Americans will bet a total of $9.2 billion on March Madness brackets, pools and contests this year, according to estimates released Monday by the American Gaming Association. Tens of millions of people are expected to wager on this year’s NCAA basketball tournament.
2016 March Madness
The $9.2 billion haul is an increase of about $200 million compared to bets placed on last year’s tournament, the AGA said. The group expects just $262 million in legal wagers, with the rest of the bets placed through informal pools, bookies and offshore websites.
“Americans’ passion for betting fuels the unmatched popularity of March Madness,” AGA President and CEO Geoff Freeman said in a statement. “Betting increasingly drives sports fans – and even casual observers – to invest in the tournament, offering further evidence that sports betting is the new national pastime.”