Highest Net Income Amongst Athletics Departments

To conclude this week’s series, BusinessofCollegeSports.com will list in order the athletics departments earning the highest net income  in 2010-11.

Issue has been raised by some over the classification of revenue minus expenses in this series as “profit,” since athletics departments are nonprofit organizations.  It should be noted, that in the disclosures to the Department of Education, the athletics departments do not report either profit or net income.  Rather, they report their revenues and expenses.  For this series, profit/net income was calculated by subtracting the total expenses reported from the total revenues reported.

As noted above, the data was obtained from the Department of Education and is for 2010-11.  The data from the Department of Education is by no means perfect.  Throughout this series, net income was calculated by subtracting the “grand total expenses” from the “grand total revenues” that the athletic department reported to the Department of Education.  Expenses in this instance included:  head and assistant coach salaries, athletically related student aid, recruiting expenses, operating (game-day expenses) and “not allocated” expenses.  The expenses faced by athletic departments, however, may be greater than those reported in this snapshot provided by the Department of Education.  For example, an athletic department may have capital expenses outside of those expenses included in the report.  This all being said, this data is the only data publicly available for both public and private institutions.  Thus, it at least provides some insight into athletic department revenues, expenses, and net income before taking into consideration additional expenses, like capital projects.

In 2010-11, 48 athletics departments in BCS AQ conferences generated a positive net income.

School Athletic Department Net Income
Conference
Alabama $31,684,872.00 SEC
Penn State $31,619,687.00 Big Ten
Michigan $26,649,499.00 Big Ten
Texas $24,317,815.00 Big 12
Kansas State $23,395,408.00 Big 12
Notre Dame $19,147,710.00 Big East
Ohio State $18,630,964.00 Big Ten
Oregon $16,433,642.00 Pac-12
Oklahoma State $14,365,376.00 Big 12
Michigan State $13,512,269.00 Big Ten
Arkansas $11,285,623.00 SEC
LSU $10,401,982.00 SEC
Florida $10,056,601.00 SEC
Georgia $9,575,569.00 SEC
Oregon State $954,682.00 Pac-12
Oklahoma $8,064,477.00 Big 12
Purdue $6,773,110.00 Big Ten
Mississippi State $6,306,583.00 SEC
Virginia $6,038,664.00 ACC
Vanderbilt $5,767,543.00 SEC
Iowa $5,296,068.00 Big Ten
Indiana $5,293,816.00 Big Ten
Nebraska $5,170,608.00 Big Ten
Virginia Tech $4,314,760.00 ACC
Louisville $3,952,601.00 Big East
Auburn $3,484,657.00 SEC
Texas A&M $3,224,429.00 Big 12
Texas Tech $3,124,246.00 Big 12
Kentucky $3,122,674.00 SEC
Miami $2,763,826.00 ACC
Washington $2,330,501.00 Pac-12
Illinois $1,815,596.00 Big Ten
Colorado $1,763,633.00 Pac-12
Arizona $1,524,374.00 Pac-12
Utah $1,147,160.00 Pac-12
South Carolina $762,726.00 SEC
Syracuse $717,817.00 Big East
North Carolina $660,231.00 ACC
Wisconsin $655,421.00 Big Ten
Duke $567,207.00 ACC
Maryland $263,711.00 ACC
Clemson $216,318.00 ACC
North Carolina State $192,151.00 ACC
California $181,167.00 Pac-12
Missouri $143,588.00 Big 12
Iowa State $121,686.00 Big 12
Connecticut $94,522.00 Big East
Tennessee $14,447.00 SEC

In previous posts from this series, you’ll remember that every Big Ten athletics department ranked in the top-50 for revenues and expenses.  However, neither Minnesota nor Northwestern achieved a net income above zero.

The conference with the highest percentage of members having a positive net income was the SEC.  All but one SEC member (Ole Miss) generated a positive net income in 2010-11.  The SEC was also home to the athletics department with the highest net income of any BCS AQ school, Alabama.  However, the ten schools generating the greatest net income in 2010-11 are from a mix of conferences.  The only conference not represented in the top-10 is the ACC.

Conference # of Athletics Departments % of Conference
ACC 8 50%
Big 12 8 80%
Big East 4 25%
Big Ten 10 83.33%
Pac-12 7 58.33%
SEC 11 91.60%


Posted on March 21, 2012, in ACC, Big 12, Big East, Big Ten, Finance, Pac-10, SEC. Bookmark the permalink. 29 Comments.

  1. You routinely see reports (typically in connection with arguments about whether to pay student-athletes or not) that go something like this: “Only 12-14% of FBS programs even make money.”

    Do your stats effectively call into question such statements? Do you have an estimate of the number of athletic programs percentage-wise that turn a profit?

  2. The numbers for the University of Oregon are slightly misleading. We had debt service of just over $16M during this reporting year, resulting in a lot different number than reported.

  3. Why do you even use the term “profit” as this gives an appearance of bias? Non-profits typically use the term “excess revenues” or “revenue surplus.”

    On another note, it would be very interesting to see how much students pay in athletics fees at these schools.

