Study Shows Increased DI Spending on Academics

On October 2, 2009, the NCAA reported that spending on academic support for student-athletes remained steady or increased at nearly 92 percent of Division I institutions since 2007, despite the national economic downturn. The study found that most schools experienced between a 1 to 20 percent increase in total spending on academic programs over the last two years, with 12 percent reporting even greater increases. At the same time, overall reductions on athletics spending were identified. Football Bowl Subdivision members reported spending more on academic-support services than their counterparts in the Football Championship Subdivision and Division I programs without football. The median total academic-support budget reported at the FBS level was $655,000, compared with about $150,000 in other subdivisions. Similarly, more FBS institutions reported greater use of academic resources among their student-athletes than those in other subdivisions.

According to the NCAA, the study also showed that more institutions reported coaches becoming more supportive of the academic success of their student-athletes, an effect tied directly to the increase in academic standards brought by enhanced progress-toward-degree requirements and other policies established by the Academic Performance Program.

The findings were part of an NCAA study this summer of academic-support services for student-athletes at Division I institutions. The National Association of Academic Advisors for Athletics (N4A) and the National Academic Advising Association (NACADA) assisted with the survey, which was a follow-up to a similar study in 1998.