New athletic department financial info: Where Pitt Stands

CrazyPaco

Head Coach
Jul 5, 2001
14,446
5,400
113
USAToday has published new revenue, expense, and subsidy information for public universities for FY '14. That is 2013-14 sports season, our first in the ACC (and Maryland's last), and the last for Rutgers and Louisville in the AAC.

Pitt is not included in this report because it is operationally private and not subject to open records requests (although Penn State provided their information).

For FY'14, according to the state's Synder report, Pitt's athletic department had $49,234,695 in revenue on $57,023,655 in expenses, meaning a $7,788,960 subsidization to make up the difference provided from the university's general operations. That is a 13.66% subsidy of the overall budget.

Compared to the 53 public Power 5 universities (including Rutgers & Louisville) in the USAToday report Pitt would therefore be ranked the following out of 54 total universities.

In annual athletic revenue Pitt would rank #54 with $49.2 million(dead last among current Power 5 schools that USAToday has numbers for). Pitt generates over $5 million less than the next lowest revenue generator, Washington State. Let that sink in.

In total athletic budget, Pitt ranked #52 at $57 million, ahead of only Mississippi State and Utah.

In total athletic department subsidization, at $7.8 million, Pitt would rank #15, between Arizona and Louisville. Rutgers (at $36.3 million) was over twice as much as second place Maryland ($18.1 million). You are looking at major reasons why there is major strife between academics and athletics at Rutgers, and why UMD was such easy pickens for the Big Ten.

In % subsidy of the total athletic budget, Pitt would rank #9 with a 13.66% subsidy. That is just ahead of Arizona State and behind UVA. Again, Rutgers led the way with a massive 47.41% subsidy, followed by Maryland at 24.68%.

You can't get around the terrible revenue generation of Pitt's athletic department. People need to heed Coach Narduzzi's call for support, or the athletic department will continue to struggle.
 
Last edited:

Pghfan

Board of Trustee
Dec 21, 2001
29,177
2,005
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more proof that Pederson needed to go.. Need an AD that can build support from the alumni, not alienate it..
 

pitt-girl

Board of Trustee
Gold Member
Mar 16, 2004
27,501
23,568
113
UMD is in major financial trouble. My son just finished his first year and while the academics were fine, everything about that place, most especially the housing, is a disaster. They actually imposed a tuition raise in JANUARY of this year, somewhat unprecedented for public universities which set their tuition after state's budgets are approved in July. It was a bit of a hostage situation - you are mid-year and no time to go elsewhere. They just announced a fall 2015 minimum 5% tuition increase for instate kids (I shudder to think what it will be for out-of-state) PLUS a new surcharge (can't remember the exact number but it was substantial) for their most in demand undergraduate schools - business, computer science and engineering, that will be escalating until 2018. The state is in financial disrepair. (Not starting a political fight but perhaps that's why the state unbelievably elected a Republican governor in November. Did you know they have a "rain tax"?). I'm proud to say that my son has transferred to the school he probably should have been in all along - The University of Pittsburgh. Good riddance College Park.
 

Franb

Junior
Jun 25, 2002
3,083
1,684
113
USAToday has published new revenue, expense, and subsidy information for public universities for FY '14. That is 2013-14 sports season, our first in the ACC (and Maryland's last), and the last for Rutgers and Louisville in the AAC.

Pitt is not included in this report because it is operationally private and not subject to open records requests (although Penn State provided their information).

For FY'14, according to the state's Synder report, Pitt's athletic department had $49,234,695 in revenue on $57,023,655 in expenses, meaning a $7,788,960 subsidization to make up the difference provided from the university's general operations. That is a 13.66% subsidy of the overall budget.

Compared to the 53 public Power 5 universities (including Rutgers & Louisville) in the USAToday report Pitt would therefore be ranked the following out of 54 total universities.

In annual athletic revenue Pitt would rank #54 with $49.2 million(dead last among current Power 5 schools that USAToday has numbers for). Pitt generates over $5 million less than the next lowest revenue generator, Washington State. Let that sink in.

