State athletics budgets to grow by $7.2 million

Iowa's budget up $4.5m from 2013; ISU up $14 million over two years

Published: August 1 2013 | 1:26 pm - Updated: 28 March 2014 | 6:30 pm in

IOWA CITY The cost of doing athletics business at Iowa's three public universities continues to soar.

Athletics department budgets at Iowa, Iowa State and Northern Iowa will increase by more than $7.2 million for the 2014 fiscal year, according to documents released Thursday by the state Board of Regents.

Iowa's athletics budget will boost by $4.5 million to nearly $84.3 million, continuing the department's four-year trend of annual increases between $4 million and $6 million. Northern Iowa's budget leaps by more than $700,000 to $12.92 million.

Iowa State's budget rises $3.4 million to $60.6 million, but the department's overall ledger has surged by nearly $14 million over the last two years. ISU will receive $22.35 million from the Big 12 this fiscal year, nearly $6.3 million more than in 2012. Also, ISU athletics' fundraising also has grown by $4.5 million the last two years.

Iowa and Iowa State are self-supporting athletics departments and receive no general university support.

Iowa expects its football income to drop by $500,000. Last year the school played seven home games and drew a $1 million guarantee to face Northern Illinois at Soldier Field. This year, the Hawkeyes have a true road game at Iowa State and will not pick up a guarantee.

Iowa forecasts a $350,000 increase in basketball ticket sales to $3.21 million. Last year football, basketball and wrestling eclipsed ticket estimates by a combined $950,000.The school anticipates a significant jump in foundation support, from $8.84 million to $12.9 million this year, and budgets nearly $25.5 million from the Big Ten, up from $25.1 million last year. The department estimates modest hikes in sport-specific expenses, but the debt service for facilities grows from $14.6 million to $16.38 million.

ISU calculates football ticket revenue to jump by $1.85 million to $10.1 million, a 22.3 percent leap. Last year the Cyclones' football ticket revenue exceeded its budget by nearly $1.15 million. The department raised basketball ticket prices for the first time since 2007 and expects a climb of $775,000. Last year, the men's basketball program topped estimates by $575,000.

The bulk of UNI's revenues come from the university. While general funds for athletics operations ($2.914 million) and scholarships ($1.283 million) remain flat, income from student activity fees jump by $258,382 to $1.75 million.

UNI's football income expects to drop by $750,000 after not picking up a second guaranteed gate. Last year UNI earned $950,000 to play at Wisconsin and Iowa. The school does budget for a $173,000 increase in men's basketball revenue.


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