BLOG | by YouGov Sport

Super Bowl gambling: Who’s putting money down and what are they betting on?

The Super Bowl is the biggest American sporting event of the year – and arguably the biggest betting day in all of US sport, with nearly one in five Americans (19%) planning to place a wager on the big game. YouGov data shows who these gamblers are, their betting methods, and on which aspects of the game they plan to put their money.

Those who plan to place money on the game skew younger and are slightly more likely to be men, but not by a large margin (16% women versus 21% men). Differences in betting intentions between men and women are starker when we look at how they plan to bet.

Our polling data indicates nearly two in three (63%) Super Bowl gamblers will make casual bets with friends or family this year. Women (68%) more likely than men (58%) to make such bets. Overall, more than two in five (45%) will use an online sportsbook, which is the preferred method for men (49% vs. 40% women). Only 15% of plan to use an in-person sportsbook.

For Americans who plan to place money on the game, hunch or feel is the most important factor when choosing how to bet, with about three in ten (29%) saying so. Other factors gamblers say are the most important include the team’s previous results (17%), the odds given (14%), and what team they support (11%).

Without much surprise, most gamblers are betting on some aspect of the game itself (77%), whether it be the outcome, or number of touchdowns by a specific player, for example.

Interestingly, a quarter (25%) plan to put money down on some aspect of the halftime show, which will be headlined by The Weeknd. Prop bets around the show can include what song the artist will play first, or what surprise acts may make an appearance.

Many Americans tune into the big game just to watch the commercials and our polling data shows 14% of Super Bowl gamblers will bet on some aspect of the ads. Common bets include how many commercials will air, or which quarter will broadcast the most commercials.

Sports gambling is getting increasingly popular in the United States after a 2008 Supreme Court decision allowed individual states the decision to legalize sports betting. As of November 2020, 20 states have legalized sports betting. However, the legality remains unclear to many Americans. YouGov data shows nearly half (47%) don’t know whether sports betting is legal in their state, which includes roughly a quarter (23%) of Americans who plan to bet on the Super Bowl.

Methodology: Weighted results are based on a YouGov poll of 1,500 Americans, including 282 adults who plan to place a bet on the Super Bowl. Interviews took place on January 18, 2021, between 1:30 p.m. and 3:28 p.m. The survey was carried out through YouGov Direct. The margin of error is approximately 3.4% for the overall sample.

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