Costly Hotel Stays for Home Games Remain College Football Norm

The Dallas Star-Telegram reported on the cost for football teams at major NCAA Division I-FBS public institutions in Texas to stay overnight in a hotel room, despite their playing at their home campus. Costs for the four institutions examined in the article ranged from $84,000 to $232,000 for the season. Coaches explained the intent of the practice is to keep players focused on the game and away from the distractions of visitors and friends who might want to stay out late on a weekend night.

The article noted that this “expense has been debated for years as universities struggle to pay for the escalating costs of athletic programs.” The article quoted Amy Perko, executive director of the Knight Commission, about the expense. “The bottom line is that football expenses per player are growing twice as fast as spending on other sports and seven times faster than the growth rate in academic spending per student,” Perko said.

The Star-Telegram used the Knight Commission’s NCAA Division I Athletic and Academic Spending database and found FBS schools spent $14,350 per student on academics in 2012, but $115,600 on football for each player. Spending on athletics grew 71 percent between 2005 and 2012 but only 30 percent on academics.

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