  4. Guys, first off what you all need to realize is that this is a BLOG. It is their personal beliefs with no evidence to back it up. Just use your logic when looking at this report. Kansas State at #5? Please explain how in the world they even turn a profit, much less a $23 m profit? They have Vanderbilt at the 20th most profitable athletic department. Vanderbilt does not even have an athletic department. After studying this same subject for 5 years, I know that there are only 9 schools that actually have a profitable athletic department. Ohio State (has been #1 every year for a very long time), Texas, Florida, Alabama, Michigan, Oregon, Penn State, Stanford, and Notre Dame.

    • You forgot Wisconsin. They sell out every football game and have sold out every basketball game for 15 years. They have led in College Hockey attendance forever…

    • Your comment makes me think you havent done much research.

      the SEC leads the country in attendance in football and basball, and per size of Arena, it leads in mens and womens basketball (NCAA website). And the word athletic department is only a command structure. Your individual teams still have budgets instead of one AD giving them a budget.

  5. Way to go Kansas State… Should have a party in Manhattan “The Little Apple”/Aggieville with some of these proceeds!!

  6. Revenue data used for this analysis is not reliable.

    The government collects expense data for measuring Title IX compliance. The forms the schools file have a space for revenue, but it’s the expense data that has to be accurate for compliance, not the revenue data.

    Some schools take providing revenue data more seriously than others. For example, DePaul reported men’s basketball revenue in the amount of $6,467,709 compared to Notre Dame’s $3,977,728. Same conference. Same proportional share of Big East NCAA Tournament money. Same share of Big East TV money. Average home game attendance within 100 of each other… Do you think DePaul’s program had $1.5 million more in product licensing than Notre Dame had?

    Louisville reported basketball revenue as $40,887,938. Do you really believe UL made more than 10 times what ND made from basketball when the lion’s share of revenue comes from a TV contract they have in common?

    Then there’s Seton Hall’s report. SHU reported men’s basketball expenses of $6,812,231 and men’s basketball revenue of $6,812,231. Really? It just worked out as a breakeven year right down to the last dollar? I don’t think so. Syracuse also broke even to the dollar. What are the odds that two programs in the same conference would do that?

    The expense numbers in the EIA data should be pretty accurate. The revenue numbers are fairly worthless.

  7. The data from the Department of Education is by no means perfect. It is their personal beliefs with no evidence to back it up. Just use your logic when looking at this report. Vanderbilt does not even have an athletic department. And the word athletic department is only a command structure. Your individual teams still have budgets instead of one AD giving them a budget. Same proportional share of Big East NCAA Tournament money. Syracuse also broke even to the dollar. The revenue numbers are fairly worthless. Notify me of new posts via email.Hope you like my post on بنات today.

  8. personal beliefs with no evidence to back it up. Just use your logic when looking at this report. Vanderbilt does not even have an athletic department. And the word athletic department is only a command structure. Your individual teams still have budgets instead of one AD giving them a budget. Same proportional share of Big East NCAA Tournament money. Syracuse also broke even to the dollar. The revenue numbers are fairly worthless. Notify me of new posts via email.Hope you like my post

  9. im with this post .the SEC leads the country in attendance in football and basball, and per size of Arena, it leads in mens and womens basketball (NCAA website). And the word athletic department is only a command structure. Your individual teams still have budgets instead of one AD giving them a budget. .. thank you

    • im with this post .the SEC leads the country in attendance in football and basball, and per size of Arena, it leads in mens and womens basketball (NCAA website). And the word athletic department is only a command structure. Your individual teams still have budgets instead of one AD giving them a budget. .. thank you

  10. How about the SEC 91.60% that is great.

  1. Pingback: ‘Bama, Penn State most profitable athletic departments | CollegeFootballTalk

  2. Pingback: Alabama, Penn State most profitable athletic programs | Penn State Football

  3. Pingback: College Football 2012: Big Ten Beats out SEC in Net Profits for 2010-2011 | PAC-12 Football

  4. Pingback: SEC Football: New TV Deal Will Boost Conference to Top of Profit Charts | SEC Football

  5. Pingback: Alabama, Penn State most profitable athletic programs | Alabama News | Alabama Breaking News Headlines | Alabama News Directory

  6. Pingback: Greg Swaim – No 2-Minute Warning: Big Ten, SEC still ahead of Big 12 in money game

  7. Pingback: Briefing: Alabama’s Spring Practice Update, Alabama coaching salaries & Gymnastics takes 2nd at SEC Championship | Capstone Report

  8. Pingback: Nick Saban: Worth Every Crimson Cent - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Fan Site - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.

  9. Pingback: 2012 Spring Practice Midpoint Update

  10. Pingback: The NY Goldmine for DII, AAU’s Reign, QU Talks Recruiting & Poll the Audience | Connecticut Blue Chips

  11. Pingback: The Real Independence Question | Her Loyal Sons

  12. Pingback: Title IX-related questions

  13. Pingback: Enough is Enough - Landscape of College Sports Must Change

  14. Pingback: Economically, We Need Penn State Football - Onward State

  15. Pingback: Athletic departments | Sekyu

  16. Pingback: NCAA Football Will be the New Top Sport for Americans if They Play Their Cards Right

Leave a Reply