Jersey Voters Turn Thumbs Down on College Betting Measure

Jersey Voters Turn Thumbs Down on College Betting Measure
By Lou Monaco

New Jersey, the results are in.

Garden State residents voted no Tuesday to allow in-state college sports betting on teams or events held in the state.

With 97.48% of precincts reporting, more than one million people (1,055,709, 56.64%) voted no to the ballot question and 808,321 (43.36%) voted yes. The numbers represent 6,188 of 6,348 precincts.

Voters weighed in on this referendum question:

Do you approve amending the Constitution to permit wagering through casinos and current or former horse racetracks on all college sport or athletic events that are held in the State?

Insufficient Public Awareness Might Have Hurt

Many have questioned the lack of publicity efforts to educate the public on the referendum by supporters of the bill and sports betting companies that currently operate in New Jersey.

In mid-June, the state Assembly passed SCR133 – with Assembly Concurrent Resolution 200 – to allow sports betting on in-state college teams and in-state college tournaments and events by a vote of 70-4.

New Jersey has had legal sports betting since 2018 and residents can wager on college sports on teams not in New Jersey and events held outside the state.

The state has three NCAA Division I football programs: Monmouth, Princeton and Rutgers. Those three universities are also home to DI men’s and women’s basketball programs, along with five others: Seton Hall, Saint Peter’s, Rider, Fairleigh Dickinson and the New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT).

With no change in legislation, bettors will be affected when the NCAA men’s basketball tournament comes to the Prudential Center in downtown Newark in March 2025. Seton Hall will be the host school.

The event will mark the first East Regional at the Prudential Center since 2011, when No. 4 Kentucky defeated No. 2 North Carolina in the Region Final.

New Jersey voters did pass a constitutional amendment to allow certain organizations to use proceeds from bingo, raffles or other games of chance to support their organizations.



Lou Monaco had been East Coast Scene columnist for Gaming Today in Las Vegas since June 2019, covering the East Coast sportsbook scene with emphasis on NJ and PA. He also currently is a part-time writer for the high school sports department for NJ Advanced Media ( in Iselin, NJ. Lou has over 30 years sports experience with previous stints at ESPN SportsTicker, Daily Racing Form and Oddschecker.

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