2023 National Spelling Bee Odds, Prop Bets and Predictions

2023 Scripps Spelling Bee Odds

Schools might be heading into their summer break, but that doesn’t mean we can’t all still learn a thing or two. In fact, we can all learn how some elementary school kids are smarter than us.

If you disagree with this statement, then we dare you to check out the 2023 Scripps National Spelling Bee on June 1.

While the Spelling Bee makes some of us feel awfully stupid, we are smart enough to know that online betting sites are providing us with an opportunity to make some cash as they’ve released their latest Spelling Bee prop bets.

Let’s take a closer look at the available 2023 Scripps National Spelling Bee betting odds, courtesy of BetUS, and see where we can make some m-o-n-e-y.

When Is The National Spelling Bee 2023?

On Thursday, June 1, the Scripps National Spelling Bee Finals will take place at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center1.

There is a lot of hard work required to make it to the National Finals in Maryland. For the 2023 Spelling bee, 231 spellers open the preliminary round this week.

By the time the Spelling Bee reaches the National Finals on Thursday, the field will be reduced to fewer than 50 kids. At the end of the night, there will be only one kid still standing.

Last year, it was the first-ever lightning-round tiebreaker in Scripps National Spelling Bee history. The 231st speller, Harini Logan, outlasted Vikram Raju with 21 correct words to win by six words in the spell-off2.

What Channel Is The National Spelling Bee On?

The 2023 Scripps National Spelling Bee is being broadcasted exclusively on ION. The network, which is owned by Scripps, can be found on over-the-air TV in your local area.

Three days of Spelling Bee action will be broadcasted on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. There is around the clock coverage of the preliminaries beginning at 9:00 a.m. ET on Tuesday. On Wednesday, May 31, the semifinals will be showcased on ION at 8 p.m. ET.

You can watch the Scripps Spelling Bee National Finals the following night live at 8:00 p.m. ET.3 On Thursday night, a new champion will be crowned and awarded the grand prize of $50,000.

Will The Winner Be Male or Female?


Entertaining betting sites suggest that this prop bet is going to be a toss-up between a male and a female winner. If this prop is still on the board on Nationals Final night, then investigate how many males and females remain in the competition.

Playing the numbers game will be the best way to approach this Spelling Bee prop bet. Currently, we are a couple of days out from the semifinals.

Let’s take a quick look back at the recent winners of the Spelling Bee. The girls have won the last two Scripps Spelling Bee National Finals. A year prior to Logan’s win, Zaila Avant-garde brought home the top prize in 2021.

This was the first time since 2012 that females have won consecutive titles at the Spelling Bee. The girls went on a massive tear from 2008 to 2012. They won four straight Spelling Bee championships, leaving the boys weeping in their wake.

Following Snigdha Nandipati’s win in 2012, there have only been two solo male champs. In 2014 and 2016, two males shared the trophy. Meanwhile, the Spelling Bee saw a mix of female and male co-winners in 2015 and 20194.

The girls had a strong run over the last two years. However, expect the boys to fight back with strong work this year. In 2023, we are betting on the winning speller being a male.

The Bet

Will There Be Co-Champions?


We had a thrilling spell-off to decide the 2022 Scripps National Spelling Bee. It was a much more entertaining conclusion than awarding co-champions.

That being said, co-champions at the Scripps National Spelling Bee are not all that uncommon. From 2014 to 2019, there were four co-champions. In 2019, eight different spellers shared the grand prize.

Since then, we’ve had two solo champs with Avant-garde and Logan. In 1962, Nettie Crawford and Michael Day were the third co-champions in Spelling Bee history5.

After this result, there weren’t co-champs again until 2014. A co-champion is more likely to happen in this era of the Scripps National Spelling Bee.

Nevertheless, the more likely scenario is a solo champ at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center. There is strong enough value at -130 odds to back a solo winner in 2023.

The Bet

Winner To Be Wearing Glasses?


Last year, you were a winner if you had the wearing glasses prop bet. Logan wore glasses throughout the competition, so congratulations to those bettors.

However, it was a different story a year earlier. Avant-garde did not wear glasses after there were eight co-champions in 2019. From 2014 to 2018, which includes the co-winners, four wore glasses and four didn’t.

There doesn’t appear to be much value in laying -140 odds on the winner having glasses. From recent history, it is certainly possible.

In what is going to be close to a coin flip, paying -140 isn’t a good bet. We will back no glasses being worn by the winner on Thursday night.

