Sportsbooks Continue to Run Ads in California Despite Betting Being Illegal

We’ve reached yet another fall in the Golden State where legal California sports betting is not permitted. We don’t have to tell you that people are furious about this, but thanks to nothing changing with the local government, there’s nothing that can be done. With that said, illegal activity continues to be on the rise, which is a bad look for the state. To make matters worse, sportsbooks continue to run ads in California despite betting being illegal.

This has been a growing problem for California officials, as illegal activity indeed has been a problem for a while now. If you take a look on social media, though, if you type in ‘California sports betting’ on X and on Instagram, countless different sports betting promotions for people in California are being published. On top of that, people are even promoting sportsbooks that somehow can get by the laws in the state. This is a lose-lose for everyone involved.

California was close to getting things legalized this past November, as two different sports betting measures were on the ballot. The hope was that one of them would get voted in by the public. Instead, the two bills failed in dramatic fashion and it was back to square one for the sports betting efforts. Things may be delayed to 2025 or 2026, which would be a complete and total nightmare for the state.

Until the laws change, more illegal activity will keep on rolling in. Things are only made worse with companies promoting different kinds of betting and activity for people in California to take advantage of. It has been made clear that every kind of sports betting wager is considered illegal in the state. Authorities have done their best to try and limit the activity, but they surely can’t prevent everyone from getting things done.

Illegal wagers will be high once again this football season

With the start of the NFL season coming on Thursday night, illegal wagers will be high once again this football season all over California. As much as authorities are able to shut down illegal bookies from getting their operations done, police and different authorities have a tough time keeping track of everything. With the NFL being so popular in California and their teams being so great, this is going to lead to millions of dollars being transferred this season in an unregulated fashion.

Entering the opening week of NFL action, people all over California are excited about the LA Rams, LA Chargers and San Francisco 49ers. With the Chargers, they will take on the Miami Dolphins in what will be a fun AFC battle. This will have Justin Herbert go head-to-head with fellow star quarterback Tua Tagovailoa. This could be a high-scoring game, especially since the two teams feature loaded offenses. Both teams also have strong NFL betting odds to make the playoffs.

As for the 49ers, they made history on Wednesday afternoon, agreeing to a monster extension with standout pass-rusher Nick Bosa. This new deal for Bosa makes him the highest-paid defenseman of all time, which is huge news. Now, Bosa is going to want to try and live up to the hype of that new contract. He’s an incredible talent and he’ll be ready to put on a show from start to finish this season.

Not only that, but the NCAA is also massive in California as well. The USC Trojans hold strong NCAAF betting odds to win the Pac-12 this season and potentially earn a trip to the College Football Playoff. People in California would love nothing more than to bet on this team, as Caleb Williams remains a top contender to win the Heisman. However, any and all bets will be done illegally if people in California decide to bet on the NFL squads or any of the NCAA teams.

No betting bills are currently on the table in California

We can call but rule out things getting launched for 2024 here, as no betting bills are currently on the table in California. This is a major disappointment, especially with Florida, another huge state in the USA, taking big-time steps in the legalization process. California and Texas feel like they’re currently in the same position when it comes to trying to legalize sports betting.

Both states have an incredible amount of support, but it hasn’t led to things being overhauled. With Texas, you’ve had team owners like Jerry Jones, Jim Crane, Mark Cuban and others voiced their desire to get betting legalized. Both owners want to have sports betting kiosks inside of their stadiums down the road.

The same hope is there for California, but there has been nothing but bad news surrounding betting over the past year. The last November ballot was a big eye-opener for the local government. Everyone needs to get on the same page ASAP to make sure the proper kind of bill gets developed to make the voters happy. If that doesn’t happen, then things will surely continue to get pushed back here. This is not what anyone wants to see at all.


Peter Lewis

Peter Lewis Jr. comes from Mississippi where he and his family spend their days discussing college football, baseball and basketball. He's written sports journalism for years after studying journalism at a local university. Over time, Peter has cultivated extensive knowledge covering sports betting legislation across the country. He closely tracks the latest regulatory developments and provides key insights into their impacts. Peter also offers sharp MLB betting analysis, leveraging stats and trends to identify value on matchups.