Ohio State is stepping up the level of difficulty in the non-conference portion of their football schedule in 2014 with the hope that it does not end up costing them a shot in the College Football Playoff. But in terms of money, we know exactly how much it will cost to play those games.
According to the Associated Press, Ohio State will pay over $2 million in guaranteed money to Virginia Tech, Kent State and Cincinnati. All three programs visit the Buckeyes in Ohio Stadium this season. No program will receive more than Cincinnati, of the American Athletic Conference. The in-state program making the trip to Columbus will receive $888,246 in guaranteed money from the Buckeyes. Kent State will receive a nice cut as well, with the AP reporting the MAC program will be paid $850,000 by Ohio State.
Virginia Tech will actually receive the lowest payout. The ACC program will be paid $350,000 by Ohio State, but the Buckeyes and Hokies have a home-and-home agreement in place. The other two games mentioned are one-game deals with Ohio State, so the payout differences are not to be unexpected. Home-and-home deals generally have smaller payouts between schools because there is more of a mutual gain to be had with scheduling security. Ohio State will visit Virginia Tech next season. The added television revenue and exposure is a nice incentive as well.
Ohio State will be on the receiving end of a non-conference payout as well. The Buckeyes will be paid $850,000 by the United States Naval Academy. Navy will play host to Ohio State in Baltimore’s M&T Bank Stadium. That game will be the season opener for both schools on August 30.