In total athletic budget, Pitt ranked #52 at $57 million, ahead of only Mississippi State and Utah.

In total athletic department subsidization, at $7.8 million, Pitt would rank #15, between Arizona and Louisville. Rutgers (at $36.3 million) was over twice as much as second place Maryland ($18.1 million). You are looking at major reasons why there is major strife between academics and athletics at Rutgers, and why UMD was such easy pickens for the Big Ten.

In % subsidy of the total athletic budget, Pitt would rank #9 with a 13.66% subsidy. That is just ahead of Arizona State and behind UVA. Again, Rutgers led the way with a massive 47.41% subsidy, followed by Maryland at 24.68%.

You can't get around the terrible revenue generation of Pitt's athletic department. People need to heed Coach Narduzzi's call for support, or the athletic department will continue to struggle.

Without getting into the specific numbers involved here, I'm going to suggest a completely different approach to this problem of expense/revenue mismatch. The NCAA has attempted to create a level playing field in college sports by strictly regulating what the schools can spend on athletes, both in recruiting and in compensating them. This same principle could be applied to the total budgets of each sport, at least the "major" sports of football and basketball.

Excluding scholarship costs, which vary between schools, all other expenses could be capped at some number which would enable the schools to reasonably operate on at least a break-even basis. Something like the salary cap in pro sports, only extended to program expenses.

Right now, college sports is like major league baseball - the costs keep going up, as those schools with lots of money keep spending more and more on coaches' salaries and facilities. This forces other schools to spend more in order to stay competitive, just like the Yankees spending on free agents sets the market for the Pirates. The difference with respect to colleges is that Alabama doesn't have to pay any more for its players than Pitt does, so it can use its money to pay top salaries to its coaches and build the best training and practice facilities.

If budgets were equalized, not only would the escalating costs be brought in check, but teams would be on a more or less equal competitive footing. Also, the need to beg alumni to support their teams would not be necessary. No more well-heeled boosters exerting undue influence on athletic programs.

As I see it, college sports are not sustainable in their present form. Paying players is only going to increase the costs, and the subsequent demand for even more money and support.
 
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rc79

Assistant Coach
Gold Member
Aug 29, 2002
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Rome wasn't built in a day and the new team is essentially starting up from ground zero. So it's going to take time to move up lists. At least a set of talented people will be in place by autumn.
 

cruzer

All Conference
Jul 27, 2001
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Rome wasn't built in a day and the new team is essentially starting up from ground zero. So it's going to take time to move up lists. At least a set of talented people will be in place by autumn.
Yes indeed. It's always faster to burn a city to the ground then to build it from the ashes.
 

ratking17

Head Coach
Mar 15, 2009
12,480
6,153
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Without getting into the specific numbers involved here, I'm going to suggest a completely different approach to this problem of expense/revenue mismatch. The NCAA has attempted to create a level playing field in college sports by strictly regulating what the schools can spend on athletes, both in recruiting and in compensating them. This same principle could be applied to the total budgets of each sport, at least the "major" sports of football and basketball.

Excluding scholarship costs, which vary between schools, all other expenses could be capped at some number which would enable the schools to reasonably operate on at least a break-even basis. Something like the salary cap in pro sports, only extended to program expenses.

Right now, college sports is like major league baseball - the costs keep going up, as those schools with lots of money keep spending more and more on coaches' salaries and facilities. This forces other schools to spend more in order to stay competitive, just like the Yankees spending on free agents sets the market for the Pirates. The difference with respect to colleges is that Alabama doesn't have to pay any more for its players than Pitt does, so it can use its money to pay top salaries to its coaches and build the best training and practice facilities.

If budgets were equalized, not only would the escalating costs be brought in check, but teams would be on a more or less equal competitive footing. Also, the need to beg alumni to support their teams would not be necessary. No more well-heeled boosters exerting undue influence on athletic programs.

As I see it, college sports are not sustainable in their present form. Paying players is only going to increase the costs, and the subsequent demand for even more money and support.

