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(Sports Business Daily)   College athletics makes tons of money, right? Thus, universities should give these programs special treatment, such as Tennessee...which is $200mil in debt, has less than $2mil in reserves, and owes $21mil in annual debt service. Oops   (sportsbusinessdaily.com) divider line 66
    More: Fail, Tenn, sports, debt service coverage ratio, Tennessee River, Neyland Stadium, Southeastern Conference, Vols, University of Tennessee  
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1855 clicks; posted to Sports » on 06 Feb 2013 at 7:34 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-02-06 07:37:50 AM
Look, Danny, I lent you what, $2.50 yesterday?  I can't foot the bill for everything.
 
2013-02-06 07:43:07 AM
Red state problems.
 
2013-02-06 07:45:26 AM
Can't they just ask for volunteers to help out.
 
2013-02-06 07:48:35 AM
$200m in debt and only 21 bucks in annual debt service? That's a very generous rate.
 
2013-02-06 07:54:37 AM
This would have nothing to do with their recent coaching change fiascos.
 
2013-02-06 08:00:47 AM
I swear I've commented on this same thread last month (and also did a month before that)
 
2013-02-06 08:08:56 AM
Well, it is Tennessee. Everyone's trailers are being foreclosed on in the state. They keep paying the wrong players.
 
2013-02-06 08:09:40 AM
Not that many college athletic programs are profitable, even among the big schools.  Looking at this chart, it looks like Tennessee is only making a net profit of $14,000 each year!  Compare that with heavyweight teams at the top that have ~$20-$30 million in net revenues every year.
 
2013-02-06 08:26:21 AM
So Tennesee is 200 mil in debt because of the athletic programs?

Or because of incompetence and mismanagement of the entire University?
 
2013-02-06 08:27:42 AM

HMS_Blinkin: Not that many college athletic programs are profitable, even among the big schools.  Looking at this chart, it looks like Tennessee is only making a net profit of $14,000 each year!  Compare that with heavyweight teams at the top that have ~$20-$30 million in net revenues every year.


I think you have to put it in context. According to this chart, the Tennessee football program had a net profit of $39 million. The problem is, Tennessee wastes a lot of money from the profitable sports on other sports.  The schools that make large amounts of money typically have fewer teams or underfund their less popular sports.
 
2013-02-06 08:34:04 AM

js34603: So Tennesee is 200 mil in debt because of the athletic programs?

Or because of incompetence and mismanagement of the entire University?


just the athletic program.  lots of debt from facility upgrades and coaching buyouts combined with poor attendance.  next time you could read the farking article.
 
2013-02-06 08:40:45 AM
As of a couple of years ago, the only schools that operated their athletic departments with absolutely no subsidies (money from outside the athletic department) were LSU, Nebraska, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Penn State, Texas, and.....Purdue?

A&M  Might as well be added - between 2006 and 2011, they received a grand total of $9,856 in outside revenue.

Source:

USA TODAY Sports' College Athletics FinancesDetails of revenues and expenses at NCAA D-I public schools, 2006-2011.
 
2013-02-06 08:43:52 AM

A Fark Handle: js34603: So Tennesee is 200 mil in debt because of the athletic programs?

Or because of incompetence and mismanagement of the entire University?

just the athletic program.  lots of debt from facility upgrades and coaching buyouts combined with poor attendance.  next time you could read the farking article.


Ticket sales are still above what they were from a few years prior, and the program is still profitable.
 
2013-02-06 08:43:57 AM
Yo, coach! You said there'd be no math!
 
2013-02-06 08:43:57 AM
My understanding is that one of the main advantages of prominent sports teams for universities is that they increase alumni donations.  I doubt that kind of thing is included in these numbers.
 
2013-02-06 08:44:15 AM

The Madd Mann: The problem is, Tennessee wastes a lot of money from the profitable sports on other sports.  The schools that make large amounts of money typically have fewer teams or underfund their less popular sports.


