College Athletics Construction Roundup

College Athletics Construction Roundup: May 2015

College Athletics Construction RoundupThe “College Athletics Construction Roundup” is a monthly series on the construction of intercollegiate athletics facilities. Each month we’ll provide a list of announced, in progress and recently completed athletic construction projects from around the country. You can view previous editions of the “College Athletics Construction Roundup” here.

Master Plan

Ball State raised more than $20 million for use towards six projects benefiting nine teams. Upgrades and renovations will or have taken place at the following facilities: Ronald E. and Joan M. Venderly Football Team Complex, Worthen Arena, Ball Diamond and the golf practice facility at Delaware Country Club.

William & Mary released a report outlining what will be needed for future success of its athletic programs. Among the $125 million worth of facility needs are a new multi-sport indoor facility and the renovation or replacement of both the swimming facility and William & Mary Hall.

Sam Houston State will install new scoreboards in three facilities: Bowers Stadium, Johnson Coliseum and Bearkat Softball Complex. The Bowers Stadium LED scoreboard is expected to be the largest in FCS. All work should be completed in time for the 2015-2016 seasons.

Continue reading

College Football Playoff, College Football Playoff Revenue

College Football Playoff Revenue Makes Every Conference Richer, Except One

College Football Playoff, College Football Playoff RevenueWhich conferences benefitted the most from the transition to the College Football Playoff?

It depends on how you look at it.

The Mountain West saw the largest percentage increase in revenue from $3.6 million to $23.5 million, a 553 percent increase. It was the Pac-12, however, who saw the largest increase in pure dollar and cents with a $41.4 million increase.

Click here to continue reading my piece on Outkick the Coverage on FoxSports.com.

Full conference-by-conference financials for the College Football Playoff vs. the Bowl Championship Series now available here.

College Athletics Construction Roundup

College Athletics Construction Roundup: April 2015

College Athletics Construction RoundupThe “College Athletics Construction Roundup” is a monthly series on the construction of intercollegiate athletics facilities. Each month we’ll provide a list of announced, in progress and recently completed athletic construction projects from around the country. You can view previous editions of the “College Athletics Construction Roundup” here.

Football

Oklahoma regents approved a two-phase renovation to the Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium. The $160 million Phase I will increase capacity to over 84,000. The new south end zone will feature additional suites, loge boxes and club seating.

Oklahoma Memorial Stadium Reno
Rendering for Oklahoma Memorial Stadium renovation : south end zone interior. See more at gmofs.com.

Iowa State will install a new LED video board and ribbon displays in Jack Trice Stadium. The video board will be 36’ high by 79’ wide. Work will be completed this summer.

Virginia Tech’s indoor practice facility remains on schedule for a July 1 completion. The $21 million facility will accommodate soccer and lacrosse in addition to football.

Nevada has begun its final push to raise $4 million needed for a new video board and sound system at Mackay Stadium. The school has set a May 1 deadline for the funds to be raised for the work to be completed in time for the 2015 football season. Continue reading

College Athletics Construction Roundup

College Athletics Construction Roundup: March 2015

College Athletics Construction RoundupThe “College Athletics Construction Roundup” is a monthly series on the construction of intercollegiate athletics facilities. Each month we’ll provide a list of announced, in progress and recently completed athletic construction projects from around the country. You can view previous editions of the “College Athletics Construction Roundup” here.

Football

Auburn trustees approved $13.9 million for a new video board and electronic ribbons along the upper deck of Jordan-Hare Stadium. The video board is expected to surpass Texas A&M’s as the largest collegiate video board in the nation.

Syracuse is exploring its options on the Carrier Dome. With local and state officials unable to agree on a new downtown stadium project, school officials will need to make a decision on the future of the dome: whether to replace the dome roof in the next 6 – 8 years (at an expected cost of $25 million), replace the roof while making other building improvements, or building a new stadium.

ULM football facility
Proposed ULM end zone facility

The University of Louisiana Monroe approved a new end zone facility at Malone Stadium. The 11,675 square-foot facility will house a new locker room for the football team and new coaches’ offices with patios overlooking JPS Field. Continue reading

Obama wants to end tax deductions

Obama Wants to End Tax Deduction for Donations to College Athletics

Obama wants to end tax deductionsThe new budget President Obama sent to Congress this week calls for an end to tax deductions for donations made to college athletic departments for season tickets or preferential seating, also known as seat-related contributions. Currently, 80 percent of these donations are tax deductible.

The administration claims people would pay an additional $2.5 billion in taxes over the next decade with this change.

No doubt, college athletics administrators will watch this development closely. Donations are the highest source of revenue in virtually every athletic department. Yes, even higher than those television contracts you hear so much about.

Here is a random sampling of schools throughout FBS to give you an idea of the revenue they generate from donations compared to their total distribution from their conference (television contract, championships, etc.) and the NCAA (March Madness):

