Iowa Sports Betting: The Best Iowa Betting Sites for 2020

Sports Betting in Iowa
NCAA Football Legal since May 13, 2019: Further regulations to come in July and August, 2019.
NCAA Baseball Legal since May 13, 2019: Further regulations to come in July and August, 2019.
NCAA Basketball Legal since May 13, 2019: Further regulations to come in July and August, 2019.
USHL Hockey Legal since May 13, 2019: Further regulations to come in July and August, 2019.

Iowa has many gambling options spanning tribal-owned and riverboat casinos, state lotteries and more, though they have always been strictly regulated. Betting on sports, including college games, will soon be possible. Up until recently, the future of sports betting in Iowa was, like many U.S. states, unclear. But with the recent striking down of Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) by the U.S. Supreme Court in May 2018, and a new law signed into effect by Governor Kim Reynolds in May 2019, a host of changes to Iowa’s legal gambling options, including access to online platforms, are coming soon. Visit our Iowa gambling page for more.

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Gambling Laws in Iowa

Though some types of gambling have been legal in Iowa for many years, the recent law passed on May 13, 2019 is a game-changer, which will create many positive changes for the future of sports betting in the state. The newly signed bill will allow new operators to offer sports betting on-site, and online, after paying a $45,000 licensing fee and with a new 6.75 per cent tax on revenue. College sports betting is also permitted, though subject to strict regulation. The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission is the authority which will regulate sports betting from now on. Of course, Iowa is not the only state which thought of such legislations. There are a number of possibilities also in other corners of the US, like for example in sports betting in the state of New Hampshire.

Most Popular Sports in Iowa

Though the Hawkeye State does not boast any professional sports franchises in the NBA or NFL, Iowans are big fans of football, baseball, basketball and hockey. If they aren’t out playing themselves, they can be found supporting their local teams and college games, like those at University of Iowa in Iowa City or Iowa State University in Ames. Here are the most popular sports and resulting betting markets in Iowa:

College Football – Iowa Hawkeyes

Though “Hawkeyes” represents a plethora of sports at University of Iowa, the name really means football — and this team and its rich history are the reason. Started in 1889, the team joined the Western Conference (now the Big Ten) ten years later and has been snapping up wins ever since. It is currently ranked as the 25th of college football programs. It most recently won the Outback Bowl in 2018 under long-time head coach Kirk Ferentz.

Baseball – Iowa Hawkeyes

Representing one of the best college baseball teams in the country, the Iowa Hawkeyes baseball team is part of the elite Big 10 conference. Their games attract huge crowds from across the state and they have in the past gone on to be national champions and push many of their most talented players into MLB teams.

College Basketball – Iowa Hawkeyes

The Iowa Hawkeyes men’s basketball team is a huge draw for college sports fans in Iowa and beyond. Having won eight NIT Tournaments, eight Big Ten Conference championships and the Big Ten tournament, and having played in 26 NCAA Tournaments, this team continues to make Iowa proud. You can catch them next season in the Carver-Hawkeye Arena at University of Iowa.

Cedar Rapids Hockey

Ice Hockey is admittedly not the most popular sport in this state, but the Cedar Rapids has well and truly become the team to beat. Since 1999 they have played their trade in the coveted United States Hockey League, a division that sits just below the NHL and has seen some exceptionally talented players burst through the ranks in recent years. You need only look as far as the great players of the ’90s for evidence of this.

Local History of Sports Betting

Iowa has been fairly open to the gambling industry, with Native American casinos and others opening in the state. Up until recently, sports betting was not allowed on the premises, or online, but that is changing as of the Supreme Court’s ruling against PASPA in 2018 and new legislation in Iowa passed in May 2019.

Iowa Sports Betting History
1983 Racetracks are allowed to apply for licenses, making greyhound and horse racing legal in the state.
1989 Simulcasting is approved, allowing bettors to wager on races not only within Iowa, but in other states as well.
1991 Riverboat casinos start opening in Iowa.
1992 Three Native American casinos open for business.
2019 Gov. Reynolds signs SF 617 into law, effectively legalizing sports betting on licensed premises and online.

Legal Online Sports Betting Age in Iowa

With the introduction of the sports betting law passed in the Iowa legislature in May, 2019, residents 21 years and older will be allowed to wager on sporting events. The betting can take place in Iowa’s casinos. For online sports betting, interested parties must register once in person at a casino in order to prove they are over 21 and begin betting.

  • Sports Betting Age
    The legal sports betting age is 21 in Iowa.
  • Alcohol Age
    The legal drinking age is 21 in Iowa.
  • Marijuana Age
    Iowa residents with qualifying medical conditions and over the age of 18 can apply for a permit to buy cannabis.

A federal ruling in 2006 strictly prohibited any form on online sports betting in the U.S. But after many states rallied against it, notably New Jersey and Delaware, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down PASPA in 2018, paving the way for all states to introduce new sports betting laws. Iowa is part of the wave of states that have recently made sports betting legal, following Montana and Indiana in 2019. As with all states, you must access online betting from within the legal state, and not from states where online betting is prohibited.

Taxes on Your Winnings: Do You Have to Pay Anything?

Though further details on the new law in Iowa are still to come, it is likely that winnings will be taxed. Most European countries implement 5% duty on winnings, no matter the amount, and it is an attractive proposition for states in the U.S.A. as well, since this revenue can go towards government projects. At the moment, it is clear that a 6.75% tax will be charged on revenue earned by the licensed betting premises engaging in sports betting in Iowa, according to local reports.

Upcoming Regulation Changes in Iowa Sports Betting Law

The Iowa sports betting laws are changing due to the recent signing of SF 617. Sports betting will be allowed on licensed premises, including Iowa’s 19 casinos, and through partnered online betting sites. Further regulations, such as on online betting and betting on college games, will be determined in July and August 2019, by the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission.

Sports Betting Guides for Nearby States

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