Unfortunately, who is going to step up and be the adult here to implement it. I actually do think the model is sustainable, because, my opinion is expansion and conference realignment isn't done. Once the big dogs of the SEC get together look out. Currently, the cut the SEC gets is split 14 ways. Would the LSU's, Bama's, Auburn's, Florida's, etc...get the same tv $$$ by getting rid of the Vanderbilts, Ole Miss, Miss ST's, of the SEC? Would the current Big10 split 14 ways, be the same tv $$$ if Ohio ST, Michigan, Penn St, Nebraska, split away and leave Indiana, Purdue, Illinois behind? Once these schools realize the TV money would be the same, and they could split the profits not by 14 teams, but by 8, then you are going to see the true separation of the "Haves vs the Have Nots." And as a Pitt fan, I would actually be okay with us being left behind. Because I believe that unless you have a "Salary cap" like one you are proposing, then I don't believe Pitt can compete under the current arms race model...

(Good post by the way...)
 
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Sean Miller Fan

Lair Hall of Famer
Oct 30, 2001
54,059
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Without getting into the specific numbers involved here, I'm going to suggest a completely different approach to this problem of expense/revenue mismatch. The NCAA has attempted to create a level playing field in college sports by strictly regulating what the schools can spend on athletes, both in recruiting and in compensating them. This same principle could be applied to the total budgets of each sport, at least the "major" sports of football and basketball.

Excluding scholarship costs, which vary between schools, all other expenses could be capped at some number which would enable the schools to reasonably operate on at least a break-even basis. Something like the salary cap in pro sports, only extended to program expenses.

Right now, college sports is like major league baseball - the costs keep going up, as those schools with lots of money keep spending more and more on coaches' salaries and facilities. This forces other schools to spend more in order to stay competitive, just like the Yankees spending on free agents sets the market for the Pirates. The difference with respect to colleges is that Alabama doesn't have to pay any more for its players than Pitt does, so it can use its money to pay top salaries to its coaches and build the best training and practice facilities.

If budgets were equalized, not only would the escalating costs be brought in check, but teams would be on a more or less equal competitive footing. Also, the need to beg alumni to support their teams would not be necessary. No more well-heeled boosters exerting undue influence on athletic programs.

As I see it, college sports are not sustainable in their present form. Paying players is only going to increase the costs, and the subsequent demand for even more money and support.
You are right and this is why they lost the O'Bannon lawsuit. The judge said they conspired to set a salary cap of $0 for the us of their names, images, and likenesses which is illegal and instead of paying the players, they used those "savings" to compensate the coaches more and build and renovate facilities.

So, I agree that even though we're going to be making more money from the ACC, we're going to have spend an equal amount just to keep up with the Joneses. Its kinda like getting a huge raise but being told you had to move into a more expensive home, with more upkeep, higher property taxes, etc. But at the end of the day, you have the same disposable income.
 

PSU_Nut

Scholarship
May 29, 2001
208
97
28
Without getting into the specific numbers involved here, I'm going to suggest a completely different approach to this problem of expense/revenue mismatch. The NCAA has attempted to create a level playing field in college sports by strictly regulating what the schools can spend on athletes, both in recruiting and in compensating them. This same principle could be applied to the total budgets of each sport, at least the "major" sports of football and basketball.

Excluding scholarship costs, which vary between schools, all other expenses could be capped at some number which would enable the schools to reasonably operate on at least a break-even basis. Something like the salary cap in pro sports, only extended to program expenses.

Right now, college sports is like major league baseball - the costs keep going up, as those schools with lots of money keep spending more and more on coaches' salaries and facilities. This forces other schools to spend more in order to stay competitive, just like the Yankees spending on free agents sets the market for the Pirates. The difference with respect to colleges is that Alabama doesn't have to pay any more for its players than Pitt does, so it can use its money to pay top salaries to its coaches and build the best training and practice facilities.

If budgets were equalized, not only would the escalating costs be brought in check, but teams would be on a more or less equal competitive footing. Also, the need to beg alumni to support their teams would not be necessary. No more well-heeled boosters exerting undue influence on athletic programs.

