Where Does All The Money Go?

SCHOOL SPENDING

We hear the comments every time a new coach is hired and fired at UT. Look how much money the athletic program spends on coaches.

Maybe we were on to something according to a new study that highlights spending gaps in the NCAA.

The study looked at public universities in six big-time conferences like the SEC and Big 12.

The report does not provide information about ratios at individual institutions.

 

Here are the numbers:

The study finds the largest gap by far in the Southeastern Conference, which combines relatively low academic spending and explosive coaching salaries.

More money was spent on student athletes compared to a student for academic expenses.

In the SEC, median athletic spending totaled nearly $164,000 per athlete in 2010. That is more than 12 times the $13,390 that SEC schools spent per student for academic expenses, including instructional costs and student services.

The schools of the Pac-10 (now the Pac 12), Atlantic Coast Conference, Big Ten and Big East also averaged six-figure spending per student athlete in 2010, the study finds.

Overall, FBS schools spent on average $92,000 per athlete in 2010, or just under seven times what they were spending per student on academics at a time of falling state funding for higher education in much of the country, and tuition increases widely outpacing inflation. The report did find, however, the growth rate seemed to be slowing.

The figures likely won't shock college presidents arriving in Grapevine, Texas, for the NCAA convention, but they will highlight their rising concern over out-of-control spending on intercollegiate athletics that threatens to sink budgets and compromise their academic missions. Some want the NCAA to do more to address the issue even if it can't legally limit salaries.

A big driver in athletic spending has been the growth in coaching salaries and the size of athletic department staff, with compensation accounting for about one-third of athletics expenditures across the FBS. Nowhere is that on more vivid display than the SEC, which has produced the last seven BCS national football champions.

Nick Saban, whose Alabama team has won three of the last four national championships, earned $5.32 million in 2012, but every conference football coach now earns at least $2 million. Already this off-season, four losing conference programs - Tennessee, Kentucky, Auburn and Arkansas - have hired new coaches at annual salaries of between $2.2 million and $3.2 million. The University of Mississippi's Hugh Freeze, the conference's lowest-paid coach, got a $500,000 raise to $2 million, a 10 percent raise for his assistants, and a $12.5 million upgrade to practice facilities.

 

According to the College Board, the average financial aid package at Mississippi meets just 77 percent of student need, and just 57 percent at Alabama.

Online: http://www.air.org and http://www.deltacostproject.org/