2022 Scripps Spelling Bee Odds, Prop Bets, and Predictions

National Spelling Bee 2022 Prop Bet Odds And Picks

Next week, hundreds of the world’s best spellers will gather in Maryland for the 92nd annual Scripps Spelling Bee. This competition has taken place every year since its inception in 1925, though this will mark the first in-person version since the last pre-Covid bee in 2019. The 2020 event was canceled, while last year’s was held (mostly) virtually.

That year, a whopping eight spellers tied for first place.
All eight of them made it successfully through 20 rounds without a mistake. Rather than trying to whittle down the field further, those running the show just decided to reward all eight finalists as champions. Last year, Zaila Avant-garde became the first African-American champion in the competition’s long history.

ESPN has been broadcasting the Scripps Spelling Bee every year since 1994. It’s on ESPN, so it must be a sport, right? As a result, you absolutely can find Scripps Spelling Bee odds at your favorite online sportsbooks. Bovada, BetOnline, and MyBookie are just a few of the spelling bee betting sites out there taking bets on the 2022 festivities.

Betting Site
Bonus Bet Now
1BetOnline Logo BetOnline

50% up to $1,000 Go to Site
2 Bovada

50% up to $1,000 Go to Site
3 BetUS

125% up to $2,500 Go to Site
4 Everygame

100% up to $500 Go to Site
5 SportsBetting.ag

100% up to $1,000 Go to Site
6 MyBookie

100% up to $1,000 Go to Site

How should you bet on the Scripps Spelling Bee? You’ve come to the right place.

Scripps Spelling Bee Winners

Between 1925 and 2013, the Scripps Spelling Bee featured co-champions on just three occasions.

Since 2014, however, we have seen multiple contestants win the competition four times, including the aforementioned eight-way tie in 2019. Six winners since 2014 are from Texas, including three back in ’19.

Here is the full list of Scripps Spelling Bee winners since 2000:

Winner Year
Zaila Avant-garde 2021
Rohan Raja 2019
Rishik Gandhasri 2019
Erin Howard 2019
Sohum Sukhatankar 2019
Christopher Serrao 2019
Shruthika Padhy 2019
Abhijay Kodali 2019
Saketh Sundar 2019
Karthik Nemmani 2018
Ananya Vinay 2017
Nihar Saireddy Janga 2016
Jairam Hathwar 2016
Gokul Venkatachalam 2015
Vanya Shivashankar 2015
Ansun Sujoe 2014
Sriram J. Hathwar 2014
Arvind Mahankali 2013
Snigdha Nandipati 2012
Sukanya Roy 2011
Anamika Veeramani 2010

Scripps National Spelling Bee Odds

Entertainment betting sites offer a number of unique ways to bet on the Scripps Spelling Bee.

While most sites won’t offer straight futures odds on the winner, you can bet on a number of bee-specific props ahead of next week’s main event. You can wager on whether the winner will wear glasses or not. You can bet the over/under on how many letters will be in the winning word. You can bet on the gender of the winner, or whether there will be multiple winners.

As you can see, Scripps Spelling Bee odds give you a variety of different ways to put money on the United States’ premier spelling competition!

Will the Winner Wear Glasses?


Grammar is nerdy. Sorry, but I don’t make the rules. For whatever reason, glasses have always been tied to nerd-dom, as well. I don’t really think this should be the case, of course, and that stigma seems to be waning as we progress as a society.

Anyway, there are Scripps Spelling Bee odds on whether the winner will be wearing glasses.

Avant-garde was not bespectacled, but five of the eight winners in 2019 were. Ditto for the winners in 2018 and 2017, but just one of the four winners in 2015 and 2016 wore lenses.

So, of the 15 bee champions since 2015, eight have been glasses wearers.

Essentially, this bet is a 50/50 shot, but the Scripps Spelling Bee odds don’t indicate as much. You’re only getting -150 odds on the winner wearing glasses, while no glasses sits at even-money. This looks like a pretty simple call.

