Thursday, January 17, 2013

An Academic Money Pit

The Delta Cost Project at the American Institutes for Research has released a report that shows that for most universities, athletics are a drain on the university rather than a source of revenue. Some highlights:
In each of the six “power conferences” that form the Bowl Championship Series (BCS)—Southeastern (SEC), Big 12, Pacific-10, Atlantic Coast (ACC), Big Ten, and Big East—median athletic spending per athlete topped $100,000 in 2010. (p. 6)
This means that some of these schools were spending more on the student athletes than they were on some of their faculty. The SEC spends 12.2 times as much on student athletes as they do on regular students, a median of $163,931 per student athlete.

In fairness, the universities are not supposed to be paying the student athletes and most of the athletes do not see a dime of the funds. Some of that money goes to feed and house the athletes and for the travel to their games. A good deal of that money goes to pay the exorbitant salaries of the coaches.

Some of the money comes from television contracts, and some of the money comes from ticket sales. Yet
more than 70 percent of athletic budgets in the smaller FCS and DI-NF programs came from revenues “allocated” by the university; this athletic subsidy includes money from student fees, institutional support, and government appropriations. (pp. 8-9)
This means that the regular students are paying for the athletes. Given the massive increases in what students are being charged at most universities, that is sickening.