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Ricky Owens
English 1102
Prof. Probst
Research Paper: College sports finances
The world of college sports has always been very exciting to watch and be a part of. The
championships and marketing bring in revenue. But there are often questions and controversies
dealing with college sports. Questions that come are, why are colleges making that much money?
are the athletes spending more time at practice than the classrooms? How much money are these
universities bringing in? These questions come up because some colleges/universities do bring in
a lot of revenue. When it also comes to budget cuts some believe that academics often get cut
before athletics. Budget cuts are when the schools run low on money and have to cut some
programs. Another controversial question that often comes up involves college coaches why are
universities paying all these college coaches big money. College sports finances follows and
discusses what goes on in the financing aspect of college athletics. Also follows how they bring
in revenue, how college coaches are recruited and why they are paid so high, the stress it brings
on the athletes along with articles from scholarly authors. Although College Sports are very
exciting to watch, it also has its fair share of questions and controversy involving the budget and
athletes, the budgets should be spread fair and evenly among athletics and academics, which.
As previously mentioned college sports bring excitement to sports fans. Events such as
The National Championships for football and basketball, football bowl games, march madness

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for basketball. Typically, football and basketball are the more popular sports which tend to profit
the most money, not even in college but in the sports world in general. As said before march
madness in march and the bowl games that come in around new year’s tend to be the most
popular, during those events including the national championships are the most popular. Colleges
need revenue or income in order to keep their sports up and running, which is where the
marketing or sponsoring comes into play.
College Programs like many pro teams have to get their teams across. Marketing or
Advertisements is how to get products or brands across. How most college teams get their brand
across is by numerous ways such as, team merchandise, cutting promos during games etc.
Authors Yong Jae Ko and Yu Kyoum Kim describe in their article Determinants of Consumers’
Attitudes Toward a Sports Sponsorship: A Tale from College Athletics about how sponsorships
work in order to get colleges brand across and consumers feel about sponsorships within college
athletics. The article actually has a study to describe what the consumers think and how they feel
towards this. From the text the authors mention how important sponsorships and how much
earnings they can make. “Worldwide spending on sponsorships had reached US$53.3 billion in
2013 and projected to continue to increase in subsequent years, despite severe economic
downturns in many business sectors (IEG Sponsorship Report, 2013).” Ko and Kyoum (185).
Sponsorships is the main way for companies or teams to bring in revenue the study showed how
revenue sponsorships brought in, Ko and Kyoum also stated that “Although the range of
sponsored activities has increased steadily, sports sponsorships remains the most popular with
approximately 70% of sponsorship investment being directed to sports (IEG 2009)”. Ko and
Kyoum (186). Sports Sponsorships are most popular way of sponsorships and good amount of

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investment were focused and went more to sports. Although sports marketing and sponsorships is
needed to bring in revenue, they have methods of advertising to bring revenue into the colleges.
Colleges bring in money often through their sports programs. Questions often come in
like how are some of these universities generating so much money. In Ko and Kyoum article
they gave a brief overview and understanding of sports being the best target for sponsoring and
how much money sponsorships can make. Although sponsoring is a way to bring in revenue,
there has to methods and ideas of sponsoring. Examples of sponsoring include popular sports
brands such as Nike, Adidas, Under Armor etc. offering endorsement deals, others include
promos and magazine covers.
Sponsorships bring in revenue, colleges often have to find a way to advertise and get
sponsorships. Karen Weaver’s A Game Change: Paying for Big Time College Sports describes
that there are issues some colleges with bringing in revenue but also finds out who pays for
college sports. College sports are broken up into conferences, one of the biggest is the Big Ten,
bigger conferences tend generate more money. From A Game Change: Paying for Big Time
College Sports, “Leading the way in the last decade in generating new revenue for cash-strapped
campuses has been the Big Ten Conference, which in august 2007 launched a cable television
called the Big Ten Network”. Weaver (15). A college conference launched its own cable network,
is another way of advertising. It also shows how much money these colleges make and have
enough to where they can launch a cable network. Weaver also says that “That the Big Ten
Network provides a revenue stream of almost $9 Million Dollars per year to each member. All
told, The Big Ten Conference members stand up to reap a minimum of $2.8 Billion over the next
20 years”. The Big Ten Conference idea of advertising the conference will bring in $9 Million a
year and can reach up to $2.8 Billion for the next 20 years. This an example from Weaver’s text