School Donations NCAA + Conference Distribution
Alabama $34,233,035 $23,855,929
Louisville $28,935,662 $15,349,134
Michigan $31,285,461 $27,845,239
Texas $37,386,271 $21,740,373
Western Kentucky $3,379,547 $1,634,776
Utah State $2,962,548 $1,888,296
Central Florida $5,088,098 $3,333,291
Source: Reports filed by schools with the NCAA for the 2012-2013 school year
The numbers above include all contributions reported for the year, not just donations made as required for season tickets or preferential seating. However, those seat-related donations account for the majority of donations on a year-to-year basis according to the development folks I’ve interviewed.
Would fans still donate if they no longer received that 80 percent tax deduction? One athletic director told me for my book Saturday Millionaires a couple of years ago that he thought donations would drop by as much as half without the deduction.
Would fans really be willing to give up their seats and all the years of points they’ve built up if they weren’t getting the tax deduction? I’m sure there would be some at the lower end of the scale who might not see it as such a good investment anymore, but I’m not wholly convinced it would have a major impact on giving.  I’d love to hear from those of you working in development in the comments section!
As a side note, Obama’s budget plan also calls for an end to the use of tax-exempt bonds to build facilities for professional sports teams. The plan states debt to finance those facilities would be taxable if 10 percent or more of the facility is used for a private business (i.e., a professional sports team). Implementation is projected to be worth $542 million in tax revenue over ten years.
Saturday Millionaires CTA (1)
College Athletics Construction Roundup

College Athletics Construction Roundup: February 2015

College Athletics Construction RoundupThe “College Athletics Construction Roundup” is a monthly series on the construction of intercollegiate athletics facilities. Each month we’ll provide a list of announced, in progress and recently completed athletic construction projects from around the country. You can view previous editions of the “College Athletics Construction Roundup” here.

Master Plan

Seton Hall unveiled new varsity locker rooms. With the expanded amenities, athletes will now each have his or her own locker for the first time. The 5,000 square-feet of space includes a high definition TV and audio system in each locker, as well as a Wi-Fi hub in each locker room.

Minnesota is moving forward on a $150 million athletic facilities effort that will touch its 25 sports programs. The initial focus will be on practice facilities for the football and basketball programs, as well as an academic building for student athletes. The $15 million Center of Excellence is expected to open in the fall of 2016.

Ball State has completed its fundraising campaign towards facility upgrades, which will benefit nine teams. Projects will include more locker room and practice space for basketball and volleyball, more meeting rooms and offices in the football complex and a golf practice facility. Work has already begun on the baseball and softball projects. Continue reading

Donors conditioning gifts on successful recruiting

Donors Conditioning Gifts to Athletic Departments on Successful Recruiting

Donors conditioning gifts on successful recruitingYou read that headline right – some donors are now conditioning their gifts on their team’s successful recruitment of specific student athletes.

Chadd Scott over on SportsDay Now has a story about a new site called Ubooster, which allows donors to condition their gifts on a specific team signing a specific student athlete. If the student athlete declares his intent on National Signing Day, the athletic department will receive the donation. If not, the donor doesn’t make any donation at all.

Clemson has already indicated it will accept no donations through this method. I wouldn’t be surprised to see every other school follow suit.

You can read more about it over on SportsDay Now. In the interest of full disclosure, the writer is my husband. I’m only mad he found the story before I did!

Pinterest for College Athletics

Pinterest Best Practices for College Athletic Departments

Pinterest for College AthleticsSometimes my content on this site is geared more toward those of you working in college athletics, and this is one of those posts….

From the ability to reach younger alumni to easily engaging with women (who make 85 percent of all consumer purchases) and reaching some of the most affluent online adults, Pinterest can be a valuable marketing tool for intercollegiate athletic departments. If you’re not convinced your athletic department should be on Pinterest, start with this post. If, however, you’re convinced and just need some help boosting your department’s Pinterest presence, then this is the post for you.

I could probably write an entire eBook on best practices for college athletic departments on Pinterest, but here are a few to get you started:

Write good descriptions

From your profile and board descriptions to the pins themselves, spend a little time thinking about what you write. Although Pinterest is primarily a visual platform, search engines do crawl and index Pinterest. You’ll want to use keywords such as “Iowa State Athletics” in your profile description and in board descriptions.

Click here to keep reading on INKsights, my PR firm’s blog!

UCF East Side Club

UCF Adding New Premium Club: East Side Club

When the UCF Knights host Florida International to open the 2015 season on September 5th, you’ll have the opportunity to enjoy the fabulous Florida lifestyle from within the confines of Brighthouse Networks Stadium in the new East Side Club.

1 ESC in stadium

The new 10,000 square foot area, located between the 30-yard lines, will offer an open-air sun deck, chair-back stadium seating and tons of amenities. You can sip on a frozen drink and bask in the sunshine before, during and after the game, with the club having extended pre- and post-game hours.

Other amenities include:

  • Preferred VIP entrance into the stadium
  • More than 15 flat-screen TVs
  • Enhanced WiFi connectivity
  • Private restrooms
  • Gold Zone parking

2 ESC under stadium

“The ESC will be a showcase for the Central Florida region,” UCF Vice President and Director of Athletics Todd Stansbury said. “This is a great place to live, work and play and the ESC will exemplify that. When a viewer anywhere in the country tunes in to watch a UCF football game, they will see shorts and flip-flops – they will see the Florida lifestyle.”

This marks the first major addition to Brighthouse Networks Stadium since it was built in 2007. The project is expected to cost $2.6 million and generate revenue from both memberships and corporate partnerships. Learn more here.

Do you have facilities news? Submit your news here for article consideration and inclusion in our monthly construction update.

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Power 5 Approve Cost of Attendance

Power Five Approve Cost of Attendance for Student Athletes at NCAA Convention

Power 5 Approve Cost of AttendanceIt came as no surprise that the Power Five conferences easily passed the cost of attendance measure being considered at the NCAA convention on Saturday. The final vote tally was 79-1 in favor of going to scholarships that cover the full cost of attendance, with 64 of the 65 schools and all 15 of the student athletes voting in favor of the proposal.

Click  here to keep reading my commentary on Outkick the Coverage on FoxSports.com

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