UNLV Leads The NCAA In Athletic Subsides

Paying college athletes has been the rage of late and is even being 'looked into' by new NCAA President Mark Emert and even more recently from Kentucky Wildcat basketball coach John Calipari who envisions a split from the NCAA to form a super-division -- or something.

USA Today released a list of all public NCAA schools and the amount of subsides that athletic departments need from student fees, direct and indirect institution support and direct state support; the percentage is the portion of revenue that comes from such funds.

After reviewing the details, it seems virtually impossible for schools to find more money to pay student-athletes, or even just football players. Only seven schools: Nebraska, LSU, Oklahoma, Purdue (Huh? Must be hoarding that Big 10 Network cash), Ohio State, Texas and Texas A&M had zero percent in subsidies in 2010. That means those seven schools out of 219 needed no money from the state, student fees or any assistance from their school to fund their sports programs.

So, where does that money come from them if paying at least football players is to become a reality? The Big 10 and SEC which make a boat load of revenue have only three schools who needed no outside help. The percentage can depend on the budget because just looking at Oregon who needed only two percent of subsides and that amounted to just over $2.6 million.

So, it seems highly unlikely that paying any college athlete will happen anytime soon. Even the giant schools need subsidies to keep their athletic program running.

As for the Mountain West below is a chart of where current and future members stand. Air Force and TCU are not includes since they are private schools. While UNLV easily leads the MWC in subsidies they also needed the most amount of the 215 schools. The next closest FBS school is Eastern Michigan and UNLV outpaces them by $12 million.

This list is 2010 numbers, the USA Today article lists both, and here is exactly how USA Today explains the numbers:

Subsidies are calculated using revenue categories from the school's NCAA financial reports: student fees, direct and indirect institution support and direct state support; the percentage is the portion of revenue that comes from such funds.

  • Boise State  29% $10,657,075
  • Hawaii  29% $10,543,347
  • Colorado State  50% $13,345,067
  • Wyoming 52% $13,949,891
  • San Diego State  52% $16,966,734
  • New Mexico  36% $13,530,772
  • UNLV 60% $34,073,391
  • Nevada 42% $9,699,557
  • Fresno State  28% $7,504,866

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