Tennessee Online Sports Betting Guide
In comparison to many other countries across the world, America has been relatively slow on the uptake of the sports betting revolution but appear to be doing all they can to catch up.
With individual state laws governing many issues across America, sports betting had always been viewed as a taboo subject that was confined to Nevada and a handful of other states.
The growing trend in states legalising sports betting has moved into more traditional American states and Tennessee are also jumping on board the bandwagon.
Tennessee have made history as becoming the first state to legalise online sports betting alone and the absence of in-store betting in the state has allowed the sports betting infrastructure to develop quickly in the Volunteer State.
With no retail betting operations in Tennessee, state governors are taking somewhat of a risk in their attempts to get more people betting on sport, but they have managed to attract a steady stream of online punters thus far.
Headlines have been made by the extortionate tax legislations being placed on sportsbooks in Tennessee and their approach is certainly different but having only been in operation from November 1st, 2020, sports betting in Tennessee is still in its primitive stages.
Legality of Sports Betting in Tennessee
Tennessee have broken the mould somewhat in the sports betting offering they serve up to in-state punters and they could well have set the blueprint for other states moving forward.
In-store physical betting remains illegal in Tennessee across the state and consequently online sports betting is the only medium punters have at their disposal.
The aftermath of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act passed in the summer of 2020 by the US Supreme Court presented the opportunity to Tennessee’s governors to implement an online only sports betting platform and it appears to have captured the imagination of Tennessee’s punters.
Online sports betting launched and became legal on November 1st, 2020 and has continued to grow in notoriety over the corresponding months.
Tennessee has been coined by market experts as the ‘fastest growing sports betting market in America’ and is comfortably surpassing $200 million of sports betting revenue on a monthly basis.
Due to the nature of the online only restrictions in place in the Volunteer State, new players have to adhere to the age and identity verification requirements and like most states across America, punters have to be 21 years of age to place a bet in Tennessee.
Tennessee Online Sports Betting
The online sports betting landscape is the only medium available to punters in Tennessee and consequently, the online sports betting offering offered within the state is a moveable feast.
In February 2021, Tennessee became only the 7th state in the US to surpass $200 million worth of revenue earned in one month and considering sports betting has only been legal in Tennessee since November 2020 – the growth of the sports betting industry in Tennessee has been meteoric.
Whilst Tennessee have been shrewd in their decision to look to offer online only sports betting markets, they have placed some restrictions on punters:
- Inside State Lines – Most states across the US look to protect themselves and punters by introducing the state lines rule. Geolocation technology is used that tracks the whereabouts of players when betting in Tennessee and only those physically inside the state can place an online bet. All online betting companies/casinos will look to track the whereabouts of any given punter before accepting any funds or bets from them. There is no requirement to be a Tennessee resident however to place a bet, meaning visitors to the Volunteer State can open an account and place a bet.
- Stringent Remote Registration – As Tennessee has become the first state to only offer online sports betting, key questions were raised by opponents as to the safety and security of the sports punting within the state. All of the major sportsbooks operating in Tennessee possess state-of-the-art age and identity verification technology to ensure that players are gambling legally online.
The cost associated with becoming an online sportsbook provider in Tennessee is one of the largest in the country, with companies expected to fork out over $100k just to acquire an online sports betting license. Consequently, only the major bookmakers in the US have ventured into the Tennessee sports betting market as yet but with millions of dollars of revenue earned in just a few months, plenty of other sportsbooks are likely to want a piece of the pie in the Volunteer State.
Who can bet on sports in Tennessee?
The rules associated with sports betting in America are interchangeable from state to state and the absence of a national framework for states to follow gives a huge amount of autonomy to the lawmakers in each state.
Tennessee have quickly established themselves as one of the biggest sports betting states in the country and their online-only approach appears to be paying dividends – for punters and sportsbooks alike.