Take the value on the 2022 champion to not wear bifocals at +100.

Best Bet:
No Glasses!

Number of Letters in the Winning Word

Over 9.5 letters:
Under 9.5 letters:

Without question, the spelling bee has gotten a lot harder over the years. I guess the showrunners thought all of these kids were a bunch of dumb dopes when they started this thing back in the 1920s when simple words like “knack,” “brethren,” and “promiscuous” were good enough to win it all.

Long words tend to be more difficult to spell, of course.

The more letters in a word, the more opportunities you’ll have to make a mistake. Avant-garde won the title last year when she correctly spelled “Murraya,” which is a relatively short seven-letter word. Of the eight winning words in 2019, half were at least 10 letters long.

We had incredibly long winning words in 2016, 2015, 2014, 2011, and 2005, as well.

Again, the Scripps National Spelling Bee odds say this one could legitimately go either way. The under on 9.5 letters is interestingly listed at even-money, while the over comes in at -140. With another bet looking like a legit 50/50 shot, why not simply side with the superior value?

In this case, that’s the under on 9.5 letters for the winning word.

Best Bet:
Under 9.5 Letters!

Will There Be Co-Champions?


Co-champions were unheard of through the first several decades of the spelling bee’s existence. However, these kids seem to be getting smarter and smarter. Four of the last seven Scripps Spelling Bees have featured multiple champions.

Avant-garde, last year’s sole winner, knows how to spell something in the neighborhood of 12,000 words. There’s a very good chance I don’t even know 12,000 words.

The bee doesn’t have any great tiebreaker scenarios. As long as the contestants keep correctly spelling words, they’ll stay alive. Eventually, the showrunners will throw in the towel and call it a draw, regardless of how many kids are left in the field.

Given how frequently we’ve had co-champions, the Scripps Spelling Bee odds on “yes” here really stand out at +250. The bee has crowned a lone spelling champion more often than not over the years, but it’s hard to ignore the recent trend in the opposite direction.

Best Bet:

Scripps Spelling Bee Words

Needless to say, a lot has changed at the Scripps National Spelling Bee since Betty Robinson won by correctly spelling “knack” in 1928. I guess the silent “K” is a bit tricky, but if you know, you know.

Those in charge of this thing have stepped it up in recent years, however. “Murraya” may not look like a complicated word, but would you have been able to spell it on the spot? Unless you’re a plant enthusiast, probably not.

Here is a complete list of the winning Scripps Spelling Bee words over the past 30 years:

  • Murraya
  • Odylic
  • Cernuous
  • Palama
  • Pendeloque
  • Aiguillette
  • Bougainvillea
  • Erysipelas
  • Auslaut
  • Koinonia
  • Marocain
  • Gesellschaft
  • Feldenkrais
  • Nunatak
  • Scherenschnitte
  • Feuilleton
  • Stichomythia
  • Knaidel
  • Guetapens
  • Cymotrichous
  • Stromuhr
  • Laodicean
  • Guerdon
  • Serrefine
  • Ursprache
  • Appoggiatura
  • Autochthonous
  • Pococurante
  • Prospicience
  • Succudaneum
  • Demarche
  • Logorrhea
  • Chiaroscurist
  • Euonym
  • Vivisepulture
  • Xanthosis
  • Antediluvian
  • Kamikaze


As you can see, the Scripps Spelling Bee winners these days really earn it. Frankly, it’s impressive enough that the people calling out the words can even pronounce something like “autochthonous.” Spelling it, on the spot, on national TV, in one try, is an incredible feat. Good luck betting on the 2022 Scripps National Spelling Bee!


Taylor Smith / Author

Taylor is a sports writer based in Southern California. While he primarily specializes in basketball, baseball and football, he will also dabble in things like soccer and politics from time to time. He has lived in just about every corner of the United States at one point or another, and he has been covering sports and sports betting for the better part of a decade. Taylor currently lives in Long Beach with his fiancé and their two cats.

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