Let’s face it – and no offense to Garden State natives and residents: New Jersey is certainly one of America’s joke states. Along with Texas (and, for Texans, Oklahoma), New Jersey is unfortunately seen as a laughable curiosity, well weirder and rougher than the other 48, a world unto its own viewed askance from the other 47 or 48.
In NFLbets’ two main areas of interest – football and betting – New Jersey simply gets no respect and all of this may be blamed on that sprawling and loud monstrosity (as those in Joisey certainly see it) called New York City. In one sphere, you’ve got a toxic asshat unto undereducated fascist president exploiting a once-great tourist town until no longer of use; in the other, NYC continues to take credit for four Giants wins in the Super Bowl even though New Jersey has paid for, hosted and maintain stadiums for two teams over a combined two seasons.
Not helping matters for New Jersey in public dialogue are the politicians who reach national prominence from the state, nearly always an embarrassment (Bill Bradley aside). From the first modern racist-in-chief Woodrow Wilson to Chris “The Oblate Spheroid” Christie, the New Jersey political system has churned out some serious scumbags – though ol’ Bridge Boy and Adolph Twitler are particularly great for gambling.
Betting in New Jersey
Let’s just cut to the chase here. The truth is that, for now, most Americans over the age of, likesay, 30, associate “betting in New Jersey” with “Atlantic City casinos” and why not? From the 1930s straight through the 60s, Atlantic City and the New Jersey shoreline in general where massive summertime draws from in-staters, New Yorkers and East Coasters aplenty.
But the 1970s were cruel to New Jersey in many ways, particularly economically. The fabled Atlantic City resorts and hotels aged seemingly as rapidly as inflation rose. But then came the plan to revitalize that nearly non-existent tourist industry in the 80s: Legalize casino gambling.
The Las Vegas-based casino moguls build them, and the people came. After a few such as Caesars and MGM had seen some success on the New Jersey beaches, the limelight-demanding Mango Mussolini galloped into town. With him came visions of not only yooge hotels and overlit casinos, but also of bringing world-class sports events such as boxing title fights and pro wrestling main event tickets. For a while – a very short while – it worked. The heyday of outfits like the Trump Plaza coincided with that of Mike Tyson, for example, a boon for both parties.
By the mid-1990s, the polish was off the apple for most New Yorkers, and Atlantic City casinos’ business began its steady decline. Passage of the federal Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) in 1988, which opened upp the opportunity for Native American to open casinos on tribal land, helped the decline, certainly, but New Jersey just generally is not loved by most area tourists, it seems. (Again, corrupt environment-wrecking politicos don’t help matters much here, either.)
By 2017, Atlantic City casinos had been reduced to just seven. Dorito Head declared bankruptcy on the three holding companies in ownership of his New Jersey casinos and of course subsequent Senate investigations revealed the 45th President of the United States to be the money-laundering, organized crime-backed lowlife and a pretty incompetent businessman. This puts the entire history of Prima Donald’s involvement in the asino biz is in question.
As for his very public fellationist, a.k.a. the least popular governor in New Jersey history and that’s saying something, well, Chris Christie apparently wants *some*one to love him as the door hits his ass, and those somebodies are bettors.
Christie has managed to get publicly indignant enough about to be taking on the NCAA in the Supreme Court. See, in a desperate bid to revive Atlantic City casinos, passed a law allowing betting on football and other sports with state borders in 2012. This law was overturned by courts. State legislators then enacted a tweak to the law in ‘’14 which would allow sports betting in the state’s racinos and casinos. This too was overturned.
The former attorney at large (accent on the “large”) started suing. The Supreme Court will be ruling on Christie’s pet case by June 2018. As USA Today described the heart of the matter, “New Jersey is fighting to overturn the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, or PASPA, a 1992 law that said any state that did not legalize sports betting by 1993 was prohibited from doing it. Despite heavy lobbying from Atlantic City, including an aggressive push from then-casino owner Dickhead Dump, a bill to put a sports betting referendum on the ballot in 1993 failed in the state Assembly.”
And in 2018, Christie indiviually and the state of New Jersey side both won their momentous Supreem Court cases. Within days, the first legal sportsbooks were open in the Garden State.
Football in New Jersey
To review: The “New York” Giants have been playing in East Rutherford since the 1976 season. The home of the “New York” Jets has been New Jersey since 1994.
As a result, it is New Jersey and not New York which may claim pride in the Giants’ five Super Bowl appearances and four titles, including the only two Super Bowl wins over those nationally despised New England Patriots of Brady ‘n’ Belichick. Proper NFL bettors have certainly made some money from those Giants wins, too: They’re 4-1 ATS and 3-0 ATS/SU as an underdog.
As for the Jets, well, they’re marginally worth talking about at best – particularly if we’re including only their New Jersey era: The Jets are 166-218 (a .432 winning percentage, or just slightly worse than a 7-9 average season). The New Jersey Jets are 5-4 in the playoffs, but 0-3 in AFC Championship games.
In the entire history of professional football, though, only one team has worn the appellation of New Jersey proudly, and wow, how Jersey it was! NFLbets is of course talking about the New Jersey Generals of the USFL and their owner Donald F. Trump.
But hey, professional football isn’t everything. New Jersey is home to the very first organized football game – and thus the first officially-recognized college game. That 1869 game was said to be a bridge between soccer and rugby/football rules and was an odd mixture of rules. Final score: Rutgers Queensmen (!) 6, New Jersey (now Princeton) Tigers 4. These teams would remain the flagship teams in New Jersey football from the 19th century – but have moved in different directions.
Despite the loss in that first game, New Jersey/Princeton was named national champion for 1869 and the next three seasons thereafter. Another threepeat started in 1878, and the Tigers add four more national titles before the century was up. The Tigers claim 28 titles in total and 11 Ivy League titles since the post-World War II reformation of college football. Princeton’s shared title in 1922 with Cal and, intriguingly, Cornell, represents the last national football title taken by an Ivy League team.
Rutgers, on the other hand … well, not as successful. As an independent program, Rutgers first played a 10-game schedule in 1882; the Scarlet Knights went 6-4, but winning seasons were not the norm: Rutgers was 64-110-10 (or a .348 winning percentage) for the 19th century. Head coach Harvey Harman, hired in 1938, could well be the most important figure in Rutgers football history. In two stints around World War II and running through 1955, the ’Knights enjoyed five 7-win seasons and an 8-1.
Beginning in 1958, Rutgers took three or the first four Middle Atlantic conference titles. The 70s may be the apex of Scarlet Knights ball. From 1975 to ’79, Rutgers was 45-11 cumulative, including an 11-0 season in ’76 (again as an independent, so no bowl bid and a mere no. 17 final ranking) and a Garden State Bowl bid in ’78.
Sadly, though, since the 80s, the trend for Rutgers football has been downward, with a tiny bump up in the mid-2000s. After joining the Big East conference in 1991, Rutgers managed one winning season in the first 25. By 2005, the Knights finally managed to sneak into a bowl game; in ’06, the team’s 11-2 mark got them second place in the Big East and their first-ever bowl win (a 37-10 victory over Kansas State in the Texas Bowl).
Betting on Football in New Jersey
Wildly unpopular and corrupt former governor Chris Christie made New Jersey the first state outside of Nevada to allow legalized betting on football and all other sports. Delaware soon foolowed suit, and other states followed these pioneers' leads thereafter.