Welcome To Midwest Sharp

Your Guide To Online Sports Betting And Gaming In The Midwest

Michigan – Indiana – Illinois – Iowa

The sports betting environment has never been better for sports fans throughout the Midwest. In 2021, Michigan launched its first online sportsbooks, joining a growing list of Midwest States with legal, online sports betting. Midwest sports fans can place bets at dozens of sports betting apps in Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, and Iowa.

The Midwest region offers bettors top sports betting brands like DraftKings, FanDuel, BetRivers, PointsBet, and Caesars Sportsbook.

The Midwest is not just about sports betting. In early 2021, Michigan also launched its first real money online casino and poker apps. Michigan was the first state in the region to offer the full lineup of online gambling apps. Illinois is considering similar legislation to legalize online casino games as well.

Midwest Sharp Recommended Betting Apps

Stay safe: Play at legal and licensed online sportsbooks and casino apps.
Midwest Sharp only recommends licensed online gambling apps in Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, and Iowa. Each app is licensed by its respective state government authority.

Midwest Online Gambling Overview

Four Midwest States currently offer at least some form of legal online gambling. Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, and Iowa each offer mobile sports betting options, with some states offering a dozen or more apps to sports fans. Michigan also legalized and launched online casino apps and poker sites. Both Indiana and Illinois have introduced bills on the state level to introduce online casino games as well. Moreover, Ohio looks poised to be the next state in the region to offer bettors legal sportsbook apps.

Although once available only in Nevada and east coast states like New Jersey and Pennsylvania, the Midwest region is shaping up to be a strong option for sports bettors and casino players. Backed by a long-standing tradition of sports, both at the professional level and collegiate level, the Midwest is one of the most progressive regions in the US for safe, legal online gambling.

Recent Updates In Online Gambling And Sports Betting

  • August 2021 – Caesars Entertainment, which acquired William Hill in April, officially launched its rebranded sportsbook, Caesars Sportsbook by William Hill in Illinois and Caesars Sportsbook in Indiana, Iowa, and Michigan.
  • April 2021Ohio is expected to unveil its legislation to advance legal sports betting with Governor Mike DeWine expressing his support.
  • April 4, 2021 – Illinois Governor Pritzker reinstated the requirement for in-person registration for online sports betting apps. All new bettors in Illinois now need to visit the retail casino or sportsbook to complete registration before placing their first wager.
  • March 22, 2021BetMGM Poker launched in Michigan, becoming the second online poker app in the state, alongside PokerStars.
  • February 2021 – Michigan records $300M of mobile sports betting handle in its first full month of legal betting, alongside mobile casino earnings of $75 million.
  • February 2021 – Illinois introduced legislation to legalize online casinos after a successful online sports betting launch in 2021. House Bill 3142 would allow retail casinos and racetracks to offer up to three skins for online casino apps.
  • January 2021 – Indiana legislators introduce a bill to legalize online casinos and online poker apps. Senate Bill 417 would allow the state’s casinos and racinos to apply for a license.
  • December 2020 – Illinois registered $1.8B in overall betting handle during 2020.

Midwest Gambling News

Iowa sports betting handle

Iowa Sports Betting Handle Eclipses $2 Billion

January 13, 2022
For Iowa, 2021 went out like a lion (or maybe a Hawkeye?), as the state saw more than $266.5 million wagered on sports in December. According to the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission, that lifted the state over the $2 billion mark for sports betting in 2021. Iowa was one of 10 states to surpass […]
Illinois to allow limited college sports betting

Illinois To Allow Limited In-State College Sports Betting

December 22, 2021
One of the glaring flaws in Illinois sports betting law has been rectified. Following the passage of a new law, bettors will soon be able to wager on in-state college teams in Illinois, such as the Fighting Illini, Northwestern, and Loyola University in Chicago. On Dec. 17, Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed HB 3136 into law, […]

Best Online Sports Betting Apps – 2021

Best For Deposit Match Bonus Offer

$250 Deposit Match Offer On The BetRivers Website

Available On: Web Browser, Android, iOS (IL, IA)

States Allowed: Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa

Best For Deposit Match Bonus Offer

BetRivers Sportsbook

Deposit Match


100% Up To $250

The BetRivers Sportsbook is available in Michigan, Indiana, Iowa, and Illinois and offers new bettors in each state with one of the most accessible sportsbook bonus offers. Claim a 100% deposit match bonus up to $250 with only a 1x playthrough. BetRivers offers state-specific apps so be sure to download the correct app for your state.

Terms and Conditions Apply. 21+

Best For Market Depth And Variety

Up to $5000 Risk Free Bet Offer

Available On: Web Browser, iOS, Android

States Allowed: MI, IL, IN, IA, NV, NJ, TN, VA, WV, CO, DC

Best For Market Depth And Variety

Caesars Sportsbook

Risk Free Bet


$5000 bet offer

Caesars Sportsbook, known as Caesars Sportsbook by William Hill in Indiana, is the recently-released product of Caesar Entertainment’s acquisition of William Hill. Powered by Liberty technology, it offers hundreds of betting options along with access to Caesars Rewards, one of the best programs in the industry. It has the largest number of retail sportsbooks across the country, best known for its flagship locations in Las Vegas. Bettors in all Caesars Sportsbook states can claim up to $5000.

