Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Knight Commission Recommends NCAA Athletic Budget Cuts

The Knight Commission has recommended that NCAA college and universities cut certain parts of NCAA programs in an effort to reduce NCAA athletic costs. These include: limiting travel squads, foreign travel, micro sport websites, non-traditional playing seasons, staying in hotels rather than dorms, sport-specific administrative personnel and the number of games played. For non-revenue sports, these would reduce costs, and there would not likely be a reduction in the number of games for college football.

The problem is that just because you cut costs for travel or where teams stay does not mean that overall costs will go down. In other words, even if the suggestions were approved and implemented, it would likely mean that costs in other areas would increase (notably increases in revenue generating sports coaches salaries). Thus this seems to be a well intentioned process that will have no effect on college athletics spending.

As I have argued earlier, if universities want to reduce spending or atleast reduce losses for athletics, the university should require that the athletic program be self-sustaining, and eliminate any cross-subsidization. Thus schools have an incentive to increase revenues (which can lead to other problems) and the university athletic budget is dependent on the revenues generated.

Elsewhere, schools and conferences on their own are talking about reducing costs by freezing salaries and making cuts in travel and other areas.

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