Like most states, punters must be at least 21 years of age to legally place a sports bet in Tennessee and adhering to all of the relevant verification processes with each sportsbook is a pre-requisite for every punter.
The geolocation technology used by betting companies in Tennessee makes it very easy to enforce the state boundary betting rules, with punters having to be situated in the Volunteer State to be able to access the betting markets.
Punters do not however need to be a resident of Tennessee in order to bet there, the regulations work on the physical location of the gambler at the time a bet was placed.
Tennessee Online Betting Sites
Having changed the sports betting landscape with their decision to offer an online-only sports betting platform, Tennessee have some of the biggest sportsbooks in the world providing betting markets in their state.
Presently, there are only three companies operating in Tennessee, with the aforementioned astronomical licensing fees proving a deterrent for some bookmakers but with over $200 million yielded in February 2021 alone, there appears to be plenty of interest in the market.
The below sites are national/international operations and can work independently in Tennessee:
- Fan Duel
- Bet MGM
- Draft Kings
Unlike many other states, there is no legal requirement for sportsbooks to affiliate with local casinos in order to operate in Tennessee and that appears to have loosened the shackles somewhat for the major bookmakers.
The three betting companies offering services in Tennessee are some of the biggest in America and have all developed ‘Tennessee Only’ betting apps to allow people in the Volunteer State to enjoy the plethora of sports betting markets they have at their disposal.
Convenience is key for punters and the essence of being able to be on the move appears of have been encapsulated in Tennessee and consequently the market is booming.
What sports can you bet on in Tennessee?
As a historically conservative state, Tennessee has always enjoyed a strong relationship with sport in America.
With a population of 7 million across the state, Tennessee consistently punch above their weight in American sport and its geographical position in the heart of the south, is very much part of its appeal to sports fans.
Professionally, the Tennessee Titans play out of Nashville and continue to perform consistently in the NFL. Despite being famed for its burgeoning country music scene primarily, Nashville is embracing the sporting revolution too and the Nashville Predators are a Stanley Cup winning NHL team that play their games in the heart of the city.
Nashville Soccer Club have also become part of the MLS, adding to the growing number of soccer teams in the state and whilst 2020 was a tough opening year, they have a platform to build upon in 2021.
A few hundred kilometres away, the Memphis Grizzlies represent the Volunteer State in the NBA with distinction and despite not having the wealth of sporting teams enjoyed by some other states, Tennessee continue to compete at the highest level.
Despite there being no horse-racing tracks in Tennessee, neighbouring Kentucky is one of the biggest horse racing states in America and betting on horse racing in the Volunteer State has become a hugely popular vocation.
Betting staples such as tennis, golf and horse racing can all be accessed through online sports betting operations in Tennessee and emerging sports betting markets such as Esports can also be accessed through Tennessee’s sportsbooks.
What types of sports bet can you place in Tennessee?
With Tennessee offering an online only sports betting platform, punters can access a multitude of sports bets and markets with ease.
Whilst political and entertainment betting isn’t allowed in Tennessee, all sports betting markets are available – allowing punters to make bespoke bets across their chosen sports.
Straight win bets continue to be the most popular gambling medium in Tennessee, with packed fixture lists presenting the opportunity to win big.
Accumulator betting has become big business across America and Tennessee have latched on to that growing trend, with long lists available to punters across a range of sports.
High-school sports betting is prohibited in Tennessee, but college sports can be punted on, with Moneyline bets, parlays and teasers remaining as popular as ever.
Online only betting also presents a plethora of in-play sports betting opportunities to punters and the growth of the sports betting market in Tennessee is showing no signs of slowing.
Combining his sports coaching career with freelance journalism, Sam is a sports betting writer for various online publications. He is looking to develop both his respective coaching and writing careers, whilst incorporating his other huge passion – travelling the world.
Sam currently lives and works in Milan, Italy and playing/following/writing about cricket, football (soccer), tennis, formula 1 and golf continue to take up much of his spare time.