I don't think that explains all of it---lots of schools provide good funding for non-profitable sports.  Here's an example.  According to wiki articles comparing Tennessee to Michigan (which I picked as an example because it has a much more profitable overall athletic program), Michigan has 7 more sports teams than Tennessee, 27-20.  As for investing in the less-profitable sports, I think it would be fair to compare the number of non-football/men's basketball national titles.  Tennessee has a total of 23 national titles, of which 6 are for football and 0 are for men's basketball, leaving 17 for other sports (the lion's share of which is women's basketball).  Michigan claims a total of 53 national titles of which 11 are football and 1 is men's basketball, leaving 41 for other sports (most of these coming from men's swimming and hockey).

I'm sure there are counter-examples, but it's too simplistic to say that Tennessee's troubles are caused by their funding of non-revenue sports (which mostly consists of men's basketball and football---although Tennessee MIGHT make some money from women's basketball because they're such a powerhouse in that sport).  LOTS of schools give pretty generous support to those sports, and don't have the same financial problems.  This just looks like financial mis-management on the part of Tennessee, to me.
 
2013-02-06 08:54:01 AM

Nanny Statesman: My understanding is that one of the main advantages of prominent sports teams for universities is that they increase alumni donations.  I doubt that kind of thing is included in these numbers.


I work at a D-I school, and I think athletic fundraising accounted for about 2% of our last campaign.  A big gift to athletics at most schools is in the six-figure range; big gifts to name academic buildings, programs, etc. are going to be in the seven or eight figure range (or nine figure if you're an Ivy League school).  Apart from a few donors like Phil Knight, T. Boone Pickens, and the Walton family, donors to universities give their biggest gifts to academic divisions.

I think it's a myth that athletics encourages alumni donations, to be perfectly honest.  When our basketball team was doing well, we didn't see any significant increase in donations, and I've heard the same from colleagues on that score.
 
2013-02-06 08:54:08 AM

Nanny Statesman: My understanding is that one of the main advantages of prominent sports teams for universities is that they increase alumni donations.  I doubt that kind of thing is included in these numbers.


Donations to the actual academic mission of the University, or donations to help support the athletic programs (the football and basketball minor leagues)?
 
2013-02-06 09:04:13 AM
"You're trying to keep up and then you wind up paying coaches not to coach. That can add up in a hurry."

To more than $200,000,000?
 
2013-02-06 09:09:58 AM
How does the coach's negotiating agent get paid? A percentage of the negotiated pool of money. How does the university negotiating agent get paid? A yearly salary. How does the player's negotiating agent get paid? He doesn't.

Which of these three positions has the highest remuneration to attract skilled negotiators?
Which of these three negotiators has a personal investment in the size of the negotiated pool of money?

Thanks to the admirable efforts of the NCAA, the prominent role of non-profit institutions in managing the teams, and the immutable laws of economic incentives, the advertising revenue from one of this nation's most popular sports goes straight to the coaches' pockets.
 
2013-02-06 09:10:31 AM

The Third Man: Nanny Statesman: My understanding is that one of the main advantages of prominent sports teams for universities is that they increase alumni donations.  I doubt that kind of thing is included in these numbers.

I work at a D-I school, and I think athletic fundraising accounted for about 2% of our last campaign.  A big gift to athletics at most schools is in the six-figure range; big gifts to name academic buildings, programs, etc. are going to be in the seven or eight figure range (or nine figure if you're an Ivy League school).  Apart from a few donors like Phil Knight, T. Boone Pickens, and the Walton family, donors to universities give their biggest gifts to academic divisions.

I think it's a myth that athletics encourages alumni donations, to be perfectly honest.  When our basketball team was doing well, we didn't see any significant increase in donations, and I've heard the same from colleagues on that score.


Interesting.  You would know more about it than me.  But I wasn't just thinking of specific athletic fundraising events, or things marked for the athletic team (I'm not sure how you are classifying 'athletic fundraising').  My impression was that having prominent sports teams increased the feeling of community among alumni, as well as reminding them of the university more often, which might make them more likely to donate when hit with a universities other fundraising efforts.  It may just be that my undergrad university was obsessing over why their alumni donations were so low.  I think that was the context in which I heard about this kind of thing before - and given that they had crap donation rates, they presumably didn't have any special knowledge about increasing them.
 
2013-02-06 09:12:44 AM

HMS_Blinkin: Not that many college athletic programs are profitable, even among the big schools.  Looking at this chart, it looks like Tennessee is only making a net profit of $14,000 each year!  Compare that with heavyweight teams at the top that have ~$20-$30 million in net revenues every year.