Terms and Conditions Apply. 21+

Best For Strong App And User Interface

Up to $1,000 Risk Free Bet

Available On: Web Browser, iOS, Android

States Allowed: Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa

Best For Strong App And User Interface

FanDuel Sportsbook

Risk Free Bet


Up To $1,000 Bonus Offer

FanDuel is one of the top names in the industry. Having made a name for itself initially in the Daily Fantasy Sports industry, FanDuel now has one of the strongest, most user-friendly apps in online gaming. Consistently rated high in the Apple iOS store, the FanDuel app is one of the most easily accessible to new bettors. In Michigan, FanDuel also offers its casino games.

Terms and Conditions Apply. 21+

Michigan Online Gambling

Michigan took a big step in 2019 by legalizing both online casino gambling (including online poker) and online sports betting. The Michigan Gaming Control Board approved about a dozen online gaming companies to launch in January 2021, with more expected to launch during the year.

Some of the top brands that launched on day one included Golden Nugget Online Gaming, BetRivers, FanDuel, BetMGM, and FanDuel. Michigan also offers two top-notch poker apps including BetMGM Poker and PokerStars.

Check out our Complete Guide To Michigan Online Gambling

Indiana Sports Betting

Indiana has 15 casinos, some land-based, and some riverboat properties. As far as online gambling goes, The Hoosier State had a headstart on its Midwest neighbors, launching online sports betting in October 2019. With land-based gambling, pari-mutuel wagering (both on property and online), and online sports betting, Indiana’s gaming laws are similar to its neighbors and sports bettors have access to a wide variety of bonus offers.

See our complete Guide to Indiana Sports Betting.

Iowa Sports Betting

Across the Mississippi, Iowa borders Illinois to the west. Iowa allows sports betting both on-property and online. In 2021, Iowa bettors needed to complete registration in person by visiting a retail casino or sportsbook location. This restriction lifted in January 2021. This means that Iowa sports betting is more accessible than ever to sports fans.

Iowa players can now download sports betting apps and start betting from home. This includes the opportunity for new players to claim sports betting bonuses.

The Hawkeye State has 10 casinos, too, giving nearby states a run for their money with a strong gambling presence.

See our Complete Guide To Indiana Online Sports Betting And Gambling.

Illinois Sports Betting

Right now, Illinois residents can enjoy online horse race betting, online sports betting, and sweepstakes casinos.

Sports betting was the most recent form of online gaming to arrive in The Prairie State. Governor J.B. Pritzker signed a new bill last year that allowed for six new land-based casinos to come to the state while also legalizing sports betting.

Since then, retail sportsbooks have popped up in the state, and BetRivers launched the first online sportsbook. FanDuel and DraftKings, two industry leaders, joined the fray shortly after with their own online offerings. Australian sportsbook operator PointsBet launched an online offering on September 12. William Hill entered the market on September 15 and Barstool Sportsbook in March 2021. William Hill, after being acquired by Caesar Entertainment in April 2021, was rebranded and went live as Caesars Sportsbook in early August 2021. Other major players are expected to carve out an audience in Illinois in 2021 as the state continues to embrace online sports betting.

For now, sports betting and land-based expansion appear to be the state’s focus. No word yet on whether Illinois will legalize online casino gaming, although a bill was introduced in January 2021 that could legalize online casino apps.

Status Of Online Gambling In Other States


Ohio is poised to become the next Midwest state to offer legalized sports betting. Governor DeWine stated publicly that it is not a matter of if, but when. A bill is currently working its way through the state legislature, which could be voted on as early as April 2021.


It was looking hopeful for Kansas sports fans who anticipated Kansas would also join the lineup of its Midwest neighbors in legalizing sports betting. Although overwhelmingly approved by the Kansas State Senate, the bill died in the House. It is not anticipated that the bill will be revived during 2021.


Wisconsin only allows tribal land-based casinos. There are no commercial properties in the state. When it comes to online gambling, the landscape in Illinois’ northern neighbor is sparse. Online gambling is illegal, and a recent attempt in 2017 to change that stance failed.


The Show-Me State won’t actually show you all that much when it comes to gambling. Riverboat casinos are legal, and Missouri has more than a dozen of them. Online gambling is neither prohibited nor allowed by Missouri law, and there have been no recent moves to change that. Online gambling in the state remains legally risky.

Sports fans in the St. Louis area, though, can access Illinois sportsbooks if they travel across the border. Or, they can visit DraftKings at Casino Queen in East St. Louis.


Illinois’ southernmost neighbor, Kentucky has a conservative gambling outlook. The state only allows online betting on horse races or lottery games. There are no casinos–land-based or online–in Kentucky. That looks unlikely to change any time soon. Kentucky gamblers can enjoy horse race wagering at one of the state’s six race tracks.

Online Sports Betting & Gambling FAQs

Is it legal to gamble online in the US?

Since 2018, it has been legal to gamble online in the US. Each state must come up with its own rules and regulations regarding whether online casinos and online sports betting are legal. Once a state legalizes any form of online gambling, the state will license and regulate each company to provide online gambling services.

Michigan is the latest of the Midwest States to legalize and launch online gambling apps and it looks like Ohio could be next.

Is it safe to gamble online?

Yes, so long as you use licensed and regulated online gambling apps. For example, the Michigan Gaming Control Board licenses and regulates all online sports betting and casino apps that are available in the state.

Midwest Sharp doesn’t recommend any offshore or illegal sites. It’s just not worth the risk in the Midwest, where there are a variety of sports betting apps in most states in the region.

How old do I have to be to use online gambling apps?

21. All bettors must be at least 21 years old to use online gambling apps. The app will ask for certain identification information in order to prove your age.

Do I have to pay taxes if I win?

Yes. You must report gambling winnings as income tax in most states. You also need to report winning. You also must pay Federal income tax on any gambling winnings, either online or at a land-based casino.