Pac-12 finances: What to expect when the campus distributions are announced this spring (with help from the SEC)

The college sports earnings season began last week when the SEC released its financial data for the 2023 fiscal year.

Stakeholders were undoubtedly pleased. The conference reported $853 million in revenue, a 6 percent increase over the previous year, and distributed more than $50 million to each campus, according to USA Today.

The results will add context to the Pac-12’s fiscal situation when it reveals FY2023 revenue and campus distributions in a few months. They also underscore the irresponsible spending that placed the Pac-12 on its low path to extinction.

For instance, SEC commissioner Greg Sankey, arguably the most influential and respected figure in college sports, received $3.6 million in compensation.

That’s $500,000 less than former Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott earned in 2015 and almost $2 million less than Scott received at the peak of his exorbitant pay. All in all, Scott received approximately $50 million in compensation during his 13-year contract term — all of it approved by the Pac-12 presidents.

(The annual compensation for current Pac-12 commissioner George Kliavkoff will be disclosed this spring and is expected to be comparable to Sankey’s salary.)

Meanwhile, the SEC distributed an average of $51.3 million per campus in the 2023 fiscal year, per the USA Today report.

When it’s released this spring, the Pac-12’s financial statement for FY2023 is expected to show campus distributions of about $36 million — a Hotline estimate based on data currently available from the campuses.

The Pac-12 has three primary revenue sources. The total is sent to the schools after accounting for conference expenses and the $72 million being withheld by Comcast in the aftermath of the overpayment scandal.

The three revenue buckets are:

— Media rights from the Tier I contracts (ESPN and Fox) and the Pac-12 Networks’ distribution deals.

— The college football postseason (bowls and the playoff)

— The NCAA Tournament

The schools itemize their revenue differently, depending on which of three documents is made public: the NCAA agreed-upon-procedures report; the NCAA statements of revenue and expenses; or the Equity in Athletics Disclosure Act filing.

Complicating matters: The distributions from the Pac-12 to the campuses aren’t identical because of various withholdings that change from year to year.

For instance, Cal’s statement of revenue for FY2023 shows the following:

Media rights: $25.5 million
NCAA distributions: $2.7 million
Conference distributions: $6 million
Total: $34.2 million

Utah’s statement of revenue features the same categories but different amounts:

Media rights: $21.8 million
NCAA distributions: $3.6 million
Pac-12 distributions: $12.7 million
Total: $38.1 million

Meanwhile, Washington State’s website provides the NCAA agreed-upon-procedures report, which itemizes the revenues as follows:

Media rights: $25.5 million
NCAA distributions: $1.6 million
Conference Distributions (Non Media and Non Football Bowl): $8.8 million
Conference Distributions of Football Bowl Generated Revenue: $0
Total: $35.9 million

When the Pac-12’s tax filings for FY2023 are made public this spring, a single line item will display the distribution amount that incorporates the aforementioned revenue buckets (after expenses).

If we average the total revenue for the three schools noted above, the result is $36.1 million in conference distributions per campus.

While the figure cited on the Pac-12 tax filings could be a tick higher or lower, it …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Entertainment


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