SchoolAthletic DepartmentNet IncomeConferenceAlabama$31,684,872.00SECPenn State$31,619,687.00Big TenMichigan$26,649,499.00Big TenTexas$24,317,815.00Big 12Kansas State$23,395,408.00Big 12Notre Dame$19,147,710.00Big East
As a K-State fan I would just like to point out that we are between Texas and Notre Dame in Athletic Department profitability.  We are a smaller public university in the middle of northeast Kansas with a football stadium that holds less than 60,000 and when it comes to collegiate licensing and selling hats and jackets in the mall with our logo we're nowhere near the same universe when it comes to Texas and Notre Dame...

...yet we know how to turn a profit.

Carry the banner high, 'Cats.
 
2013-02-06 09:15:08 AM

HMS_Blinkin: Not that many college athletic programs are profitable, even among the big schools.  Looking at this chart, it looks like Tennessee is only making a net profit of $14,000 each year!  Compare that with heavyweight teams at the top that have ~$20-$30 million in net revenues every year.


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


As a K-State fan I would just like to point out that we are between Texas and Notre Dame in Athletic Department profitability.  We are a smaller public university in the middle of northeast Kansas with a football stadium that holds less than 60,000 and when it comes to collegiate licensing and selling hats and jackets in the mall with our logo we're nowhere near the same universe when it comes to Texas and Notre Dame...

...yet we know how to turn a profit.

Carry the banner high, 'Cats.
 
2013-02-06 09:15:29 AM

HMS_Blinkin: The Madd Mann: The problem is, Tennessee wastes a lot of money from the profitable sports on other sports.  The schools that make large amounts of money typically have fewer teams or underfund their less popular sports.

I don't think that explains all of it---lots of schools provide good funding for non-profitable sports.  Here's an example.  According to wiki articles comparing Tennessee to Michigan (which I picked as an example because it has a much more profitable overall athletic program), Michigan has 7 more sports teams than Tennessee, 27-20.  As for investing in the less-profitable sports, I think it would be fair to compare the number of non-football/men's basketball national titles.  Tennessee has a total of 23 national titles, of which 6 are for football and 0 are for men's basketball, leaving 17 for other sports (the lion's share of which is women's basketball).  Michigan claims a total of 53 national titles of which 11 are football and 1 is men's basketball, leaving 41 for other sports (most of these coming from men's swimming and hockey).

I'm sure there are counter-examples, but it's too simplistic to say that Tennessee's troubles are caused by their funding of non-revenue sports (which mostly consists of men's basketball and football---although Tennessee MIGHT make some money from women's basketball because they're such a powerhouse in that sport).  LOTS of schools give pretty generous support to those sports, and don't have the same financial problems.  This just looks like financial mis-management on the part of Tennessee, to me.


I don't disagree, and I do appear to be wrong about the number of teams. Tennessee also appears to have spent more money on their football stadium than it's probably worth, although that only accounts for $130 million of the $200 million in debt.

I would point out, however, that the number of national titles doesn't necessarily correspond with money invested in the program.  From my own experience, I think the Penn State women's volleyball team is the best example. The team recently won four straight national titles (2007-2010), including a three year undefeated streak. They play in Rec Hall, an 84-year old gym that seats 6,500. One of the last major renovations to the building was in 2005... when they installed electronic scoreboards.
 
2013-02-06 09:18:10 AM

theurge14: ...yet we know how to turn a profit.


That's kind of my point---Tennessee is obviously being mismanaged to death.
 
2013-02-06 09:18:13 AM
Basically, the people in charge at TN have failed, big time.  It really is a good school...they have some great programs.  But the people higher up have mismanaged things- badly.  It's not just confined to the Athletic Department, either (although Hamilton was a moron); the university has had 6 presidents since 1999.  It's depressing, as an alumni, to see my alma mater have so many problems.  I wish I could be naive and say "Football bad!  Get rid of it!", but I know that UTK has benefited greatly from the athletic program, and that without it, it would not be what it is.  But hopefully they have finally found some responsible people to run the University, and not into the ground.
 
