What Sportsbooks Are North Carolina Residents Excited For?

What Sportsbooks Are North Carolina Residents Excited For?
Fact Checked by Nate Hamilton

North Carolina sports betting might bring a new meaning to the term March Madness.

In less than a month, statewide online sports betting will launch in the Tar Heel State, and in less than two weeks, adults 21 and older can begin to register with their favorite North Carolina sports betting apps. In the meantime, many people are already doing their homework on the operators that have applied for licenses.

So, which one is their favorite?

With the launch of online sports betting coming to North Carolina on March 11th, our team at BetCarolina.com looked at which sportsbooks that people in North Carolina are clamoring to place a bet. Utilizing Google Trends for each sportsbook over the last 90 days, we were able to gather data for each sportsbook coming to the state.

And the winner is…

Sportsbooks NC Residents Are Looking Forward To Most

Rank Sportsbook Search Interest Level (Last 90 Days)
1 DraftKings36
2 FanDuel29
T-3 ESPN Bet7
T-3 bet3657
5 BetMGM6
6 Caesars Sportsbook5
7 Underdog Sports4
8 Fanatics Sportsbook2

It’s no surprise to see DraftKings North Carolina and FanDuel battle it out for the top spot. They’re the UNC and Duke of the online gaming industry, and they’ll likely battle it in North Carolina as they have in other states.

ESPN BET and bet365 tied for third in our study, and they contrast with one another. ESPN BET is a newly launched product by PENN Entertainment, and it’s being heavily promoted by personalities from its sports media giant namesake. On the other hand, bet365 is an established brand based in Great Britain, and while it has made strides recently in several U.S. markets, its advertising strategy is more low-key.

Bet365, by the way, was the first operator to announce a North Carolina sports betting partnership, doing so with the NBA’s Charlotte Hornets.

Well-established brands ranked right behind those two. BetMGM North Carolina, which will partner with the Charlotte Motor Speedway, came in fifth place. Caesars Sportsbook already has a presence in North Carolina as it operates two brick-and-mortar sportsbooks at the Harrah’s casinos owned by the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians in the western portion of the state.

Behind them are two newer entries in the sports betting field. Underdog Sports is a Brooklyn-based company that has made its name as a daily fantasy sports operator in recent years. North Carolina marks its first foray into sports betting. Meanwhile, Fanatics Sportsbook launched last year as the online sports retailer is trying to make a name for itself in gaming. 

North Carolina Sports Betting Status Report

For now, no operator licenses have been approved by the North Carolina State Lottery Commission, the state agency put in charge of regulating sports betting. That’s likely to change soon, though.

On Monday, Commission Deputy Executive Director Sterl Capenter told the agency’s Sports Betting Committee that eight of the nine operator applicants are progressing toward being approved to start taking bets on March 11. While he did not specifically name the applicants, it’s largely assumed the eight ranked above are the ones on track for the launch date. 

BetCarolina.com is your source for the latest gaming news in North Carolina. Bookmark our site to read our reviews and get the best North Carolina sports betting promo codes available.



Steve Bittenbender
Steve Bittenbender
Sports Betting Expert & Insider

As a writer and analyst for BetCarolina.com, Steve not only covers gaming news and developments in North Carolina but also provides insights into what they mean for bettors, licensed operators and the state. <br> <br> Steve’s been featured in Axios, Queen City News, 97.9 The Hill, WNCT, CBS 17, WWAY, Spectrum News and several other news outlets across the Tar Heel State. He’s interviewed influential leaders in sports, {{anchor("gaming","BetCarolina.com - News - Filtered",44394,"","","","gtm-content-internal-links")|raw}} and politics. Over the past year, he’s covered the legalization of statewide {{anchor("North Carolina sports betting","BetCarolina.com - Homepage","","","","","gtm-content-internal-links")|raw}} as well as the discussion about approving commercial casinos. <br> <br> Back in August, Steve first reported that {{anchor("a March launch","BetCarolina.com - News - Filtered",39792,"","","","gtm-content-internal-links")|raw}} was most likely for North Carolina sports betting. <br> <br> Steve has broken news about {{anchor("what North Carolina sports betting apps will be available","BetCarolina.com - News - Filtered",48516,"","","","gtm-content-internal-links")|raw}}, and {{anchor("the state's launch","BetCarolina.com - News - Filtered",45236,"","","","gtm-content-internal-links")|raw}}. He has also covered {{anchor("how North Carolina college athletics programs stand to benefit from it","BetCarolina.com - News - Filtered",38021,"","","","gtm-content-internal-links")|raw}} and {{anchor("changes made to the sports betting law in the state budget","BetCarolina.com - News - Filtered",40726,"","","","gtm-content-internal-links")|raw}}. <br> <br> A veteran journalist with 25 years of experience covering sports, politics and business, Steve has reported on the gambling industry intently over the past five years, an era that has seen sports betting proliferate across the country in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s historic ruling overturning PASPA. <br> <br> You can also find Steve providing news updates and insights on his X account @BittGDCG.

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