NCAA College Football 2019-20: Official Thread

Badferret wrote:
Fedaykin98 wrote:

I usually think Enix posts are right on, but bro, I don't think that's even close to true. Maybe if you're referring to non Division 1 schools, but that isn't how you stated it.

I gotta agree with Enix here Fed, the majority of Group of 5 programs barely make money off of football, and depend on revenue sharing from the NCAA. There is a reason group of 5 schools and FCS schools offer themselves of as sacrificial payday slaughter.

Add the cost of the described level of testing needed before and after every game, I just don't see a way the smaller schools have any chance of playing this fall, especially without students on campus.

To further illustrate this point, here is a comparison between two different schools that both beat Tennessee last year.

But... That's not what Enix said. He said student fees. NCAA revenue sharing comes from sports that are actually played, particularly football.

By the NCAA's benchmark for self-sufficiency, just 24 of 230 public schools in Division I stand on their own, up from 20 a year earlier, according to an analysis of the 2013-14 school year by USA TODAY Sports, based on data gathered in conjunction with Indiana University's National Sports Journalism Center.

By NCAA definition, self-sufficiency means an athletic department's generated operating revenues — not counting money from student fees, university funding or direct government support — are at least equal to its total operating expenses, which is legalese for taking in more money than you spend.

Oregon led the nation with $196 million total operating revenue and an $83.5 million difference between its generated revenue and its total operating expense of $110.4 million. However, the school reported that its revenue included in-kind facility gifts of $95 million — the value of a football training facility funded primarily by Nike co-founder Phil Knight and his wife.

The other 23 schools meeting this standard are all from the Southeastern, Big Ten, Pac-12 and Big 12 conferences, including Texas, which led the nation in total operating expenses at $154.1 million and reported transferring another $9.7 million back to the university. Texas' total operating revenue was second to Oregon's at $161 million.

The Atlantic Coast Conference, the other member of the Power Five, did not have any schools meeting the NCAA benchmark, though North Carolina State came close, with a deficit of just more than $165,000. That means athletics departments at schools in conferences outside the Power Five all ran deficits — and four of the six largest are from schools in the C-USA, AAC and Mountain West.

Rutgers, which was then in the AAC but has since moved to the Big Ten, had 2013-14's largest deficit at $36.3 million. The AAC's Connecticut had the third-highest ($27.1 million), ODU the fourth-highest ($26.8 million) and Mountain West's Air Force the sixth-highest ($25.8 million).

The deficits get smaller and the number of self-sufficient schools gets larger if viewed another way. Though athletics departments get money from student fees, university funds and government support, they also send money to their schools through payments for scholarships and facilities and through transfers like Texas'.

When those amounts are balanced, USA TODAY Sports found, all 50 of the public schools that were in a Power Five conference in 2013-14 were self-sufficient. But only three Bowl Subdivision schools outside the Power Five and two non-FBS schools were self-sufficient.

The article/data is from 2015 but I can't find more current data.

Still, to Enix's point. Smaller schools' athletic departments are dependent on student fees.

Whoa. Didn't mean for this to blow up and then ghost. Anyway, back now.

I was making (or trying to make) a very narrow point that (a) student fees play a much bigger role than most people assume at most schools and (b) any significant decline in enrollment this fall will do a number on athletics budgets in total, not just football (but probably not football, at least right away).

The Power 5 schools - which is what, about 60 schools? -- will probably be in OK shape, mostly because big flagships and elite privates won't see much in the way of enrollment decline. (Good branding makes you pretty much recession- and pandemic-proof, right?) Most have ways to backstop against big financial losses. The rest of the ~140 D1 schools -- your small and mid-sized privates and regional state universities -- are on a lot shakier ground.

Take the MAC, for instance, a conference of nothing but public regional universities. The MAC announced this week a bunch of cuts -- no conference tourneys in most sports, fewer teams invited to the conference basketball tourney, things like that. And Bowling Green announced today that it's cutting baseball.

What the MAC did (and what other schools and conferences will continue to do) will be to cut as much as they can and spare football for as long as possible. All bets are off if football starts late or not at all.

PS: For fun, check out the Knight Foundation's College Athletics Financial Information database. It has the sports financials for all of the public universities that play athletics.

It shows that only 1 percent of SEC revenue comes from student fees. It's 6 percent for the ACC. For CUSA, it's a third. It's a quarter of the Sun Belt.

Unfortunately, you can't tease out the direct NCAA revenue from this report. It's lumped in with conference, bowl game and media rights revenues. Not surprisingly, that chunk of change is much bigger for the Power 5s than everyone else.

PPS: NCAA payouts took a big hit this year -- $225M instead of ~$600M to member schools. 80%+ of the NCAA's annual revenue comes from the men's basketball tourney, and that didn't happen as we all know. What you're seeing now is partly fallout from that as well as enrollment estimates for the fall, which are looking pretty grim in some places.

(deleted because I hit quote not edit, durrr)