Delaware could cash in following Supreme Court ruling on sports wagering

The US Supreme Court's ruling that lifted a ban on sports betting is being closely studied in Delaware, which has offered parlay betting on NFL games for nearly a decade.

"In the coming days, the lottery office will consult with the Delaware Attorney General's Office to more fully understand the details and impact of this decision on Delaware," Governor John Carney said in a statement. "Specifically, we will be looking at whether the opinion allows Delaware to offer full-scale sports gaming."

From the industry's perspective, there are pluses and minuses. Dover Downs President Ed Sutor said about 40-percent of the casino's sports betting customers were from other states.

"In the not too distant future they're going to be able to make those bets in their own states, without coming here," Sutor said.

Additionally, the shift to single-game betting and allowing wagers on games in other sports would require what Sutor called "massive" retraining.

"Now, they're going to have to have conversations with bettors about the myriad of types of bets, over-unders and other things they may not have ever seen before," Sutor said. "It will take some time for us and the lottery to train the people who are involved in sports betting."

University of Delaware Economics Professor Dr. William Latham III said it's likely Delaware will enjoy increased sports wagering business, even if out-of-state players stay home. Also, Latham said there is currently an "incredibly huge amount" of illegal sports betting.

"When it becomes legal, I think more people will come into the legal part of the market," Latham said.

"I wouldn't count on billions of dollars coming into Delaware unexpectedly over the next few years," former Delaware State Chamber of Commerce President Rich Heffron said.

Carney indicated in his statement that the administration currently believes Delaware already has the necessary laws and regulations to implement full'scale sports gaming.

"If it is permissible under the opinion, full-scale sports gaming could be available at Delaware's casinos before the end of June," Carney said.

Reporter - Anchor

Mark Fowser is a veteran journalist in Delaware.