KNOXVILLE, Tenn — As if we needed another reason to cheer on the Vols, imagine having money on the game.
Sports betting is now legal in Tennessee after a bill submitted by Rep. Rick Staples (D-Knoxville) became law.
He hopes the state gets a vendor up and running by November, but it's looking like January may be more likely.
Staples said vendors are already lining up for state approval, but there are rules for them and for the casual bettor.
For one: it's digital only. There won't be bookies on Neyland Drive or casinos in Memphis.
And not everyone can bet.
"If you are part of any sports education, professional and especially collegiate you cannot bet. The qualifications and verification are pretty stringent," Staples said.
Bettors must be 21 or older, use a licensed vendor and not be involved with the sport they're betting on.
For college sports, bets are only allowed on the end result.
"You can't bet on how many yards an individual is going to throw for and or run or how many catches that can you for professional sports," Staples said.
The money from a 20-percent tax on vendors goes mostly to the lottery education fund and local road projects.
About five percent goes to addiction treatment.
"Gambling addiction is very similar to alcohol and drugs where you have that sense of euphoria and feeling good and you keep on wanting to chase it," Sean Doesburg, a care counselor at Cornerstone of Recovery, said.
"You keep wanting to win, you keep wanting to get that money you're chasing that first high you got from your first win. That's the same as alcohol and drug addiction," he said.
He said just like other addictions, help is available for those addicted to gambling as well.