississippi will tax sports betting revenue at a rate of 12 percent. Eight percent goes to the state, with four percent to local governments.

Penn National stays busy

Penn National has been active in other states lately. The casino officially submitted the first Pennsylvania sports betting application Aug. 17. The license cost the casino $10 million, but now they can offer live and online sports betting in PA.

Katie Callahan

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Katie Callahan is a freelance journalist, blogger and copywriter who covers everything from poker, business, education and politics to construction, startups and cybersecurity.