2013-02-06 09:25:37 AM

The Madd Mann: I don't disagree, and I do appear to be wrong about the number of teams. Tennessee also appears to have spent more money on their football stadium than it's probably worth, although that only accounts for $130 million of the $200 million in debt.

I would point out, however, that the number of national titles doesn't necessarily correspond with money invested in the program.  From my own experience, I think the Penn State women's volleyball team is the best example. The team recently won four straight national titles (2007-2010), including a three year undefeated streak. They play in Rec Hall, an 84-year old gym that seats 6,500. One of the last major renovations to the building was in 2005... when they installed electronic scoreboards.


Oh, for sure there's better ways of measuring investment in other programs.  I hadn't known that about PSU volleyball, that's interesting.  You'd think that the facility would cause them to have recruiting problems, but maybe they had an awesome coach or something?  I dunno.

I was also thinking about other counter-examples that would be more in line with what you originally said.  I'm at work (and can't research thoroughly right now), but I'd be willing to guess that Alabama is a great example of a team putting all its eggs in the basket of a money-making sport.  In fact, ALL 15 of Alabama's 15 men's sport NCs have come from football!  Any maybe I'm wrong, but that sure looks evidence that their investment in other sports is pretty minimal (and it passes the common sense test---Alabama isn't really that prominent in the two other college sports I keep track of, which are basketball and swimming).  So, you definitely have a point in that some universities do that, and that just has to help Alabama's bottom line.
 
2013-02-06 09:29:47 AM

bborchar: It's depressing, as an alumni, to see my alma mater have so many problems.


That butt-chugging episode probably didn't help things, either.  All snark aside though, I feel your pain.  I went to a christian-affiliated private college that was (at the time) pretty socially liberal and accepting of other faiths and gender/sexual orientations.  Since I've graduated, the president has gone straight to the derp side on those issues, and it sucks that I don't have the kind of money it would take to actually influence the college's decisions.  Right now, withholding my donation doesn't really bother them too much :-/
 
2013-02-06 09:32:15 AM
The problem is most of the the money the athletic departments make does *not* get reinvested back into the athletic departments.  That money goes towards other uses within the universities - new classroom buildings, new dorms, administrator pay, new dining halls, teacher pay, new research equipment, etc.  So the athletic departments need to make enough money to support themselves and many other parts of the university.  They save money by only paying their athletes compensation in the form of scholarships.

My alma mater, Maryland, spent all the money they made from a National Champion Men's basketball team and decent football team for a couple years on infrastructure (new fitness center, new basketball arena) and then when Maryland athletics went back to sucking again, went into major debt.
 
2013-02-06 09:36:04 AM
Why is it some headlines get fixed and others are left for all to laugh at?
 
2013-02-06 09:38:25 AM

SlothB77: The problem is most of the the money the athletic departments make does *not* get reinvested back into the athletic departments.  That money goes towards other uses within the universities - new classroom buildings, new dorms, administrator pay, new dining halls, teacher pay, new research equipment, etc.  So the athletic departments need to make enough money to support themselves and many other parts of the university.  They save money by only paying their athletes compensation in the form of scholarships.



This is simply NOT true.In fact it is the complete opposite of the case at all but a select few Universities. The Athletic department does not subsidize the university in general, the University subsidizes the athletic department. The vast majority of athletic departments lose money.

That said, if what you were saying was true, it would be a vast improvement over the current situation. The primary mission of a University is education, not athletics.
 
2013-02-06 09:39:49 AM

bborchar: has had 6 presidents since 1999.


It's a state school in a state that has open contempt for education. I find it entirely reasonable that people who value college academics and can competently run a university would stay the hell away from our Tribal Regions and the Taliban that infest them.
 
2013-02-06 09:50:04 AM
As a life long Vols fan that follows it all pretty closely let me say that I think it's a combination of buying out so many different coaching staffs (Fulmer, Kiffin, Dooley, and Pearl), poor results leading a low ticket/merchandise sales, and poor management from the administration. I forget how many Presidents the university has had in the last 10 years but it's a lot (5 or 6).

