Big 12 Expansion Candidates Subsidize a Lot of Money

This picture has nothing to do with the story. It’s a lot of money.

USA Today has their breakdown of all finances for NCAA institutions and the one figure that I want you to focus on was the percentage of the subsidy. When we last left this situation, we took a close look at Texas Tech’s books and we wondered about the subsidy of about $4.3 million, which made up 4.33% of the overall budget. Turns out, that’s pretty much okay in the grand scheme of things. What I want you to look at is the subsidy percentages for the programs that want in the Big 12.

Connecticut = $28,070,681 and 38.90%
Cincinnati = $23,182,129 and 44.13%
South Florida = $21,774,572 = 47.88%
Memphis = $18,187,902 = 41.88%
Houston = $25,994,014 = 58.00%
Central Florida = $21,774,572 = 48.14%

This is all part of a larger USA Today story by Erik Brady, Steve Berkowitz and Jodi Upton which details how schools are spending more than they’re bringing in:

Over the past 11 years for which USA TODAY Sports has compiled their NCAA financial reports, public schools in Division I have spent $71.3 billion on athletics — roughly the combined GDP of Serbia and Estonia. Add in athletics spending at private schools, which don’t have to release their figures publicly, and that’s probably around $100 billion.

Zimbalist says athletics departments simply can’t keep spending so much. “Politically, it’s not sustainable,” he says. “Legally, it’s not sustainable. Economically, it’s not sustainable.”

Zimbalist says he is working to try to get the American Council on Education, a consortium of presidents, and the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges, a consortium of boards of trustees, to support Dent’s bill. He thinks presidents and boards will need to work collectively if they are to forge real change.

“I think that everybody realizes now” that change is coming, he says. “College presidents know they can’t continue financially” the way things are. “Individual presidents can’t do anything. They’ve tried in the past, and all they’ve ended up doing is getting themselves fired.”

We’ve somewhat fallen over ourselves with what we think of Kirby Hocutt in terms of what he’s done in terms of hiring coaches and how he’s gotten his man, but I think more important than all of that, is the idea that Hocutt has put Texas Tech in a sustainable situation where the athletic program is not spending more than it brings in and Texas Tech is not writing checks it’s arse can’t cash.


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