The Bet

Winner To Be Wearing Braces/Brackets?


If you go through the list of 321 spellers in this year’s event, a good percentage of them are wearing braces. This is despite some spellers not opening their mouths to smile. We can only assume there are many more with braces who aren’t opening their mouths.

Since 2012, at least three winners have worn braces. Two years ago, Avant-garde hoisted the Scripps National Spelling Bee trophy while wearing braces. Are we due for another this year?

Laying -220 odds makes little sense for a prop bet of this nature. There is no value on that bet. But we are getting some great value at +150 odds for the winner to be wearing braces or brackets.

If you are keeping track of our Spelling Bee prop bets, so far, we have a male winner with braces, without any vision problems.

The Bet

Will The Winning Word Be Singular or Plural?


The Spelling Bee betting odds are getting interesting now. We are wagering on whether the winning word will be singular or plural. This prop bet is truly only for the hardcore Spelling Bee bettors.

Without knowing the pool of words that will be included in the 2023 Scripps National Spelling Bee, it isn’t an easy bet. Last year, Logan won with a singular word, moorhen. That has typically been the case at the National Spelling Bee contest.

There have not been many plural words featured in the final round of the Spelling Bee. Across the last decade, singular words have dwarfed plural words without much competition.

Laying the juice here appears to be worth it in this spot. We predict the winning word of this year’s Scripps National Spelling Bee to be singular.

The Bet

Winning Word First Letter


In 2021 and 2022, it was the year of the ‘M’ at the Scripps National Spelling Bee. Moorhen and murraya were the winning words the last two years.

In 2019, there were eight winning words for all eight winners. Five of the letters were between A to H, one I to Q, and then two R to Z.

The most common starting letter for a word in English language is ‘S’6. In the game Wordle, words that begin with ‘S’ are used the most.

With a 18% frequency, it is 8% more frequent that ‘C’, the second-most common first letter of a word7. This does not guarantee a word beginning with ‘S’ will win. However, it does point us in the right direction.

Additionally, the R to Z prop bet is receiving the best price at +175 odds. This has to be the side to consider.

The Bet

Winning Word Total Letters

Over 10.5+150
Under 10.5-220

In the previous 12 winning words, there have been only three with more than 10 letters. All three words were in 2019 with the eight winners.

There were no winning words of more than 10 letters for the last four solo champions. A longer word doesn’t necessarily make it tougher to spell. Most of these words are tough regardless of their length.

In any event, the longer words have had a minute in the spotlight. From bougainvillea, aiguillette, pendeloque, and feldenkrais, there have been several winning words with more than 10 letters since 2016.

Let’s aim for another bet that is getting fairly decent value at +150 odds. Betting on too many big moneylines is not an effective betting strategy for this event. Take a chance with a long word to wrap up the 2023 Scripps National Spelling Bee.

The Bet
OVER 10.5


  1. National Finals | Scripps National Spelling Bee. Retrieved From “https://spellingbee.com/taxonomy/term/9

  2. Harini Logan wins National Spelling Bee in first ever lightning-round tiebreaker | The Guardian. Retrieved From “https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2022/jun/03/national-spelling-bee-harini-logan-tiebreaker

  3. How to Watch the Scripps National Spelling Bee | Scripps National Spelling Bee. Retrieved From “https://spellingbee.com/watch

  4. Former National Spelling Bee Champions | People. Retrieved From “https://people.com/human-interest/national-spelling-bee-champions-words-they-won-with/

  5. Scripps National Spelling Bee | Twitter. Retrieved From “https://twitter.com/ScrippsBee/status/634477938747023360

  6. Letter Frequency in the English Language | Notre Dame University. Retrieved From “https://www3.nd.edu/~busiforc/handouts/cryptography/letterfrequencies.html

  7. The Most Common First Letters In Wordle | Word Play. Retrieved From “https://wordplay.com/article/most-common-first-letters-in-wordle

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Kyle Eve
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Kyle Eve is a seasoned pro of The Sports Geek. Since joining the team in 2012, Kyle, has covered some of the biggest sporting events in the world. From the Super Bowl and World Series to March Madness, the NBA Finals, Kentucky Derby, and many more, Kyle has provided reliable analysis for millions of readers. After dedicating himself to hockey and football in high school, Kyle placed his first sports bet on his 18th birthday. Since then, he has spent his entire adult life devoting himself to becoming the best sports bettor and casino gambler possible. Kyle is from Windsor, ON, Canada

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