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Saturday, March 28, 2020

ESPN puts XFL betting lines on scorebug during league’s debut

Both ESPN and the XFL are clearly embracing gambling interest in their games, and leaning right into it by putting the odds on the scoreboard.

During the league’s debut game on ABC, the scorebug put the line, as well as the over/under, up at all times to allow fans and gamblers to get a sense of where things stood.

The broadcast also showed and discussed the betting odds on who would win the inaugural XFL championship during the first quarter.

The XFL is embracing the differences it has with the NFL, and this is a major one. They likely figure that if they can draw in some gamblers, the league is likely to do better in TV ratings and drum up more interest. It’s also a way for casual fans tuning in for the first time to know who’s expected to win and when they may be watching an upset.

In contrast, the NFL, like every other American professional sports league, is much more shy about discussing gambling and odds during their telecasts. It’s an interesting, but sensible strategy for the XFL to draw more attention to it.

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