The now wrapped up NCAA basketball tournament better known as March Madness managed to set in some new records. For starters, the final game in the men’s event was as closely-contested as possible with the Kansas Jayhawks securing a three-point victory against the North Carolina Tar Heels. However, this wasn’t the only noteworthy game this season with the women’s basketball finals proving just as interesting.
Women’s College Basketball Finals Set New Records
When the season opened, South Carolina was posted as the favorite to win the title at odds of (+160) and they did, posting a near-flawless performance through the entire event. With Geno Auriemma at the helm, the Gamecocks managed to defeat the Connecticut Huskies led by Dawn Staley. The game wasn’t as highly-contested one as the man’s basketball finals, but still proved a great show for spectators with over 110 points scored (64-49).
Now, the numbers are in and it turns out that the game between the Gamecocks and the Huskies is the most-watched women’s national championship since 2004 peaking at 5.91 million concurrent viewers, an enviable number indeed. But it’s not just viewership that climbed up. Similarly, Yahoo Sports spoke with BetMGM VP of trading Jason Scott who reassured us that from a betting POV, history has made history as well.
People Knew Where The Smart Money Was
It’s in fact the most wagered-on event on a woman’s sporting event in the sportsbook’s history, Scott assured. The majority of BetMGM bettors seemed to back South Carolina as well. According to Scott’s data, 70% of the total amount wagered went on the Gamecocks with 79% of the money on the point spreads going the way of South Carolina. Scott confirmed that the “sharp” bettors had bet on the under for this one. Speaking to Yahoo, he congratulated the team for making it.
The rapid legalization of sports gambling has given sports fans an additional incentive to pursue betting opportunities. As over 30 states now enable residents to bet remotely on sports – or failing that in-person – the appetite for watching and participating in sports through the occasional flutter has increased.