COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — The biggest football game of the year is almost here and sports bettors in Ohio and across the country are getting ready.
The American Gaming Association said approximately 68 million people are expected to bet on this year’s Super Bowl.
Some bettors said they don’t care who wins, but they do want to have skin in the game.
“It makes the games more fun to watch,” bettor Joe Pike said. “Because you have something on the line personally and everything is more exciting.”
Nick Mandarano, another sports bettor, said, “A lot of times if you are watching a game and you don’t really have a rooting interest, you can put a dollar or two down and all of a sudden you have something to root for.”
The Problem Gambling Network of Ohio said many of these sports betting apps are geared toward young adults, some of whom end up losing a lot of money.
“I have a friend that told me he’s down $5,000 in one of his apps. I thought that was a little problematic, he’s still paying off student loans,” Mandarano said.
“I have friends that lose like $300 a week or more, so yeah, it can be really bad,” Pike said.
It can be unclear for some people when sports betting becomes problematic.
“I can’t drug test you for gambling,” said Abdullah Maymood, the administrative coordinator of the Gambling Intervention Program at Maryhaven. “I don’t know if you have a gambling disorder or not just by looking at you.”
The Problem Gambling Network of Ohio said some red flags to look out for are spending excess amounts of time and money on betting apps and consistently going over limits set before game time.
“If you are gambling, it should not be with the intention of making money,” said Derek Longmeier, the executive director at the Problem Gambling Network of Ohio. “It should be just with the intention of having fun so if they are gambling to win back their losses or gambling to cover their rent, then those are certainly big warning signs.”
Longmeier said the Super Bowl is the biggest day for sports betting every year and he expects an increase in people asking for help come Monday and Tuesday.
Original article posted here.