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Highest Athletic Department Net Income: SEC

The last conference to be covered in’s look into athletic departments with the highest net income is the SEC.  Tomorrow, will rank the top-50 most athletic departments with the highest net income, as well as the athletic departments which generate the most revenue and those with the greatest expenses.

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.


School Total Athletic Department Revenues Total Athletic Department Expenses Net Income
Alabama $123,910,432.00 $92,225,560.00 $31,684,872.00
Arkansas $91,768,113.00 $80,482,490.00 $11,285,623.00
Auburn $103,982,441.00 $100,497,784.00 $3,484,657.00
Florida $123,008,257.00 $112,951,656.00 $10,056,601.00
Georgia $92,341,067.00 $82,765,498.00 $9,575,569.00
Kentucky $84,878,315.00 $81,755,641.00 $3,122,674.00
LSU $106,421,671.00 $96,019,689.00 $10,401,982.00
Ole Miss $48,916,161.00 $48,916,161.00 $0.00
Mississippi State $49,893,731.00 $43,587,148.00 $6,306,583.00
South Carolina $83,704,667.00 $82,941,941.00 $762,726.00
Tennessee $102,495,204.00 $102,480,757.00 $14,447.00
Vanderbilt $55,632,098.00 $49,864,555.00 $5,767,543.00

In terms of SEC athletic department net income, for anyone who is familiar with the conference, there really aren’t any surprises.  Perhaps the only surprise, is that one athletic department turned zero net income in 2010-11:  Ole Miss.  Ole Miss generated the lowest amount of revenue in the SEC, but had the second-lowest expenses (Mississippi State’s were lower).  Outside of Ole Miss, every other athletic department, save for South Carolina and Tennessee, generated at least $1 million in net income.  Alabama’s athletic department generated the greatest amount of net income in 2010-11, with $31,684,872.00

In 2010-11, three SEC athletic departments had expenses exceeding $100 million:  Auburn, Florida and Tennessee.  In terms of revenue, five SEC athletic departments generated over $100 million in revenue:  Alabama, Auburn, Florida, LSU and Tennessee.



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