SI Sportsbook and Betway expect to launch in Virginia by April. This is according to Gina Smith, deputy director of Gaming Compliance at the Virginia Lottery. The Virginia Lottery regulates sports betting in the state.
SI Sportsbook is the new version of 888sport, a European company that has rebranded in North America. It comes with a content partnership with the legacy sports media brand Sports Illustrated.
The addition of SI Sportsbook and Betway would mean nine active online and mobile sportsbooks in Virginia. Twelve are allowed by current state law. According to the Virginia Lottery, three more operators are in the review process. The body did not name them.
Unfortunately for the newcomers, they won’t make it in time for the lucrative Super Bowl betting market on Feb. 13 or the NCAA Tournament.
Could Virginia bettors finally be allowed to wager on Cavaliers, Hokies, etc.?
Not that Virginia sports bettors would be allowed to wager on the Cavaliers, Hokies, or Spiders, anyway. Current Virginia law disallows betting on in-state universities. However, a state lawmaker is attempting to change that.
Last week, Del. Schuyler T. VanValkenburg (D, 72nd District) introduced a bill to allow wagering on Virginia colleges. In Virginia, there are 14 in NCAA Division I, alone. The bill could be more acceptable to skeptics or opponents because it doesn’t permit proposition bets.
These wagers are placed on independent events in games rather than the outcome.
Most states that allow betting on in-state college teams have banned props as a means of safeguarding athletes that are potentially susceptible to manipulation or corruption.
New Jersey voters roundly defeated a similar bill in November. Placing bets on colleges and college events held in New Jersey is banned in that state’s constitution.