Monday, September 08, 2008

College Sports Statistics

Interesting things I learned in Sports Law today:
  • Between 16 and 19 out of the roughly 4,200 universities in the country have athletic departments that make a profit in the average year.
  • U of Alabama is one of those universities.
In the first statistic, the 16-19 schools whose athletic departments actually make money were evaluated after receiving a supplement from the main university. Remember in college how, even if you weren't an athlete, they charged you a $50 sports fee? Those 16-19 schools make money after receiving that $50 from every student enrolled in the college. I wonder what that number would be without those fees.

The teacher of this class is Professor Marsh, and here's an excerpt from his bio on the law school site:
[Professor Marsh] was the Faculty Athletic Representative at Alabama from 1996 to 2003, has served on numerous NCAA and Southeastern Conference Committees, and is a past the Chair of the NCAA Division I Committee on Infractions. He has been a member of the Committee on Infractions since 1999.
Anyway, the point is that Prof. Marsh knows what he's talking about. I took a Sports Ethics class in college, and we talked about how few athletic departments actually make money each year. In the south during football season, with a hundred thousand people crowding Tuscaloosa each weekend, it's pretty hard to believe that athletic departments don't generally make money. Whenever I've raised that point, I've been shouted down by people who've seen the spectacle of big time college football, and I understand why it's hard to believe.

Fortunately, Alabama is one of the schools that operates at a profit. But the statistics are surprising, eh?


Anonymous said...

Ah ha! So that's how Alabama can afford to pay its football players and men's basketball players.

Anonymous said...

By the way, "South" should be capitalized in your paragraph beginning with "Anyway." When using that term, you are referring to an area and not a direction. Thus, it should be capitalized.

Anonymous said...

Does his bio really state "...and is a past the Chair..." because if that is how it is typed it's a shame that the error was not picked up prior to him posting that for his class. The word "the" should not be included in this sentence.