March is all about college basketball, as it’s by far the signature month for the sport.
And while the women’s games get overshadowed by the men’s, there are plenty of memorable March Madness moments to come in the weeks ahead in San Antonio.
That’s the spot of the upcoming women’s NCAA Tournament bubble, which will begin on March 21 after the selection show on March 15.
Betting options for women’s college basketball in Michigan, however, are quite sparse even with the launch of online sportsbooks in January. Sportsbooks say more games will be offered soon.
Two NCAA games, no NCAA outrights posted on Monday
WynnBet was one of three operators that had one game available for betting Monday morning, as No. 6 Baylor was 15-point favorites against No. 20 West Virginia.
Four Winds Sportsbook and TwinSpires also had the Horizon League finals between Wright State (-6.5 points) and Cleveland State available for bets.
DraftKings was the only operator to respond to PlayMichigan that it had posted any games previous to this week.
Of Michigan’s 12 sports betting sites, none had posted outright NCAA women’s champion futures bets.
DraftKings offered 11 women’s basketball games since launch
According to Remington Parker of DraftKings Michigan, as of Friday, the operator had posted markets on 11 women’s college basketball games in Michigan since Jan. 22.
- Mississippi vs. South Carolina, Feb. 25
- UConn vs. Creighton, Feb. 25
- UConn vs. Butler, Feb. 27
- Maryland vs. Northwestern, Feb. 28
- South Carolina vs. Texas A&M, Feb. 28
- Baylor vs. Texas, March 1
- Penn State vs. Rutgers, March 2
- Iowa vs. Indiana, March 3
- Washington vs. Colorado, March 3
- Central Michigan vs. Ball State, March 3
- West Virginia vs. Kansas State, March 3
While the CMU Chippewas were posted for a game last week, noticeably absent was No. 12 Michigan.
DraftKings will continue offering games this week during the conference tournaments, Parker said, with all games scheduled to be offered to start the NCAA Tournament’s Sweet 16.
More operators say games are on the way, too.
Other operators: Women’s basketball bets on the way
Spokesperson Andrew Brown of TwinSpires noted that more women’s basketball games will be available on the platform “within the coming days.”
PointsBet will have markets available, likely during the women’s Final Four, according to spokesperson Patrick Eichner.
However, Eichner noted that the Australian company has had NCAA women’s basketball games available for betting in Australia.
Will Michigan bettors wager on women’s hoops?
Of course, there’s an underlying market question for Michigan online sportsbooks.
Is there a demand from MI sports bettors to put action on women’s games? Or, is there a little chicken-and-the-egg going on, with markets either not being available or that nobody knows they are available?
Or is it that, because of either a lack of interest or coverage or perhaps both, gamblers don’t know much about who to bet on?
After all, it is not as though Michigan has disallowed bets on women’s college sports. Quite the opposite.
Stephanie Rutkoske of St. Clair Shores usually bets on men’s college basketball and hockey and plans to bet NFL football games this fall.
She says she doesn’t plan to bet on women’s games this month because she doesn’t follow the game.
“I would not personally bet on women’s basketball,” she told PlayMichigan. “I do not know much about it.”
Higher volume games combined with big sporting events such as March Madness changes things for sportsbooks. The greater the demand, the greater the interest, the greater the chance of getting someone to place a bet.
Eventually, the apps will have more women’s hoops odds on hand.