As I see it, college sports are not sustainable in their present form. Paying players is only going to increase the costs, and the subsequent demand for even more money and support.
The problem is they can never cap coaches salaries. They tried to do that in the 90s with restricted earnings coaches. A lawsuit was filed and the NCAA lost millions. On top how can you cap budgets? Are you going to say Penn State has to have the same budget as Pitt while Penn State has to maintain a 100k seat stadium while Pitt has no maintenance costs? How schools in cities who have to pay more because of COL. Should schools like Pitt and Rutgers have the same budget as say Kansas State or Texas Tech where cost of living is very low.
 

DC_Area_Panther

Head Coach
Jul 7, 2001
13,257
4,376
113
Make all non-revenue sports non-scholarship and have those teams limited to playing within a 300 mile bus trip of the home campus and the economics gets much much better. But wait--Title IX won't let that happen! Oh well--I almost forgot we live in a PC world where common sense and economics are trumped by ideology.
 

Western PA

Prep
May 29, 2001
5
0
1
Without getting into the specific numbers involved here, I'm going to suggest a completely different approach to this problem of expense/revenue mismatch. The NCAA has attempted to create a level playing field in college sports by strictly regulating what the schools can spend on athletes, both in recruiting and in compensating them. This same principle could be applied to the total budgets of each sport, at least the "major" sports of football and basketball.

Excluding scholarship costs, which vary between schools, all other expenses could be capped at some number which would enable the schools to reasonably operate on at least a break-even basis. Something like the salary cap in pro sports, only extended to program expenses.

Right now, college sports is like major league baseball - the costs keep going up, as those schools with lots of money keep spending more and more on coaches' salaries and facilities. This forces other schools to spend more in order to stay competitive, just like the Yankees spending on free agents sets the market for the Pirates. The difference with respect to colleges is that Alabama doesn't have to pay any more for its players than Pitt does, so it can use its money to pay top salaries to its coaches and build the best training and practice facilities.

If budgets were equalized, not only would the escalating costs be brought in check, but teams would be on a more or less equal competitive footing. Also, the need to beg alumni to support their teams would not be necessary. No more well-heeled boosters exerting undue influence on athletic programs.

As I see it, college sports are not sustainable in their present form. Paying players is only going to increase the costs, and the subsequent demand for even more money and support.
I believe there was a Supeme Court case years ago that ruled college caps on coaching salaries to be in violation of anti-trust laws. I would guess that. cap on total athletic department spending, which includes salaries, would meet the same fate.
 

rpost3

Head Coach
Aug 6, 2008
14,210
571
113
Pitt Athletics deserves it. Hopefully the Board and the new regime realizes the obvious - a little goodwill to potential customers/donors and a legitimate effort to win are required in a town where the people don't need college sports to be entertained.
 

rpost3

Head Coach
Aug 6, 2008
14,210
571
113
Make all non-revenue sports non-scholarship and have those teams limited to playing within a 300 mile bus trip of the home campus and the economics gets much much better. But wait--Title IX won't let that happen! Oh well--I almost forgot we live in a PC world where common sense and economics are trumped by ideology.

Well I guess it's that time of year where one of our brilliant AM Radio-trained economists advocate Pitt leave not just the ACC, but Division 1 altogether.
 

Franb

Junior
Jun 25, 2002
3,083
1,684
113
I believe there was a Supeme Court case years ago that ruled college caps on coaching salaries to be in violation of anti-trust laws. I would guess that. cap on total athletic department spending, which includes salaries, would meet the same fate.
I have no legal expertise, but some pro sports leagues have salary caps, and the NCAA has effectively capped athletes' compensation. How would a cap on expenses be any different? My wages are capped by the hourly rate that is set for my job title - isn't every employee capped at whatever the employer sets for the job classification?
 

