Michigan State University (MSU) Athletics, MSU Sports Properties, and Caesars Entertainment announced a multi-year partnership making Caesars the exclusive sports betting and iGaming partner of MSU Athletics.
Among the most notable benefits of the deal are fan engagement opportunities, a new premium seating area at Spartan Stadium, and an expansion of responsible sports gaming education. Caesars will also provide financial support to MSU in order to enable student scholarships, internships, and further professional development opportunities for students wishing to pursue a career in the sports industry.
This is not the first gambling agreement of its kind by a US college with a sportsbook operator.
Some notable examples include a partnership between William Hill, the University of Nevada-Las Vegas (UNLV), and the University of Nevada-Reno (UNR) in 2017. PointsBet also signed deals with the University of Colorado in September 2020 and the University of Maryland in December 2021. And Caesars partnered with Louisiana State University (LSU) Athletics in September 2021.
“Michigan State has a proud tradition of excellence and partnering with an internationally recognized brand in college athletics is a great opportunity for us,” said Eric Hession, co-president of Caesars Digital.
“The Spartan fan base and alumni network are passionate and well-established across the country. We look forward to building upon our connection with them while strengthening the legacy we hold in the state of Michigan and advancing scholarship opportunities through this partnership.”
The partnership was facilitated by Playfly Sports, which holds multimedia rights for the university.
Caesars Sportsbook will gain significant exposure on the entire MSU campus. This includes broadcast and digital content across MSU athletics, as well as signage in the university’s basketball, football, and hockey facilities. In return, customers of the platform will be able to unlock hospitality assets and VIP experiences at MSU through the Caesars Rewards loyalty program.
The online gambling giant has also hinted at various upcoming special promotional offers on mobile sports betting, iGaming, and the World Series of Poker (WSOP) online poker platform for Spartan supporters to activate multiple verticals of its brand at once.
“The opportunity to partner with Caesars, a leading force in the sports and entertainment industry, will help enhance gameday experiences for Spartan fans and provide significant resources to support the growing needs of each of our varsity programs,” said Alan Haller, Michigan State Vice President and Director of Athletics.
“We are excited to be on the cutting edge of this innovative opportunity, while recognizing the importance of Caesars’ commitment to responsible sports gaming education, both for the student-athletes and the university community as a whole.”
Caesars Sportsbook is also committed to the expansion of responsible sports gaming and education for the university’s community. They will be working together closely with the Michigan Association on Problem Gambling (MAPG) and regulators to strengthen the awareness of existing responsible gambling tools and provide responsible gaming resources in the entire state.
By making student scholarships and internships available through their funding, the operator also invests in the future of the new generation to create benefits for all parties involved. It may even spark the interest of alumni to start a career in one of the fastest-growing industries on American soil.