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Can't Bet on Huskers Games From Nebraska

Written by:
Gilbert Horowitz
Published on:
May/14/2021

Senators in Nebraska Ok'd a bill that would allow sports betting in the state, just not on Huskers games.  Nebraska residents and visitors will still be able to bet on in-state college teams and games that feature them utilizing one of many sportsbooks based outside Nebraska and the US.

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Lawmakers tweaked a gambling regulation bill on Thursday that excludes the home games of instate teams in an effort to pick up enough supportive votes to pass it.

Sen. Steve Lathrop, of Omaha, said the compromise was part of legislative “sausage making” that needed to be done to ensure the broader bill passes. The bill is critical because it puts in place regulations for casinos, which are slated to open after voters legalized the industry in 2020.

“You may not like it, but in the end, we need to get (the bill) across the finish line,” Lathrop said.

Some lawmakers have said they aren’t comfortable with allowing bets on collegiate teams, arguing that it could put undue pressure on Nebraska’s student athletes. Other lawmakers said fans are already betting on collegiate teams, and argued that the change makes no sense.

“We can bet on the Iowa Hawkeyes, but we can’t bet on the Huskers” under the changed bill, said Sen. Tom Brandt, of Plymouth.

Sen. Adam Morfeld, of Lincoln, said the bill will only encourage Nebraskans to place their Husker bets in Iowa, where such wagering is legal.

“We’re pretending like this isn’t occurring,” he said, calling the measure “completely illogical” and “puritanical nonsense.”

Lawmakers must vote on the bill once more before it goes to Gov. Pete Ricketts.

- Gilbert Horowitz, Gambling911.com

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