Barstool Enters Third State: Illinois Live for Legal Sports Betting

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The Barstool Sportsbook app is now available in Illinois, just in time for the start of March Madness. Barstool has partnered with the Hollywood Casino in Aurora to gain online market access, and a mobile app is available on both Android and iOS devices.

Illinois is the third state to have the Barstool Sportsbook app available after Barstool’s successful launches in Pennsylvania and Michigan. Barstool Sportsbook is now the sixth online betting option in Illinois, and mobile betting has dominated the industry in the Land of Lincoln.


Penn National Gaming bought out 36 percent of Barstool Sports in January 2020, and the goal was always to unveil a mobile sports betting app. Things have progressed much quicker than anticipated, and the Barstool Sports app could be available in as many as 10 states by the end of 2021.

Illinois continues to allow mobile registration through April 3, which should enable Barstool to get off to a great start in the state. Barstool Sportsbook offered a free $10 credit to all new customers who signed up for an account and an additional $5 for updating betting preferences.

New customers were also eligible for a risk-free bet up to $1,000 on their first bet at Barstool.

Illinois Sports Betting Continues to Grow

Illinois is now the fourth-largest sports betting market in the United States, and getting into the top-three is a real possibility. January was the seventh straight record-setting month for Illinois, even though nearly all retail sports betting is still shut down.

In January, the total sports betting handle in Illinois was over $580 million, which was nearly $90 million more than the previous record in December. Pennsylvania just went over $600 million in monthly betting handle for the first time, and Illinois could join them in the coming months.

Illinois does not allow for betting on in-state college teams, but betting on March Madness will be permitted for all other games.

Barstool Personalities Leading Promos

One of the biggest reasons that Penn National agreed to acquire 36 percent of Barstool Sports was due to the growing popularity of that site. Barstool Sports has built up a cult-like following, especially with a younger generation of sports bettors.

Founder Dave Portnoy and Dan “Big Cat” Katz are two of the most prominent personalities, and they have helped push the Barstool Sportsbook. These personalities create their own promos and bets that are then added to the site for bettors to back.

Michigan Enjoying Barstool AppDetroit Lions

If Illinois sports bettors are similar to those in Michigan, then Barstool Sportsbook could become one of the favorites in the state. Within the first 10 days of launching in Michigan, Barstool acquired over 48,000 new customers at the site.

Only 26,000 of these new customers made a deposit at Barstool during the first 10 days, but there was still plenty of action taken. Barstool was able to rack up $3.3 million in gross gaming revenue, and there was more than $27 million in wagers placed.