Western PA

Prep
May 29, 2001
5
0
1
Not an attorney either, but my understanding is that salary caps work in pro sports because they are agreed to in collective bargaining with players unions. No such Union exists that could negotiate such an agreement with assistant college coaches, for example. Your company can get by with setting wage scales because it is not done in conjunction with other companies in that business and you have the option of moving to another company where the pay scale is not capped by industry-wide agreement. Going back to my assistant college coaches again, they would have no place to ply their trade within their industry where a cartel agreement does not result in a restriction in their pay. And, again, I am not an attorney.
 

Franb

Junior
Jun 25, 2002
3,083
1,684
113
Not an attorney either, but my understanding is that salary caps work in pro sports because they are agreed to in collective bargaining with players unions. No such Union exists that could negotiate such an agreement with assistant college coaches, for example. Your company can get by with setting wage scales because it is not done in conjunction with other companies in that business and you have the option of moving to another company where the pay scale is not capped by industry-wide agreement. Going back to my assistant college coaches again, they would have no place to ply their trade within their industry where a cartel agreement does not result in a restriction in their pay. And, again, I am not an attorney.
Thanks for your clarification - I suspected that the union factor may have been what makes the difference. In any case, it still seems to me that the colleges should be able to come to some agreement to control their costs if they wanted to. Otherwise, there is no end to rising expenses - provided that fans are willing to continue to "donate" money to feed the beast.
 
Jan 9, 2002
3,225
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48
Paco,

Fascinating stuff. A lot of thoughts and questions....
- Do you think the numbers in Pitt's Snyder Report are apples to apples comparison to what's reported in the USA Today numbers?
- Would love to see Pitt's numbers, broken down the same way as USA Today's, and for the past 10 years.
- Given our (supposedly) sweet deal with the Steelers/Rooneys for Heinz Field and the Southside facility, I can't imagine how much more our expenses would be if we owned our own football facilities.
- Oregon's contributions went from $10M in 2007 to $47M in 2013 to $125M in 2014 ? Holy cow. Phil Knight?
- Our fans need to know how poorly we compare with everyone else. We have supposed "fans" on this board who won't even buy season tickets, let alone donate a dime to the sports program. But yet, they're often the loudest complainers and seem to have the highest expectations.
- Do we have any idea what our annual contributions look like? Are they more in the range of $5M, $10M, or $15M ?
- Does our Snyder Report financials subsume the athletics at Pitt's branch campuses?
- Many top schools bring in more in Rights/Licensing revenue alone than we do in Total revenue.
- What are student fees, and why do the revenues of the Virginia schools seem to be disproportionately supported by these fees? See ODU and James Madison in particular.
- Cincinnati has been augmenting their sports programs out of general funds to the tune of about 33% or more for the last few years. Ouch.
 
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SoufOaklin4Life

Lair Hall of Famer
Jan 7, 2004
75,715
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Another State of Mind
Paco,

Fascinating stuff. A lot of thoughts and questions....
- Do you think the numbers in Pitt's Snyder Report are apples to apples comparison to what's reported in the USA Today numbers?
- Would love to see Pitt's numbers, broken down the same way as USA Today's, and for the past 10 years.
- Given our (supposedly) sweet deal with the Steelers/Rooneys for Heinz Field and the Southside facility, I can't imagine how much more our expenses would be if we owned our own football facilities.
- Oregon's contributions went from $10M in 2007 to $47M in 2013 to $125M in 2014 ? Holy cow. Phil Knight?
- Our fans need to know how poorly we compare with everyone else. We have supposed "fans" on this board who won't even buy season tickets, let alone donate a dime to the sports program. But yet, they're often the loudest complainers and seem to have the highest expectations.
- Do we have any idea what our annual contributions look like? Are they more in the range of $5M, $10M, or $15M ?
- Does our Snyder Report financials subsume the athletics at Pitt's branch campuses?
- Many top schools bring in more in Rights/Licensing revenue alone than we do in Total revenue.
- What are student fees, and why do the revenues of the Virginia schools seem to be disproportionately supported by these fees? See ODU and James Madison in particular.
- Cincinnati has been augmenting their sports programs out of general funds to the tune of about 33% or more for the last few years. Ouch.