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on how Colleges have to bring in revenue to keep their programs running and successful. Now
that an understanding of how colleges are generating revenue. The money they generate goes to
contracts that are given to college coaches.
College sports need coaching too for the programs to be successful. Colleges like they do
recruiting for players they recruiting for coaching. Not just in college but sports n general a good
college coach can really make a difference not only in winning but building up programs, better
relationships with players and winning championships. The money schools generate also go to
the coaches. To continue on, they have recruiting for coaches like they do for the athletes. They
look for coaches’ character, previous coaching experience and strategies he or she uses to help
lead their team to victory. Coaching relate to the financing aspect because the more teams that
win the more popular they become and their popularity helps market them more. Two authors
Randall S. Thomas & R. Lawrence Van Horn did a study in their article College Football
Coaches’ Pay and Contracts: Are they Overpaid and Unduly Privileged to study whether or not
Universities pay college football coaches too much money. They provide this study by doing a
comparison. They compare college coaches’ employment on the Division 1 level and the
contracts of Corporate CEO’s. College Have recruiting for coaches as they do for players who
can make a difference for the team and who can lead them to victory. They state that overall
College Football is a business that is ran by coaches the same way CEO’s run their business.
Mentioned earlier was the recruitment process when hiring coaches, from the same article
College Football Coaches’ Pay and Contracts: Are they Overpaid and Unduly Privileged
Thomas and Van Horn explain how the process works “First CEOs are frequently internal hires,
whereas college football coaches are almost never internal candidates. Internal candidates have
less leverage in contract negotiations than outsiders”. Thomas and Van Horn (191-192). The

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comparison the two was with coaches and CEOs contracts. An overview of colleges finances
aspect, of why they are popular, how they need revenue or income to keep their programs up and
examples such as the marketing, getting their name across through advertising and sponsorships.
As well, using the money to hire really good coaches in order to keep the program running
smoothly. After discussing the ways colleges bring in income to their sports programs, how much
money they are making from the marketing and sponsoring, and where the money, the money
should be spread out evenly on both sides athletics and academics.
Sports are enjoyable but academics are equally just as important. The classroom is where
students learn more a subject and prepare them for the future. Colleges typically generate enough
just because of the tuition they receive from the students. The money brought in to the schools
should be given to each side.
When there is revenue coming in should be fair. Adam Samson’s Financial Sustainability
of Today’s NCCA Division I Athletics adds another factor in college revenue. “While some of the
top-performing intercollegiate athletic programs maintain a steady revenue system year-in-yearout and collect profit, this is not the case for many NCAA Division I schools across the country”.
Samson (126). Samson’s statement from his article tells how colleges revenue remains a steady
income but in recent times Some Division 1 NCAA schools. The athletes are also under stress
because of the constant traveling. This also add stress on the student athletes as well because,
they are constantly performing and practicing and they cannot enjoy school life. The Article
Radical Reform of intercollegiate Athletics: Antitrust and Public Policy Implications Stephen F.
Ross speaks in his introduction about the athletes not being able enjoy campus life with their
peers. “When football and men’s basketball stars generate millions of dollars but cannot enjoy a

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lifestyle commensurate with many peer students.” The Players perform and work to help get their
schools known for their specific sport.

After viewing and understanding how colleges generate money, college receive income
through their sports programs, advertisements, sponsorships, coaches and often times the players.
Colleges often have trouble generating income it could be from different reasons, but when it
does start to happen they have to do cuts. Cuts are when somethings have to go based on whether
or not there is not enough income. But when there is enough, money should not be spent on just
athletics more than academics and vice versa. It’s only fair that it should be spread out evenly
because, spending on more and not the other does not benefit either side well. By spending both
amounts evenly it benefits the students learning, and the athletes’ performance by spending
revenue evenly.
In conclusion, College sports finances follows collegiate athletics spending and revenue.
Colleges generate money through their sports, sponsors, advertisements and coaches. The
revenue they generate is the millions and have found advertising by even launching their own
cable network. But although colleges sports make all this money, the money should be spent
evenly on both athletics and academics to both help students and student athletes benefit from it.