I was at the Florida game this year when Gameday came to town, I regularly go to the games and that was the first time since Fulmer I had seen that kind of excitement from the fan base. It was a hard sell out and everyone was talking about how we're back. When the blow out started, I've never a more demoralized group of fans. It was like everyone got kicked in the nuts at the same time. Those people aren't going to exactly go out and spend lots of money on Vols gear. In East TN we have stores that specialize in TN stuff called Hound Dogs. When the losing seasons started lots of them had to close down.

/csb
//our signing class today isn't looking all that great
 
2013-02-06 09:58:24 AM
Here's an idea, stop paying coaches those ginormous salaries and/or buying out their contracts.
 
2013-02-06 10:03:06 AM

A Fark Handle: js34603: So Tennesee is 200 mil in debt because of the athletic programs?

Or because of incompetence and mismanagement of the entire University?

just the athletic program.  lots of debt from facility upgrades and coaching buyouts combined with poor attendance.  next time you could read the farking article.


So they upgraded facilities they couldn't afford to upgrade and had to buy out coaches they never should have hired?

Sounds like incompetence and mismanagement. But hey, it's a lot easier to blame the athletics programs than admit incompetence.
 
2013-02-06 10:04:34 AM

Nanny Statesman: The Third Man: Nanny Statesman: My understanding is that one of the main advantages of prominent sports teams for universities is that they increase alumni donations.  I doubt that kind of thing is included in these numbers.

I work at a D-I school, and I think athletic fundraising accounted for about 2% of our last campaign.  A big gift to athletics at most schools is in the six-figure range; big gifts to name academic buildings, programs, etc. are going to be in the seven or eight figure range (or nine figure if you're an Ivy League school).  Apart from a few donors like Phil Knight, T. Boone Pickens, and the Walton family, donors to universities give their biggest gifts to academic divisions.

I think it's a myth that athletics encourages alumni donations, to be perfectly honest.  When our basketball team was doing well, we didn't see any significant increase in donations, and I've heard the same from colleagues on that score.

Interesting.  You would know more about it than me.  But I wasn't just thinking of specific athletic fundraising events, or things marked for the athletic team (I'm not sure how you are classifying 'athletic fundraising').  My impression was that having prominent sports teams increased the feeling of community among alumni, as well as reminding them of the university more often, which might make them more likely to donate when hit with a universities other fundraising efforts.  It may just be that my undergrad university was obsessing over why their alumni donations were so low.  I think that was the context in which I heard about this kind of thing before - and given that they had crap donation rates, they presumably didn't have any special knowledge about increasing them.


This line gets trotted out by defenders of athletic spending, but the actual data on it has been mixed.

See e.g.,  http://www.nber.org/papers/w13937">http://www.nber.org/papers/w13937
 
2013-02-06 10:04:38 AM

PsyLord: Here's an idea, stop paying coaches those ginormous salaries and/or buying out their contracts.


and you stay stuck as a 7-6 mid level SEC team
 
2013-02-06 10:06:41 AM

ModernPrimitive01: As a life long Vols fan that follows it all pretty closely let me say that I think it's a combination of buying out so many different coaching staffs (Fulmer, Kiffin, Dooley, and Pearl),


You did not buy out Kiffin's contract, as a matter of fact, USC had to pay Tennessee.  Pearl was fired for cause IIRC and thus there was no buyout. Dooley only had one year left on his contract
 
2013-02-06 10:09:17 AM

Nanny Statesman: The Third Man: Nanny Statesman: My understanding is that one of the main advantages of prominent sports teams for universities is that they increase alumni donations.  I doubt that kind of thing is included in these numbers.

I work at a D-I school, and I think athletic fundraising accounted for about 2% of our last campaign.  A big gift to athletics at most schools is in the six-figure range; big gifts to name academic buildings, programs, etc. are going to be in the seven or eight figure range (or nine figure if you're an Ivy League school).  Apart from a few donors like Phil Knight, T. Boone Pickens, and the Walton family, donors to universities give their biggest gifts to academic divisions.

I think it's a myth that athletics encourages alumni donations, to be perfectly honest.  When our basketball team was doing well, we didn't see any significant increase in donations, and I've heard the same from colleagues on that score.

