David Caraviello for Bookies.com

By David Caraviello | | 3 mins

PointsBet-Maryland Athletics Partnership A Big Ten First

PointsBet-Maryland Athletics Partnership A Big Ten First
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A day before retail Maryland sports betting launches, an online bookmaker has announced a partnership with the athletic department of the state’s flagship university.

University of Maryland athletics has signed a multiyear partnership with PointsBet Sportsbook, marking the first such agreement between an online bookmaker and a Big Ten school. According to a news release, the deal includes fan-facing, in-game and campus activations in and around Maryland’s basketball arena and football stadium, in addition to responsible and problem gambling education provided to Maryland staff, students and fans.

PointsBet, one of the most popular betting apps in the state, will also be featured across Maryland’s digital channels and sports radio network broadcasts. The partnership with the Terrapins will also include a philanthropic component, which according to the news release will be announced at a later date.

Terps Join Likes of LSU, Colorado

“With the announcement of our partnership with PointsBet through Maryland Sports Properties … we are looking forward to raising awareness and educating our student-athlete and university community about responsible gambling,” Maryland associate athletic director Brian Ullmann said in the release. “Maryland athletics continues to lead boldly with the first deal of its kind in the Big Ten Conference and in the region.”

Maryland is the latest in a growing number of college athletic departments that have inked sponsorship deals with sportsbooks, primarily through their athletic media rights holders, since the law limiting the practice was struck down by the Supreme Court. Colorado sports betting has been live since May 2020, and the University of Colorado that same year announced a five-year deal with PointsBet, which has its U.S. headquarters in Denver.

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In September 2021, LSU announced a multiyear agreement with Caesars Sportsbook that included a renaming of the club level at the Tigers’ football stadium. Louisiana sports betting is set to go live online in the coming weeks.

Also, this past September, the University of Denver — which has a lower sports profile with the exception of its powerhouse hockey program — announced a multiyear deal with SuperBook Sports. In Nevada, UNLV and Nevada have had agreements with William Hill since 2017.

Maryland Sports Betting Launches Thursday

News of the University of Maryland deal with PointsBet comes just as Maryland sports betting is slated to launch at 3 brick-and-mortar casinos.. The first legal bets in the state are scheduled to be taken Thursday at MGM National Harbor, with opening ceremonies planned at new sportsbooks at Live! Casino Hotel in Hanover and Horseshoe Baltimore on Friday.

PointsBet gained access to the Maryland market though an agreement with Riverboat on the Potomac, a gaming facility located on the Virginia shore of the Potomac River. A satellite facility on the Maryland side will serve as its presence in the Old Line State, although an opening date is not yet known. Riverboat on the Potomac’s website describes the facility as under construction.

Up to 60 online betting sites could eventually launch in Maryland.

About the Author

David Caraviello for Bookies.com
David Caraviello
Veteran sports journalist David Caraviello has covered college football, college basketball, motorsports and golf, covering all three US golf majors, the Daytona 500 and SEC football.