Our athletic giving is around $8-9mil or there about. I think it's improved marginally since the last published report which compared rates in 2007, of BCS programs we were second to last (ahead of Wash State and Miss State, then). I fact, we were behind most Big East non-football schools.

Our rate at that point in time was half that of WVU...and 1/7th that of UNC.

Not sure how proportionally that all has changed the past 8 years..but, I suspect we have NOT kept up with the Jones'.
 

HailtoPitt

Board of Trustee
Jun 18, 2001
26,236
8,998
113
As he explained...
the government website counts intra-university transfers (ie Pitt's subsidizing athletics) as revenue- which makes it look like we're breaking even- when Pitt isn't.

Which is why I clearly specified expenses and not revenue. Is Pitt transferring expenses too?
 

CrazyPaco

Head Coach
Jul 5, 2001
14,446
5,400
113
Paco,

Fascinating stuff. A lot of thoughts and questions....
- Do you think the numbers in Pitt's Snyder Report are apples to apples comparison to what's reported in the USA Today numbers?
- Would love to see Pitt's numbers, broken down the same way as USA Today's, and for the past 10 years.
- Given our (supposedly) sweet deal with the Steelers/Rooneys for Heinz Field and the Southside facility, I can't imagine how much more our expenses would be if we owned our own football facilities.
- Oregon's contributions went from $10M in 2007 to $47M in 2013 to $125M in 2014 ? Holy cow. Phil Knight?
- Our fans need to know how poorly we compare with everyone else. We have supposed "fans" on this board who won't even buy season tickets, let alone donate a dime to the sports program. But yet, they're often the loudest complainers and seem to have the highest expectations.
- Do we have any idea what our annual contributions look like? Are they more in the range of $5M, $10M, or $15M ?
- Does our Snyder Report financials subsume the athletics at Pitt's branch campuses?
- Many top schools bring in more in Rights/Licensing revenue alone than we do in Total revenue.
- What are student fees, and why do the revenues of the Virginia schools seem to be disproportionately supported by these fees? See ODU and James Madison in particular.
- Cincinnati has been augmenting their sports programs out of general funds to the tune of about 33% or more for the last few years. Ouch.

I cannot state that Pitt's Synder Report numbers are calculated the same way as USAToday's. However, those Pitt numbers seem to be calculated a lot more similar to the US News derived numbers than the Equity in Athletics site. The Synder reports shows both yearly budgets and actual yearly revenues/expenses, along with (in other sections of the report) a listing of every contract over a certain threshold (for instance, you can see how much we pay officials and our rent-a-wins), so they are as clear as you'll get without actually looking at the balance sheets in the AD's office. So, without being able to conclusively say it isn't apples to oranges, it at least doesn't seem to be apples to bananas, which is what the Equity in Athletics website is like. Rest assured, based on this and other publications, Pitt is at or near the bottom in these metrics, even if the $ amounts aren't precisely comparable.
 
Jan 3, 2006
5
2
3
USAToday has published new revenue, expense, and subsidy information for public universities for FY '14. That is 2013-14 sports season, our first in the ACC (and Maryland's last), and the last for Rutgers and Louisville in the AAC.

Pitt is not included in this report because it is operationally private and not subject to open records requests (although Penn State provided their information).

For FY'14, according to the state's Synder report, Pitt's athletic department had $49,234,695 in revenue on $57,023,655 in expenses, meaning a $7,788,960 subsidization to make up the difference provided from the university's general operations. That is a 13.66% subsidy of the overall budget.

Compared to the 53 public Power 5 universities (including Rutgers & Louisville) in the USAToday report Pitt would therefore be ranked the following out of 54 total universities.

In annual athletic revenue Pitt would rank #54 with $49.2 million(dead last among current Power 5 schools that USAToday has numbers for). Pitt generates over $5 million less than the next lowest revenue generator, Washington State. Let that sink in.

In total athletic budget, Pitt ranked #52 at $57 million, ahead of only Mississippi State and Utah.

