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Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
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IWokeUpLikeThis Offline
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Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
03-09-2020 10:19 AM
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
Kentucky and Kansas are getting sneaky with those $14/year fees
03-09-2020 10:22 AM
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quo vadis Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
Schools like JM bury those fees in fine print or on websites because they know they are morally wrong. They are soaking regular students to pay for athletes, and money losing athletic programs that stroke admin and high-roller alumni egos.

Heck, Miami of Ohio squandered huge money buying its own tickets so it could report to the NCAA that it was reaching "attendance" targets for FBS. That is embarrassing and beyond the pale. Here's some rare candor from the article:

"Because Miami does not average 15,000 in actual attendance, Miami uses a portion of the student fee" to buy football tickets, said Claire Wagner, a spokesperson for the school.

Good Lord, good article.

07-coffee3
(This post was last modified: 03-09-2020 11:38 AM by quo vadis.)
03-09-2020 10:30 AM
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The Cutter of Bish Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
"It helps attract and retain students," is usually the college response. And if they ever want to know why they don't see a dime back from alumni, they needn't spend a mint for a consultant to provide a deep-dive into this...

Quote:Abrams noted that when students pay for these fees with student loans, they end up paying even more as those debts accrue interest.
03-09-2020 10:38 AM
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quo vadis Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
(03-09-2020 10:38 AM)The Cutter of Bish Wrote:  "It helps attract and retain students," is usually the college response.

Thing is though, it really doesn't, at least not (ironically) for the schools that seem to soak their students the most. There was a study published last year that showed that truly elite performance in the major sports - like winning a BCS bowl game or making the final AP top 10, or making the Final 4 in men's hoops, did cause a non-trivial increase in student enrollment, which faded out after about 3 years.

IOW's, it really is a "Flutie Effect", you need to win a major bowl like the 1985 Cotton Bowl, and have the Heisman Trophy winner, to get the effect.

All other achievements, even in women's hoops and baseball, had zero impact. And of course 99% of all the schools soaking their students with athletic fees never attain the kind of success needed to gain these benefits.
03-09-2020 10:46 AM
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Wedge Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
If an athletic department wants or needs more money, its first stops ought to be donations, sponsorships and ticket sales. (Real ticket sales, of course, not using university or student money to buy tickets.) Student fees should be used only in very limited amounts and only after maximum effort has been expended in those other areas. Looks like many athletic departments are taking way too much student money while not trying very hard to raise money in the ways they should.
03-09-2020 11:00 AM
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quo vadis Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
(03-09-2020 11:00 AM)Wedge Wrote:  If an athletic department wants or needs more money, its first stops ought to be donations, sponsorships and ticket sales. (Real ticket sales, of course, not using university or student money to buy tickets.) Student fees should be used only in very limited amounts and only after maximum effort has been expended in those other areas. Looks like many athletic departments are taking way too much student money while not trying very hard to raise money in the ways they should.

Admins (like most people) are lazy and soaking students is the easy way out, especially if you can hide the fees in fine print. Stuff like increasing donations, corporate sponsors, and ticket sales is hard, requires hustling and salesmanship, and admins would rather just putter around their cushy offices.
03-09-2020 11:37 AM
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Wolfman Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
That not exactly news. USA today has been compiling the list since 2005. A staggering 174 of the 230 schools listed get more than 1/3 of their budget from student and/or university funds.
03-09-2020 11:40 AM
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DawgNBama Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
Those fees differ from state to state. The state of Virginia is ridiculous with their student fees, I've noticed.
03-09-2020 12:31 PM
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The Cutter of Bish Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
(03-09-2020 11:00 AM)Wedge Wrote:  If an athletic department wants or needs more money, its first stops ought to be donations, sponsorships and ticket sales. (Real ticket sales, of course, not using university or student money to buy tickets.) Student fees should be used only in very limited amounts and only after maximum effort has been expended in those other areas. Looks like many athletic departments are taking way too much student money while not trying very hard to raise money in the ways they should.

Or...why are you fielding D1 athletics? You can't afford it.

Advancement and donations in higher ed is such an intra-institutional competition. I don't know how anyone can do it for very long for a living. And that's heightened when you have major athletics, because the school is attempting to attract money from the same sample population, but pitting employees against each other on how it is to be used.

I think schools would call this a "competing project." It's just a game to see which department can score the cash.

And, really, I'm not surprised athletics aren't good at this. Because athletics should be about sports. Not raising donations. But, schools decentralized their advancement and relations offices so individual units could chase specific people for specific projects. I don't think it's working...this list of who's throwing it back onto the students worse being quite the piece of evidence that it is. The ones that do it well, is pretty much a splinter-faction of alumni and boosters who just stockpile.
(This post was last modified: 03-09-2020 12:46 PM by The Cutter of Bish.)
03-09-2020 12:44 PM
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mturn017 Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
(03-09-2020 12:31 PM)DawgNBama Wrote:  Those fees differ from state to state. The state of Virginia is ridiculous with their student fees, I've noticed.

Because that is the sole source of institutional income available to Virginia schools. Does it matter to the student if in VA you pay a fee and some portion of it will be allocated to athletics as opposed to being assessed a smaller fee but we're also going to allocate some of your tuition to athletics as well therefore making it a driver for tuition increases? There are also requirements for what must be included in athletic department budgets that make them look bigger than other states. If you think JMU has a an athletic budget higher than many AAC teams in apples to apples terms then I've got a bridge in Harrisonburg to sell you. Here's the "fine print" the young lady at JMU was so surprised to learn about as well:

https://www.jmu.edu/ubo/rates-breakdown.shtml

It's required to be posted at all VA public institutions. Her bill no doubt said "comprehensive fee", it's in the schools discretion how it gets used.
03-09-2020 12:44 PM
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
(03-09-2020 12:44 PM)The Cutter of Bish Wrote:  
(03-09-2020 11:00 AM)Wedge Wrote:  If an athletic department wants or needs more money, its first stops ought to be donations, sponsorships and ticket sales. (Real ticket sales, of course, not using university or student money to buy tickets.) Student fees should be used only in very limited amounts and only after maximum effort has been expended in those other areas. Looks like many athletic departments are taking way too much student money while not trying very hard to raise money in the ways they should.

