Kansas State tops list of profitable athletic departments
05/04/2012 5:00 AM
05/04/2012 3:19 PM
By bringing in close to $23 million in net income, Kansas State was the most profitable athletic department in the country during the 2010-11 fiscal year, according to an ESPN report.
The report, which examined numbers from 99 public schools in the Football Bowl Subdivision, indicated K-State brought in nearly $70 million in revenue with $46.5 million in total expenses.
Rounding out the top five were Texas, LSU, Alabama and Florida.
The Longhorns brought in close to $16.6 million. Other profitable Big 12 schools were Oklahoma (8), Oklahoma State (10) and Texas A&M (11). Only 19 athletic departments showed a profit.
K-State athletic director John Currie was unavailable for comment Friday. Assistant athletic director of communications Kenny Lannou said the numbers were reflective of a strong fiscal year, but cautioned they could be skewed when compared to other universities.
“We had a great year, but we didn’t put $23 million in the bank,” Lannou said. “We’re probably in the neighborhood of a $3-$4 million cash surplus.”
The Wildcats are in the middle of two major fundraising campaigns. With construction on a new basketball practice facility nearing completion and construction on an expanded football press box gearing up, K-State received $26.5 million in donations. Some of those pledges will be made over multiple years, but were listed as fully paid one-time donations on the fiscal report.
“Every school does it differently,” Lannou said. “If a guy comes in says he is going to donate $5 million over five years, some schools will count that $1 million at a time over five years. The way our accounting shop does it, they report that $5 million all in the first year.
“We didn’t get to $23 million just from ticket sales and donors over that year period. That was everything, which included multi-year pledges, so you can see where the numbers can get skewed. But over a period of time, it should even out.”
According to the report, K-State’s other biggest sources of income came from tickets sales, media rights and the Big 12 Conference. The Wildcats sold $14.4 million in tickets, brought in $13.7 million from the conference, $3.59 million in media rights and $3.3 million in student fees.
Its biggest expenses were $9.2 million on coaches, $3.2 million in travel, $2.17 million in marketing and $914,411 in recruiting.
Currie has led a financial turnaround since coming to K-State in 2009. The year before he arrived, K-State was running at a $2.8 million deficit.
Join the Discussion
The Wichita Eagle is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.