Everything was looking great for Georgia sports betting, as people were convinced that things would move in the right direction this year. It really looked like fans would be able to check the best rated sportsbooks on a consistent level and then get their bets in. Well, now it’s looking like Georgia sports betting could be delayed to 2024. What in the world is going on here?
As most of you know by now, there was a bill in place to potentially legalize sports betting in the state, but things died on the senate floor. The fact that nothing was able to move forward was beyond infuriating and countless people have voiced their displeasure over things all over social media. People are tired of not being able to make bets in their own state.
With that said, it doesn’t look like things are going to get rolling in 2023 either. The way things stand as of now, 2024 really is looking like the earliest we could see betting. Per a report, Georgia wanted to hire lawmakers and regulators to focus on betting all over the state. With things not going through this year, it’s only going to delay the process of finding people for those spots.
With this, according to a report, the general feeling is that the earliest sports betting could arrive would be by 2024 for the start of the NFL season. That’s nearly two years away, which is wild to even think about. For people in Georgia, they went from potentially getting ready to make their bets in the near future, to now having to maybe wait for more than 24 months? It just doesn’t seem right.
Calvin Ridley betting scandal is still rocking Georgia
It goes without saying, but the Calvin Ridley betting scandal is still rocking Georgia as a whole, especially with things being put on the back burner for legalization. In case you forgot, the Atlanta Falcons wide receiver was suspended through the 2022 season after it was announced that he was caught betting on NFL games through the HardRock in Florida.
For professional players to bet on the NFL is a big no-no, and it turns out Ridley was betting only around $1,500. Despite this, commissioner Roger Goodell had no choice but to drop the hammer of a suspension on Ridley, meaning he won’t be able to suit up for Atlanta, one of the biggest pro teams in Georgia, until the 2023 campaign.
“There is nothing more fundamental to the NFL’s success – and to the reputation of everyone associated with our league – than upholding the integrity of the game,” Goodell said in a statement following the announcement that Ridley had been suspended. “This is the responsibility of every player, coach, owner, game official, and anyone else employed in the league.”
With the Ridley suspension rocking the league as a whole, it has also brought plenty of negative attention for sports betting opposition in Georgia. There’s a growing concern that if sports betting does get legalized, then not only will more players try and take part in betting, but that the numbers of addiction are also going to increase. Ridley’s poor decision really has people worried about the future.
Breaking: The NFL has suspended Falcons WR Calvin Ridley indefinitely through at least the conclusion of the 2022 season for betting on NFL games during the 2021 season. pic.twitter.com/YaW32CsHTP
— ESPN (@espn) March 7, 2022
Illegal sports betting will only grow in Georgia
One of the big issues people need to realize here is that illegal sports betting will only grow in Georgia until the lawmakers can get on the same page. This is already a major issue for the state, as people check the NFL odds, NBA odds, college football odds and more and then place their bets through the black market. This is something that simply can’t continue.
While the state features plenty of pro teams, college football is also massive in the state. The Georgia Bulldogs are one of the best teams in the country each fall and they showcased their skills in the best way possible last year, winning the National Championship Game. In that battle, they were able to take down Nick Saban and the Alabama Crimson Tide. No one will forget that victory.
With that said, people across the country – where things have been made legal – are checking the odds leading up to the college football season and they’re ready to bet big on the Bulldogs to make serious noise in the SEC. Kirby Smart brought in another top recruiting class, and guys from the 2022 haul will be ready to make a splash from Week 1 moving forward. Big things are expected of this team.
With Georgia primed for another big year, the amount of bets that will be going their way can’t be measured. However, we know the number for local fans in Georgia: zero. The hope is that a miracle can arrive and sports betting will be on the docket sooner than later. As things stand, however, it may be 2024 in the fall at the earliest for history to be made. It’s really unfortunate news, but it’s the way things are.
“IT’S 6AM! WE GETTING THAT WORK!”#GoDawgs pic.twitter.com/ScGmDeq97f
— Georgia Football (@GeorgiaFootball) June 16, 2022