LAS VEGAS (AP) -- Sports fans bet a record $98.9 million at Nevada casinos on the Super Bowl, the Nevada Gaming Control Board said Monday.
Unaudited tallies show 183 sports books made $7.2 million on the football action. The San Francisco 49ers started out as a 5-point favorite but the Baltimore Ravens won 34-31.
Odds makers say California fans drove the unprecedented handle, flooding Las Vegas and the Lake Tahoe area with wagers on the hometown team, which hadn't been in the Super Bowl since 1995.
"Northern Nevada gets swamped with 49er money," LVH book director Jay Kornegay said.
Bookmakers speculated that the popularity of 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who played his college football at Nevada, drove some of the betting among locals.
The previous record was set in 2006, when gamblers wagered $94.5 million on the Super Bowl between the Seattle Seahawks and the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Book makers said they took a beating this year on proposition bets, including a long-shot on whether there would be a safety. Ravens punter Sam Koch took a safety for the final score with 4 seconds left.
Casinos retained 7.3 percent of the millions wagered, slightly less than the average hold during the past decade, which has fluctuated from lows of negative 2.8 percent to highs of 17 percent.
The 65 points scored in New Orleans easily exceeded the over/under of 49. Gamblers bet the line down 1
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