The Revenue Race: Athletics Can Sideline Academics

A four-part series published by the Greensboro News-Record focused on the impact of massive amounts of revenue on the operation of major college sports programs.

By noting the impact of a recent academic scandal, the series cautioned about potential issues when “athletics programs cause their schools to sacrifice some of their scruples for a chance to compete at the highest level of college sports.”

The News-Record cited the 2010 Knight Commission report, Restoring the Balance, and the report’s data that showed, “for the 2009-10 school year, universities with Football Bowl Subdivision programs spent about 6.7 times more on their athletes than the schools spent on their students.”

“Athletics funding per student-athlete has risen 51 percent since 2005, while academic spending per student has increased 23 percent.”

“‘The commission would like to see some framework to tether academic and athletic spending so there are some incentives built into the system to reward institutions for maintaining an appropriate ratio between their athletic spending and academic spending,’ said Knight Commission Executive Director Amy Perko, who is based in Fayetteville. ‘Some of the programs that do have the ability to generate significant sums of revenue, it would give them an incentive to put some of that money into their academic programs instead of just increasing the athletic spending per athlete.'”

“If athletics spending is not reined in, Perko said, the concern is that athletics departments will emphasize the ‘athlete’ at the expense of the ‘student.'”

For the complete series, link below:

March 14, 2013: Realignment’s pace has quickened, and it’s not over.

March 13, 2013: The revenue race: Athletics can sideline academics

March 12, 2013: College athletics budgets resemble an arms race

March 11, 2013: TV ratings better than ticket sales?