Online Sports Betting in MontanaPublished: | Updated:
When you think about Montana, what’s the first thing that comes to mind? Maybe breathtaking mountain views, wilderness, or wild animals roaming free, or perhaps it’s one of the least populated states in the United States. If you dig deeper, you might learn some really interesting things about the 41st United States.
Prone to the greatest range of temperature changes, the “Treasure State” has a lot to offer to outdoorsy visitors. Known for the Yellowstone National Park and Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park, Montana offers nothing but a big sky country and the great outdoors. Jokes aside, the state boasts a large population of Grizzly bears and has an incredibly diverse collection of land animals. Montana borders four different states and another country entirely.
Legal Sports Betting
Montana sports betting has been legal since March 2020. However, due to the state being relatively unpopulated (compared to other states that have legalized sports betting), it has a comparatively low profile in both online and retail betting options. Amazingly, Montana might have more sportsbook locations than any other state in the US – as Montana law allows all licensed lottery retailers in the state to offer sports betting on their premises.
That’s right – there are literally hundreds of locations in Montana that have applied for and received licenses to offer sports betting.
- Belgrade has 9 locations
- Billings has 75 locations
- Bozeman has 19 locations
- Butte has 34 locations
- Great Falls has 40 locations
- Helena has 22 locations
- Kalispell has 18 locations
- Missoula has 43 locations
Keep in mind; this is just some of the locations. Many Montana towns have a smattering of available options, even if they just have a single location.
Betting online in Montana is an interesting proposition. As per the state’s lottery FAQ:
“You can only register, log in, upload documents, browse the site, deposit, prepare wagers on your bet slip, withdraw funds, set your personal limits, and change your personal details when you are at home. You cannot place bets through your personal computer or mobile phone while at home. And you can only place wagers in an authorized Sports Bet Montana location.”
Basically, you can do the whole sign-up process, depositing, queuing up bets, etc… all online. The only part that’s not allowed is the actual physical act of placing a bet. That act has to be done within the premises of a physical (retail) sports betting location.
The Montana lottery also limits the maximum amount you can bet. While this in and of itself isn’t too unusual, you can still make a wager four times larger online ($1,000) than you are legally allowed to make in person ($250).
While there are no explicit prohibitions on college betting, both of Montana’s schools play at the FCS level (second tier). That would render bettors unable to place wagers on those teams.
- Montana is home to more than 100 locations around the state that offer some form of casino gambling.
- Despite the above, slot machines aren’t legal. Neither are blackjack, craps, and roulette.
- Horse betting is popular in Montana, namely at the Great Falls Turf Club, as well as the Miles City Bucking Horse Sale
- Montana’s name comes from the Spanish word “montaña,” which roughly translates to “mountainous.”
- The state’s motto is “oro y plata” which translates to “gold and silver.” This is derived from the state’s gold and silver deposits, first discovered in 1852.
- As a state, Montana has only 7.4 people per square mile. The only states with fewer people per square mile are Alaska and Wyoming. Conversely, New Jersey has 7,354 people per square mile.
- Interestingly, MT ranks 18th in the US in terms of boats per capita, despite being completely landlocked.
- For reasons unknown to most, pretending or simulating killing an animal is legal… unless you’re in the presence of a minor.
- In Helena, Montana, it is illegal to place a revolving fountain or lawn sprinkler in a spot where passersby may be hit.
Popular Sports & Sports Teams
Montana is not home to any professional sports teams. Unsurprisingly, with a total of barely over one million residents, there’s not much of a draw for MLB, NBA, NFL, or NHL franchises. However, there are still teams residents Montanan like to root for. You can find those teams below.
- NFL: These games are the most popular US sports betting option, and that includes Montana. The two most popular teams for Montanan are the Seattle Seahawks and the Denver Broncos.
- NBA: Montanan’s largely divided between the rooting interests of the Los Angeles Lakers and the Utah Jazz.
- MLB: It’s hard to find set allegiances for Montana residents in baseball. Slight affinities may exist for the Cincinnati Reds, the Chicago White Sox, or the Arizona Diamondbacks. These allegiances are due to minor league affiliates in Montana. Beyond those teams, the Colorado Rockies and Seattle Mariners are two more options.
- NHL: Montana is a huge hockey state. But Montana’s majority hockey rooting interest goes for the newly founded Las Vegas Golden Knights, despite that team being over 600 miles away.
- NCAA: The two most popular teams in Montana are naturally their homegrown ones. The Montana Grizzlies and the Montana State Bobcats both play in Division 1, yet both also play in the FCS for football.
At first glance, you might think that there couldn’t possibly be many famous athletes from Montana. With only one million residents, what are the odds of them producing consistent professional talent? As it turns out, pretty damn good!
- Dave McNally: A pitcher for the Baltimore Orioles, McNally tied the then-AL record with 17 consecutive wins between 1968-1969. He also won 20 games four times as a member of the Orioles, finishing his career with 184 wins and 1,512 strikeouts. A 3x All-Star and 2x World Series champion, he’s one of the best players in Orioles’ history.
- Dan Mortensen: Rodeo all-around World Champion in 1997; saddle bronc winner in 1993-1995 and 1997-1998.
- Lones Ligger: 2x Olympic gold medalist in small-bore rifle shooting (1964) and free rifle (1972).
- Ryan Leaf: Despite a less-than-stellar pro career in the NFL, Leaf was an incredibly talented high school and collegiate QB who took Washington State to the 1997 Rose Bowl.
- Scott Davis: Winner of the 1993 and 1994 U.S. figure skating championships.
- Shannon Cate: Finished her basketball career at Montana with a then-record 2,172 points.
- Robert Craig Knievel: Better known by his nickname of “Evel Knievel,” he was a legendary stuntman and daredevil who broke 35 bones trying to jump across, well, anything on his motorcycle.
Responsible Gambling Info
If gambling is causing a problem in your life, we encourage you to ask questions, gather information and conduct research on the type of help that is most appropriate for your situation. This information is intended to be a starting point—it is not a complete list of information or services.
If you feel that gambling has gone out of control, find help in your state now. You will find counseling, treatment, self-help, and support groups at 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. Follow the Online Gamblers Academy to learn how to have fun responsibly!