Everything’s bigger in the state of Texas. That almost certainly includes piles and piles of cash for sports.
USA Today has released their latest deep dive into the finances of schools across the country and not surprisingly, Texas and Texas A&M are once again 1-2 in the paper’s annual ranking of richest athletic departments in the NCAA. The Longhorns narrowly edged their in-state rivals for the crown this year, bringing in $214.8 million in revenue to the Aggie’s $212 million.
To put that into some context, each school alone earns, per USA Today, nearly nearly as much as the entire set of 12 public schools in the Big Sky conference did in the same year ($233.8 million). Add the two up together and UT and A&M bring in more money than all the public schools combined in all of Conference USA. The same is true when being compared to the MAC as well — not quite the kind of #MACtion you’ll hear administrators bring up.
Maybe more interesting is the gap between the two programs in Texas and the powerhouse names behind them. No. 3 Ohio State checks in at $185.4, some $27 million behind No. 2 A&M. The Aggies are also way out in front of the SEC’s next biggest in Alabama (a $38 million gap) and Georgia ($54 million).
Both Lone Star State schools also spent quite a bit of that intake despite finishing in the black for 2017. Texas set a new record with operating expenses of $207 million for the fiscal year, which is the first time ever a school has crossed the $200 million rubicon in terms of spending and a whopping $32 million more than runner-up Michigan spent in the same time frame.
There was a common theme if you dig into the numbers as six of the top 10 schools in terms of revenue were from the SEC, while eight of the top 25 came from the Big Ten. The Pac-12’s richest program was Oregon at $145 million but USC, as a private school, did not report figures. The ACC seemed to lag behind their Power Five peers on the list, with Florida State the highest-ranked school at No. 13 ($144 million) and eventual national champion Clemson checking in at No. 26 with just $112 million in total revenues.
The full list of revenues and expenses can be found here.