Interesting.  You would know more about it than me.  But I wasn't just thinking of specific athletic fundraising events, or things marked for the athletic team (I'm not sure how you are classifying 'athletic fundraising').  My impression was that having prominent sports teams increased the feeling of community among alumni, as well as reminding them of the university more often, which might make them more likely to donate when hit with a universities other fundraising efforts.  It may just be that my undergrad university was obsessing over why their alumni donations were so low.  I think that was the context in which I heard about this kind of thing before - and given that they had crap donation rates, they presumably didn't have any special knowledge about increasing them.


Yeah, that's always difficult to judge.  But when I think about our biggest donors, they don't really care that much about our athletics program.  In some cases they wouldn't even notice if it was gone (big foundations or friends of the university, for example).  I know the same is true at many places, even one of my alma maters, which has a profitable football program.

On alumni giving rates:  it's something universities probably obsess about too much.  That probably sounds strange considering what I do, but when you think about the fact that 90-95% of the average big university's donations are coming from the top 5% of its donors, getting lots of alumni to donate $20 or so every year really doesn't make a significant dent in its cash numbers.  A while back I ran the numbers and found that if every single living alumnus of our institution who hadn't given last year made a gift of $20 to us, our cash in would have gone up by...6%.  Sure, it helps the college rankings like US News and World report, but as far as making the college more affordable for students or making lasting changes to the institution, mass giving doesn't make the difference a lot of fundraising shops think.
 
2013-02-06 10:13:16 AM

Hang On Voltaire: PsyLord: Here's an idea, stop paying coaches those ginormous salaries and/or buying out their contracts.

and you stay stuck as a 7-6 mid level SEC team


Stuck?  They've been 5-7 the last two years, that'd be an improvement.  7-6 also implies they'll win a bowl game, which is very generous of you.

As a lifelong Vanderbilt fan, I would just like to add -

AAAAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

/ATFD
 
2013-02-06 10:14:15 AM

Hang On Voltaire: PsyLord: Here's an idea, stop paying coaches those ginormous salaries and/or buying out their contracts.

and you stay stuck as a 7-6 mid level SEC team


So?
 
2013-02-06 10:38:06 AM

SlothB77: The problem is most of the the money the athletic departments make does *not* get reinvested back into the athletic departments.  That money goes towards other uses within the universities - new classroom buildings, new dorms, administrator pay, new dining halls, teacher pay, new research equipment, etc.  So the athletic departments need to make enough money to support themselves and many other parts of the university.  They save money by only paying their athletes compensation in the form of scholarships.

My alma mater, Maryland, spent all the money they made from a National Champion Men's basketball team and decent football team for a couple years on infrastructure (new fitness center, new basketball arena) and then when Maryland athletics went back to sucking again, went into major debt.


completely false.  in fact even in the good years the tennessee athletic department gave the university $7 million per year, which they they are no longer doing given the current troubles.  and that's a big-time football school.  at most university/colleges the general fund supports the athletic department.  there's no gold in them stadiums.
 
2013-02-06 10:40:10 AM

js34603: A Fark Handle: js34603: So Tennesee is 200 mil in debt because of the athletic programs?

Or because of incompetence and mismanagement of the entire University?

just the athletic program.  lots of debt from facility upgrades and coaching buyouts combined with poor attendance.  next time you could read the farking article.

So they upgraded facilities they couldn't afford to upgrade and had to buy out coaches they never should have hired?

Sounds like incompetence and mismanagement. But hey, it's a lot easier to blame the athletics programs than admit incompetence.


those are all decision of the athletic department, hence my statement that it was the athletics department fault, not the general university (which is also poorly run, probably because it's in a state that hates education).
 
2013-02-06 10:43:48 AM

The Third Man: Nanny Statesman: My understanding is that one of the main advantages of prominent sports teams for universities is that they increase alumni donations.  I doubt that kind of thing is included in these numbers.

I work at a D-I school, and I think athletic fundraising accounted for about 2% of our last campaign.  A big gift to athletics at most schools is in the six-figure range; big gifts to name academic buildings, programs, etc. are going to be in the seven or eight figure range (or nine figure if you're an Ivy League school).  Apart from a few donors like Phil Knight, T. Boone Pickens, and the Walton family, donors to universities give their biggest gifts to academic divisions.

