At the M resort, March Madness is carrying over to the race and sports book’s pride and joy – in-game wagering.
"It’s catching on faster than I thought it would," said Mike Colbert, race and sports manager at M. "We’ve been doing two games in each region for a total of eight both on Thursday and Friday. We need more tablets so everyone can make their wagers. That’s something I never would have thought we had to get so fast."
The in-game wagering at M was inaugurated for the NCAA men’s basketball tournament and is currently handling only point spread, money line and totals. Soon the concept will carry over to proposition bets involving teams and individual players.
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"We will keep working at it until it’s perfect," Colbert said. "We wanted to keep it simple for now, but the point spread, money line and totals are constantly changing during the game. The numbers are all automated so the computer spits it out as the game progresses. Everybody behind the counter in the book is really enjoying it and the crowds love it."
The updated numbers for in-game wagering are being handled by Las Vegas Sports Consultants. "They operate the computer that everyone sees," Colbert said. "We are the first customer of LVSC and glad we don’t have to worry about it."
Colbert said the choice of games basically came down to what was considered to be the most competitive. Among Friday’s in-game list were Arizona State-Temple and West Virginia-Dayton. On Thursday, there was plenty of in-game wagering on Maryland-California, Purdue-Northern Iowa, Western Kentucky-Illinois and UCLA-VCU.
"Any game that goes back and forth brings out more bets," Colbert said. "The price appears on the tablets and changes for every basket. So far it’s been a big hit and will definitely change the way people bet in this town. I thought it would take longer to catch on, but interest is moving fast."