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INDIANAPOLIS – Indiana is benefiting from the success of sports betting during the pandemic.

Revenue is already back to the level it was before COVID-19, and that’s without the NFL.

“When the pandemic hit, and the sports started shutting down, it definitely hit home for a lot of people,” said Indiana sports gambler Gary Andrew.

“Definitely not fun going four-plus months without sports,” added Joseph Smith, another Hoosier sports better.

As sports return, fans are also ready to get back in the game, even if they can’t physically be there due to capacity limits.

“You may not have 35,000 fans in the audience, but you could have 35,000 people betting on the game,” said State Senator Ron Alting, Lafayette (R).

Alting is counting on people using this time to place bets from home. Part of the revenue from sports betting goes into Indiana’s general fund, which can be used for a number of different services like education and healthcare.

“Every dollar coming up in a budget year, which this is, is really going to be needed, so we are at least thankful that sports betting is back up and running,” said Sen. Alting.

Last month’s numbers show sports betting has bounced back to pre-pandemic success, totaling more than $169 million in one month.

“We’re going to see those numbers continue to rise,” said Alting as he explained the NFL wasn’t in action last month.

For Gary Andrew, sports betting is not only fun, but right now, it’s a way to make some extra cash.

“Recently, I’ve been on a streak, so, we’ll not jinx it,” said Andrew.

Smith is covering his bases. While he may lose a bet or two, he decided to invest in some of the sports gaming companies as this industry is expected to grow.

“Definitely worth it and just makes sports a little more enjoyable,” said Smith.

Both men recommend playing responsibly. In Indiana, 3.33% of the sports betting tax goes to an addiction services fund.