In total athletic department subsidization, at $7.8 million, Pitt would rank #15, between Arizona and Louisville. Rutgers (at $36.3 million) was over twice as much as second place Maryland ($18.1 million). You are looking at major reasons why there is major strife between academics and athletics at Rutgers, and why UMD was such easy pickens for the Big Ten.

In % subsidy of the total athletic budget, Pitt would rank #9 with a 13.66% subsidy. That is just ahead of Arizona State and behind UVA. Again, Rutgers led the way with a massive 47.41% subsidy, followed by Maryland at 24.68%.

You can't get around the terrible revenue generation of Pitt's athletic department. People need to heed Coach Narduzzi's call for support, or the athletic department will continue to struggle.


Totaling all ACC schools (without Pitt) you get an average subsidy of just under 12%. Pack 12 avg's just over 11% subsidy, while the B12, Big Ten and all avg SEC avg 3% subsidy. Maryland is the one that is the aberration in the ACC numbers at 25% and they of course are no longer there but in the B10. I'm not sure of your assumption that the subsidy is just the revenue minus the expenses because none of the other schools are even close to that.
 
May 21, 2010
21,361
12,242
113
% is one way to look at these numbers but the actual numbers speak to the landscape of the power 5 schools and their athletic budgets. IMHO

QUOTE="FtMillMtneer, post: 141360, member: 8919"]Totaling all ACC schools (without Pitt) you get an average subsidy of just under 12%. Pack 12 avg's just over 11% subsidy, while the B12, Big Ten and all avg SEC avg 3% subsidy. Maryland is the one that is the aberration in the ACC numbers at 25% and they of course are no longer there but in the B10. I'm not sure of your assumption that the subsidy is just the revenue minus the expenses because none of the other schools are even close to that.[/QUOTE]
 

SoufOaklin4Life

Lair Hall of Famer
Jan 7, 2004
75,715
14,121
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Another State of Mind
Is Pitt an academic institution or a football factory (I only say that because we all know where the money is in college sports)? Answer that question first and you can decide if things are being done correctly going forward.
Well, if you want to REALLY decided what is filling up the coffers for the university..

if you're a sports fan you aren't going to like the result of that. Because athletics (even football) contributes a very small percentage of the annual operating budget for the university.

Just for some perspective.
 
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Saboteur

All Conference
Jan 15, 2015
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Many places. but not all
USAToday has published new revenue, expense, and subsidy information for public universities for FY '14. That is 2013-14 sports season, our first in the ACC (and Maryland's last), and the last for Rutgers and Louisville in the AAC.

Pitt is not included in this report because it is operationally private and not subject to open records requests (although Penn State provided their information).

For FY'14, according to the state's Synder report, Pitt's athletic department had $49,234,695 in revenue on $57,023,655 in expenses, meaning a $7,788,960 subsidization to make up the difference provided from the university's general operations. That is a 13.66% subsidy of the overall budget.

Compared to the 53 public Power 5 universities (including Rutgers & Louisville) in the USAToday report Pitt would therefore be ranked the following out of 54 total universities.

In annual athletic revenue Pitt would rank #54 with $49.2 million(dead last among current Power 5 schools that USAToday has numbers for). Pitt generates over $5 million less than the next lowest revenue generator, Washington State. Let that sink in.

In total athletic budget, Pitt ranked #52 at $57 million, ahead of only Mississippi State and Utah.

In total athletic department subsidization, at $7.8 million, Pitt would rank #15, between Arizona and Louisville. Rutgers (at $36.3 million) was over twice as much as second place Maryland ($18.1 million). You are looking at major reasons why there is major strife between academics and athletics at Rutgers, and why UMD was such easy pickens for the Big Ten.

In % subsidy of the total athletic budget, Pitt would rank #9 with a 13.66% subsidy. That is just ahead of Arizona State and behind UVA. Again, Rutgers led the way with a massive 47.41% subsidy, followed by Maryland at 24.68%.

