What Do Indiana And Michigan Sports Betting Have In Common In 2021?
There are now more than 25 US states with some form of legalized sports betting. However, around half of these are still stuck with the limitations of retail-only betting. That means sports fans can only wager while in specific locations, usually a casino or racetrack. In some cases it may even be a sports betting lounge attached to a stadium.
Meanwhile, the other half of these legalized states have gone a crucial step further.
Fully mobile online betting legislation has completely changed the face of the gambling industry in the United States. Two states that have fully embraced this brave new world are Indiana and Michigan. The Hoosier State was one of the first to join the party in 2019 while The Great Lakes State launched in January of 2021.
As well as sharing a border, Indiana and Michigan have other similarities in their rollout of legal sports betting. They both have retail sports betting venues as well as fully online platforms. Bookmakers in both states offer access to pretty much the same betting markets and options. Furthermore, bettors in both states can register on many of the same apps including DraftKings, Caesars Sportsbook, BetMGM, PointsBet and BetRivers.
And now the latest thing Indiana and Michigan have in common: college football teams near the top of the rankings.
College Football Rankings
In the AP Coaches Poll, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish (#6), Michigan State Spartans (#7), and Michigan Wolverines (#8) all sit with a record of 9-1. It’s a slightly different picture in the BCS Selection Committee rankings. There we see Michigan at #6, Michigan State at #7 and Notre Dame sitting at #9.
With just a couple of weeks remaining in the regular season, all three of these teams have a shot at qualifying for the BCS playoffs. For sports fans and sports bettors in both states, it comes down to the last few games of the season.
Options For Michigan Bettors
The path to the BCS appears to be most difficult for the Spartans. On November 21st they will be traveling to Columbus, Ohio for a big showdown against #4 ranked Ohio State. The Buckeyes also have a record of 9-1. Their lone loss came against the then #3 ranked Oregon Ducks. Should the Spartans survive this tough test, their BCS fate would rest on the November 28th game against Penn State (6-4). Earlier this year, Penn State was ranked in the Top 10 for several weeks.
As for the Michigan Wolverines, they too have a date with destiny that goes through the Ohio State Buckeyes. That game is scheduled to be played on November 28th in Ann Arbor. If Michigan win their November 21st game against the Maryland Terrapins (5-5), the game against Ohio State would certainly have BCS ramifications.
Indiana Bettors Backing Bowl Berth
Notre Dame, whose only loss came against now #3 ranked Cincinnati (10-0), has an easier path on paper. They play Virginia Tech and Stanford, both teams sitting with a record of 3-7. The problem the Fighting Irish face is their power rankings could well keep them from landing a spot in the BCS playoffs. Their strength of schedule just looks a little weak.
Still, Indiana sports bettors can assume Notre Dame has a great chance of at least landing a major bowl game.
If all three teams run the table and finish 11-1, the strength of schedule might push the Spartans ahead of the Wolverines in the BCS rankings. However, they would still need one of the top four teams (Georgia, Alabama, Oregon, Cincinnati) to falter. But that’s a near certainty since the #1 ranked Georgia Bulldogs (10-0) will likely be facing the #2 ranked Alabama Crimson Tide in the SEC championship game at the end of the regular season.
All in all, Michigan bettors are looking at a lot of good opportunities over the last two weeks of the season. While Ohio State stands in the way of possible BCS playoffs dates for Michigan State and Michigan, both Michigan teams still have legitimate shots at glory.
The Ohio State/Michigan game should be of particular betting interest. Even with the game being played in Ann Arbor, the betting line should make Ohio State favorites. We think it’s close though, with less than a touchdown between them.