I think it's a myth that athletics encourages alumni donations, to be perfectly honest.  When our basketball team was doing well, we didn't see any significant increase in donations, and I've heard the same from colleagues on that score.


all of that is true, but perhaps athletics helped create the emotional ties that lead to donations on both the athletic and the academic sides.  i think it would be very hard to prove one way or the other, but it's a theory that folks have float out before.
 
2013-02-06 11:04:44 AM

Hang On Voltaire: ModernPrimitive01: As a life long Vols fan that follows it all pretty closely let me say that I think it's a combination of buying out so many different coaching staffs (Fulmer, Kiffin, Dooley, and Pearl),

You did not buy out Kiffin's contract, as a matter of fact, USC had to pay Tennessee.  Pearl was fired for cause IIRC and thus there was no buyout. Dooley only had one year left on his contract


Most new coaches bring in their own staff so I wasn't just referring to the head coaches themselves but to all of their assistants we paid to leave, some of which were given stupidly good contracts. Sal Sunseri, an unproven defensive coordinator who led the Vols to the worst defense in the history of the school was given a contract of 800k a year through 2015. Even after taking a job at FSU, UT is still paying him 50k a month
 
2013-02-06 11:06:45 AM

ModernPrimitive01: Hang On Voltaire: ModernPrimitive01: As a life long Vols fan that follows it all pretty closely let me say that I think it's a combination of buying out so many different coaching staffs (Fulmer, Kiffin, Dooley, and Pearl),

You did not buy out Kiffin's contract, as a matter of fact, USC had to pay Tennessee.  Pearl was fired for cause IIRC and thus there was no buyout. Dooley only had one year left on his contract

Most new coaches bring in their own staff so I wasn't just referring to the head coaches themselves but to all of their assistants we paid to leave, some of which were given stupidly good contracts. Sal Sunseri, an unproven defensive coordinator who led the Vols to the worst defense in the history of the school was given a contract of 800k a year through 2015. Even after taking a job at FSU, UT is still paying him 50k a month


Dooley gets another 5 million and Jim Chaney, our offensive coordinator from last year, will get 600k despite getting hired on at Arkansas for a job making 550k
 
2013-02-06 11:17:20 AM
Sucking will do that to you, and the fact they have a huge stadium and rarely fill it up unless the opposing teams drive up to watch the beat down, along with their construction costs to make it bigger.....

Still only 20 of the top programs make money with most losing money but without football a lot of donations dry up so people keep the programs going.
 
2013-02-06 11:22:57 AM
ModernPrimitive01:

Most new coaches bring in their own staff so I wasn't just referring to the head coaches themselves but to all of their assistants we paid to leave, some of which were given stupidly good contracts. Sal Sunseri, an unproven defensive coordinator who led the Vols to the worst defense in the history of the school was given a contract of 800k a year through 2015. Even after taking a job at FSU, UT is still paying him 50k a month

Ugh.  Why can't people just say "hey you're right.  Sorry about that"  You said you were paying Kiffin's buyout which you are absolutely not since you don't pay a buyout for a guy who resigns and you said you were paying Pearl's buyout which ended last June.
 
2013-02-06 11:57:57 AM

Hang On Voltaire: ModernPrimitive01:

Most new coaches bring in their own staff so I wasn't just referring to the head coaches themselves but to all of their assistants we paid to leave, some of which were given stupidly good contracts. Sal Sunseri, an unproven defensive coordinator who led the Vols to the worst defense in the history of the school was given a contract of 800k a year through 2015. Even after taking a job at FSU, UT is still paying him 50k a month

Ugh.  Why can't people just say "hey you're right.  Sorry about that"  You said you were paying Kiffin's buyout which you are absolutely not since you don't pay a buyout for a guy who resigns and you said you were paying Pearl's buyout which ended last June.


Can't we just agree that I should have said the coaching staffs of the coaches instead of just mentioning the 3 head coaches and i concede we aren't paying for Kiffin and Pearl specifically? that way this doesn't escalate to potato
 
2013-02-06 12:22:37 PM
ModernPrimitive01:

Can't we just agree that I should have said the coaching staffs of the coaches instead of just mentioning the 3 head coaches and i concede we aren't paying for Kiffin and Pearl specifically? that way this doesn't escalate to potato

Can't we just agree you were wrong.  Why is this hard to admit?  This is why the internets suck
 
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