You can't get around the terrible revenue generation of Pitt's athletic department. People need to heed Coach Narduzzi's call for support, or the athletic department will continue to struggle.
Garbage in, garbage out.
Metaphors aside, it didn't take a genius to figure out that Pitt did athletics because it had to do it.
Rome wasn't built in a day but it damn near was destroyed in one. It will take years of effort for Pitt to climb that list....but it is worth it.
 

pittdan77

Athletic Director
Jan 5, 2011
15,293
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The Vast Wasteland of Central Pennsylvania
Well, if you want to REALLY decided what is filling up the coffers for the university..

if you're a sports fan you aren't going to like the result of that. Because athletics (even football) contributes a very small percentage of the annual operating budget for the university.

Just for some perspective.

That was more or less my point. I think the recent push to improve athletics is only to support and promote the University. I'm okay with that. Maybe overstating the obvious.
 

CaptainSidneyReilly

Chancellor
Dec 25, 2006
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Pederson was part of that problem in rallying Pitt Contributors, Alumni, and Fans around supporting Pitt, Pederson was good at taking care of promoting Pederson like Nebraska President said, but he turned off and out many Alumni, and after 14 Years as AD at Pitt never could turn them into a Top 25 Program in winning,and after 5 years at Nebraska actually removed Nebraska from winning in the Top 25 too!

Nordenberg chose keeping Pederson and getting rid of Wannstedt instead of getting rid of both, and Nordenberg gave millions of Pitt Money away to Pederson in the process, and you expected Pitt alumni, contributors,and fans to donate to that kind of failure and return?

Once again, Pederson could not maintain his own Alma Mater Football Program in the Top 25, when it is Top 10 in winning history, and couldn't rebuild Pitt into a Top 25 Program?


It starts with the Chancellor that has to hire an AD that implement his vision, and hire coaches that complete that vision, Pederson was not good at that and 19 years of his failures show it.

Paco,

Fascinating stuff. A lot of thoughts and questions....
- Do you think the numbers in Pitt's Snyder Report are apples to apples comparison to what's reported in the USA Today numbers?
- Would love to see Pitt's numbers, broken down the same way as USA Today's, and for the past 10 years.
- Given our (supposedly) sweet deal with the Steelers/Rooneys for Heinz Field and the Southside facility, I can't imagine how much more our expenses would be if we owned our own football facilities.
- Oregon's contributions went from $10M in 2007 to $47M in 2013 to $125M in 2014 ? Holy cow. Phil Knight?
- Our fans need to know how poorly we compare with everyone else. We have supposed "fans" on this board who won't even buy season tickets, let alone donate a dime to the sports program. But yet, they're often the loudest complainers and seem to have the highest expectations.
- Do we have any idea what our annual contributions look like? Are they more in the range of $5M, $10M, or $15M ?
- Does our Snyder Report financials subsume the athletics at Pitt's branch campuses?
- Many top schools bring in more in Rights/Licensing revenue alone than we do in Total revenue.
- What are student fees, and why do the revenues of the Virginia schools seem to be disproportionately supported by these fees? See ODU and James Madison in particular.
- Cincinnati has been augmenting their sports programs out of general funds to the tune of about 33% or more for the last few years. Ouch.
 

Sean Miller Fan

Lair Hall of Famer
Oct 30, 2001
54,059
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You can't get around the terrible revenue generation of Pitt's athletic department. People need to heed Coach Narduzzi's call for support, or the athletic department will continue to struggle.

To be fair, Pitt needs to focus more on landing some big fish donors. I believe Barnes helped to land 8 or 9 seven figure donations to Utah State athletics in the relatively short-time he was there with most of them being when the Aggies were in the WAC, a lesser league to the league they play in now. I could be wrong but I think Pederson only landed 3 seven figure donations, 2 from the Petersons and 1 from Pelusi. Considering how you would think and hope that Pitt would have many more uber-rich fans than Utah State, that lack of success in winning over the uber-rich is startling.

We could all get on each other and tell each other to give more and yea, us little guys, collectively, make a difference but if you want to grow this athletic department, you better hope that Barnes is playing a lot of golf and attending a lot of functions with uber-rich Pitt alums.