Arkansas bettors looking to wager on the Razorbacks’ NCAA basketball tournament opener Thursday have one option for placing a mobile wager — Southland’s Betly Sportsbook.
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On March 5, Southland Casino Racing in West Memphis launched the first-ever legal online sportsbook in the state. The browser-based Betly Sportsbook website has been available since then for PC and Mac users.
Southland made a Betly Sportsbook mobile app available for Android users a few days later. An iPhone version is expected soon.
The state’s other two casinos also plan to launch mobile apps in the near future. These casinos are Saracen in Pine Bluff and Oaklawn in Hot Springs.
Bettors are already allowed to place in-person wagers at the state’s three casinos, but mobile sports betting became legal March 4 after approval from the state Racing Commission and a legislative budget committee.
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BetSaracen Soon to Go Live
Saracen had anticipated launching its BetSaracen app in time for the beginning of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament. The first March Madness games were played Tuesday. The tournament ends with the title game on April 4 at the Caesars Superdome in New Orleans.
For several days, Arkansans have seen television commercials promising the BetSaracen mobile sportsbook is coming soon.
A date has not been set for when the BetSaracen app will launch.
Neal Atkinson, Saracen’s table games director, told Gambling.com the casino wants to be certain the app is in compliance and working correctly before it’s launched.
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“At this point, our team has done everything on their end to be prepared to launch our new (Arkansas) sports bettingapp,” he said. “However, it is now in the hands of external vendors that are responsible for checking and testing all of the systems of BetSaracen before it becomes operational. It is critical that every element is performing properly and in-compliance before going live.”
Oaklawn Anticipates Spring Launch
At Oaklawn, the sportsbook team is working to have its wagering app available in the April-June timeframe, General Manager Wayne Smith told Gambling.com in a statement.
“We took a more conservative approach and waited for the Racing Commission and the Legislature to give their approval before we started working with our vendor GAN to get our mobile platform ready,” Smith said.
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Hogs Are -5 Against Vermont
Led by coach Eric Musselman, the Arkansas Razorbacks (25-8) open tournament play on Thursday against the Vermont Catamounts (28-5). Tipoff is scheduled for 8:20 p.m. CT at KeyBank Center in Buffalo, New York. The game is being televised on TNT.
Arkansas is favored by five points on the DraftKings Arkansas sportsbook app on the point spread.
The team that emerges from that matchup will face the winner of the Connecticut-New Mexico State game.
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