Impact of Mizzou, A&M Yet to be Seen
Many in the media are speculating the economic impact the additions of the University of Missouri and Texas A&M University will have on the Southeastern Conference, but the effect is not yet apparent, officials said.
“It remains to be seen from a financial standpoint,” said Charles Bloom, a spokesman with SEC Media Relations.
Television plays a large role in the revenues each school in the SEC will see.
“We are in the process of reviewing our television arrangement with CBS and ESPN, so what happens there may have been a result of the addition, but we normally don’t release those figures,” Bloom said.
An SEC sports channel “has been speculated in the media, but we have not addressed that specifically,” he said.
Revenues are split evenly among the schools, and this year the revenues in the SEC will be stretched from division among 12 schools to division among 14 schools, Bloom said.
Also, the Big 12 is withholding a combined $25.3 million from the new SEC school’s projected distribution, according a report published by Bloomberg. Less than half of that figure, or $12.4 million, is being withheld from Texas A&M.
“The [Mizzou] Athletic Department is just going to have to pay it,” said Andrew Grinch, associate athletic director of Strategic Communications at Missouri, of the withheld funds that were supposed to be a part of this year’s budget. “We’re going to budget for it and pay for it either out of reserves or incremental revenue.”
Revenue should cover the funds that are withheld from each school. In the 2009-2010 school year, the Mizzou football team alone brought in over $25.3 million in revenue, while Texas A&M’s football team brought in over $41.9 million in revenue, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal.
When Arkansas left the Southwest Conference to join the SEC in 1991, there was no settlement paid to the SWC, said Kevin Trainor, associate athletic director for Public Relations at Arkansas.
Both schools move from the Big 12, where revenues were split between only 10 schools and are receiving a smaller distribution from their former conference, but officials with both institutions are confident in the move.
“The bottom line for Texas A&M’s decision to join the SEC was doing what is best for the school,” said Alan Cannon, associate athletic director of media relations. “President [R. Bowen] Loftin has called it a 100-year decision and that is based upon the stability and strength of the SEC in both academics and athletics.”
In the 2012 bowl season, eight of the 10 Big 12 schools were in bowl games, and six of those teams won their bowl. Nine of the 12 SEC schools were in bowl games with six winning.
Both Mizzou and Texas A&M won their bowl games; if the same SEC schools that made and won bowl games return in 2013, and if Mizzou and Texas A&M are able to return to bowl games in 2013, then there will be more revenue to split between the 14 schools, as teams are paid to attend the bowl as well as if they win the bowl game.
“We do have a new bowl in our arrangement,” Bloom said. “The Independence Bowl is now one of our bowls. It just depends on how many teams we get into those games.”
Though Arkansas will receive only 1/14 of the distribution to SEC schools with the expansion, this should not hurt the program. According to the same report in the Wall Street Journal, the Razorback football team brought in over $48.5 million in revenue during the 2009-2010 school year.