Online Sports Betting in FloridaPublished: | Updated:
Welcome to safe and legal betting in Florida!
The Sunshine State is known for its warm climate and sunny beaches. Home to some of the world’s most epic theme parks, Floridians genuinely know how to have fun. Finally, the state legalized sports betting in November 2023. It was previously also live in 2021.
Although Hard Rock had a short run of legal betting in 2021, the state removed regulated betting after just a few weeks. The Seminole Tribe, who runs Hard Rock, had exclusivity in offering sports betting in the Sunshine State.
However, the Seminole tribe was been taken to Federal Court for lawsuits. This is because one federal judge believed that this exclusivity wasn’t legal. The judge argued that the Seminole Tribe operated statewide with mobile bets instead of only on their Seminole land. The judge also asked whether the Seminole data servers must be placed on the land for the bet to be legal or if the bettor has to be located on the Seminole land.
The lawsuits caused Hard Rock to stop its betting operations in Florida until it’s been solved in Federal Court. Thankfully, it was sorted in November 2023 and Floridans can now safely bet on the Hard Rock Bet app in FL.
Popular sports in Florida 2024
The Sunshine State is a golfer’s paradise, with its warm weather and flat surfaces. Thanks to this, many professional golf tournaments are held in Florida, including the Players Championship and the Honda Classic.
Having warm weather all year round and hundreds of miles of beaches also results in many water sports. It’s common to see surfers along the coast and boats and jet skis along the shores. Fishing is also popular in Florida, where you can explore the Gulf of Mexico or one of Florida’s many lakes and rivers.
With 21 million Floridians, Florida is the third largest state by population, after California (38 million) and Texas (28 million). This means that their sports communities are of a substantial size.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are a popular NFL choice to follow in Florida. When it comes to the NBA, The Miami Heat and Orlando Magic have the most significant communities. In the MLB, we see the state represented by Miami Marlins and Tampa Bay Rays.
College Sports in Florida
The Sunshine State also is a host to dozens of collegiate programs, with more than a few notable ones at the Division 1 level. The most prominent Florida schools, from an athletic standpoint, are the following:
- The University of Florida (Gators)
- The Florida Atlantic (Owls)
- The Florida State (Seminoles)
- The University of Miami (Hurricanes)
- The South Florida (Bulls)
- The University of Central Florida (Knights)
There are other schools that play at a high level across the Florida collegiate landscape, but the ones listed are perhaps the most notable.
Notable Florida Athletes:
This list is comprised of both athletes who grew up in the state of Florida as well as athletes who ply their trade here. In order to differentiate them, they will be broken up into two different listings:
- Deion Sanders (Hall of Fame NFL defensive back)
- Cris Collinsworth (NFL star and 16-time Sports Emmy Award winner)
- Doris Hart (Career Grand Slam Winner on the WTA Tour)
- Steve Carlton (4-time Cy Young Award-winning pitcher in the MLB)
- Chris Evert (18-time Grand Slam Champion in the WTA)
- Emmitt Smith (Hall of Fame running back who is the NFL’s all-time leading rusher)
- David “Deacon” Jones (Hall of Fame defensive end in the NFL who coined the term “sack”)
- Rowdy Gaines (three-time Olympic gold medalist in swimming)
Athletes who play/played for Florida Teams:
- Dwyane Wade (Future Hall of Fame NBA shooting guard for the Miami Heat)
- Alonzo Mourning (Hall of Fame NBA forward for the Miami Heat)
- LeBron James (Future Hall of Fame NBA forward who won two titles in four years with the Miami Heat)
- Ray Lewis (Hall of Fame linebacker who starred at the University of Miami)*
- Ed Reed (Hall of Fame safety who starred at the University of Miami)*
- Scott Mellanby (Longtime NHL player who was known for his time with the Florida Panthers)
- Aleksander Barkov (Florida Panthers captain)
- Jimmy Butler (Shooting guard for the Miami Heat)
- Sandy Alcantara (star pitcher for the Miami Marlins)
- Jaylen Waddle (star wide receiver for the Miami Dolphins)
- Tyreek Hill (star wide receiver for the Miami Dolphins)
*The University of Miami has so many famous athletes you could create a separate page just for them*
Bet on sports in Florida 2024
Only Hard Rock Bet is currently available in Florida. We highly advise against betting on any other sites available in Florida, as those sites are not safe and legal. A legal site requires you to use a geolocation program to verify that you are in a legal state, which Florida is not unless it’s Hard Rock.
By playing on an illegal site, your personal and financial information may be used or sold to third parties. Your winnings may not be paid out, and there will be no consumer protection from the state. We highly advise only playing on legal and regulated sites for your safety.
By playing legally, tax revenues will directly go to the state communities to support education, infrastructure, and much more. If you are over 21 years old and can travel from Florida to place a sports bet, these are the closest legal states:
Georgia: Not legal with mobile or in-person betting yet.
Alabama: Not legal with mobile or in-person betting yet.
South Carolina: In-person betting is legal. Mobile betting is not legal yet.
Mississippi: In-person betting is legal. Mobile betting is not legal yet.
North Carolina: In-person betting is legal. Mobile betting is not legal yet.
Louisiana: In-person betting is legal. Mobile betting is also permitted.
Tennessee: In-person betting is legal. Mobile betting is also legal.
Arkansas: In-person betting is legal. Mobile betting is also legal.
Responsible gambling in FL
If you are based in Florida and your gambling is out of control, you can call the National Problem Gambling Hotline at 1-800-522-4700. The call is anonymous, and the phone hotline is available 24/7/365. You can also text the number 1-800-522-4700 or enter the website chat here. Help is never too late to get from NCPG, even if you have played at an illegal site.
Want to learn more about online casinos and sports gambling? Follow our Online Gamblers Academy to learn how to have fun responsibly!
Yes, betting is legal in Florida on Hard Rock Bet.
Download the Hard Rock Bet app or go to their website. Make sure to explore the Responsible Gambling-section before you make a deposit.
Yes, betting is legal in Florida on Hard Rock Bet.
Florida legalized sports betting in November 2023, following a previous brief period of legalization in 2021.
The suspension of legal betting in Florida in 2021 was due to lawsuits against the Seminole Tribe’s exclusivity in offering sports betting, leading to a Federal Court case.
Popular sports and activities in Florida include golf tournaments, water sports, surfing, boating, jet skiing, and fishing, thanks to its warm weather and coastal areas.
Yes, you can bet on in-state college teams in Florida, including schools like the University of Florida (Gators) and Florida State (Seminoles).
Betting on sports in Florida is safe, but only on the Hard Rock Bet app, as other sites are not considered safe and legal.
Notable athletes from Florida include Deion Sanders, Cris Collinsworth, Doris Hart, Steve Carlton, Chris Evert, Emmitt Smith, and more.
If you’re in Florida and struggling with problem gambling, you can contact the National Problem Gambling Hotline at 1-800-522-4700, available 24/7 for anonymous support.