Or...why are you fielding D1 athletics? You can't afford it.

Advancement and donations in higher ed is such an intra-institutional competition. I don't know how anyone can do it for very long for a living. And that's heightened when you have major athletics, because the school is attempting to attract money from the same sample population, but pitting employees against each other on how it is to be used.

I think schools would call this a "competing project." It's just a game to see which department can score the cash.

And, really, I'm not surprised athletics aren't good at this. Because athletics should be about sports. Not raising donations. But, schools decentralized their advancement and relations offices so individual units could chase specific people for specific projects. I don't think it's working...this list of who's throwing it back onto the students worse being quite the piece of evidence that it is.

Most schools have an athletic foundation that does the fundraising for them not school administrators.
03-09-2020 12:46 PM
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ChrisLords Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
(03-09-2020 12:31 PM)DawgNBama Wrote:  Those fees differ from state to state. The state of Virginia is ridiculous with their student fees, I've noticed.

Athletics fees got so bad, that the state had to pass a law that limits athletics fees to a percentage of athletics budget. Looking at the top 10, there are a lot of schools out of compliance. I guess nothing is being done to enforce the law.

Virginia Military Institute $3,340
Citadel Military College of South Carolina $2,713
James Madison University $2,340
Longwood University $2,012
College of William and Mary $1,900
Old Dominion University $1,678
Norfolk State University $1,538
College of Charleston $1,278
Winthrop University $1,225
Radford University $1,180
03-09-2020 12:51 PM
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The Cutter of Bish Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
(03-09-2020 12:46 PM)mturn017 Wrote:  
(03-09-2020 12:44 PM)The Cutter of Bish Wrote:  
(03-09-2020 11:00 AM)Wedge Wrote:  If an athletic department wants or needs more money, its first stops ought to be donations, sponsorships and ticket sales. (Real ticket sales, of course, not using university or student money to buy tickets.) Student fees should be used only in very limited amounts and only after maximum effort has been expended in those other areas. Looks like many athletic departments are taking way too much student money while not trying very hard to raise money in the ways they should.

Or...why are you fielding D1 athletics? You can't afford it.

Advancement and donations in higher ed is such an intra-institutional competition. I don't know how anyone can do it for very long for a living. And that's heightened when you have major athletics, because the school is attempting to attract money from the same sample population, but pitting employees against each other on how it is to be used.

I think schools would call this a "competing project." It's just a game to see which department can score the cash.

And, really, I'm not surprised athletics aren't good at this. Because athletics should be about sports. Not raising donations. But, schools decentralized their advancement and relations offices so individual units could chase specific people for specific projects. I don't think it's working...this list of who's throwing it back onto the students worse being quite the piece of evidence that it is.

Most schools have an athletic foundation that does the fundraising for them not school administrators.

Yeah, I revised my post to include this, because you have some schools who have successful foundations who do this work for them.

But, it's not like school administrators aren't in their game. Coaches, AD's, and presidents still have to do the wine and dine and wine and cheese like the other groups. That whole "building relationships" **** that isn't quantifiable that is also very much a part of their jobs.
03-09-2020 12:53 PM
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mturn017 Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
(03-09-2020 12:53 PM)The Cutter of Bish Wrote:  
(03-09-2020 12:46 PM)mturn017 Wrote:  
(03-09-2020 12:44 PM)The Cutter of Bish Wrote:  
(03-09-2020 11:00 AM)Wedge Wrote:  If an athletic department wants or needs more money, its first stops ought to be donations, sponsorships and ticket sales. (Real ticket sales, of course, not using university or student money to buy tickets.) Student fees should be used only in very limited amounts and only after maximum effort has been expended in those other areas. Looks like many athletic departments are taking way too much student money while not trying very hard to raise money in the ways they should.

Or...why are you fielding D1 athletics? You can't afford it.

Advancement and donations in higher ed is such an intra-institutional competition. I don't know how anyone can do it for very long for a living. And that's heightened when you have major athletics, because the school is attempting to attract money from the same sample population, but pitting employees against each other on how it is to be used.

I think schools would call this a "competing project." It's just a game to see which department can score the cash.

And, really, I'm not surprised athletics aren't good at this. Because athletics should be about sports. Not raising donations. But, schools decentralized their advancement and relations offices so individual units could chase specific people for specific projects. I don't think it's working...this list of who's throwing it back onto the students worse being quite the piece of evidence that it is.

Most schools have an athletic foundation that does the fundraising for them not school administrators.

Yeah, I revised my post to include this, because you have some schools who have successful foundations who do this work for them.

But, it's not like school administrators aren't in their game. Coaches, AD's, and presidents still have to do the wine and dine and wine and cheese like the other groups. That whole "building relationships" **** that isn't quantifiable that is also very much a part of their jobs.


Of course they do, especially the big donors.
03-09-2020 12:57 PM
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mturn017 Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
(03-09-2020 12:51 PM)ChrisLords Wrote:  
(03-09-2020 12:31 PM)DawgNBama Wrote:  Those fees differ from state to state. The state of Virginia is ridiculous with their student fees, I've noticed.

Athletics fees got so bad, that the state had to pass a law that limits athletics fees to a percentage of athletics budget. Looking at the top 10, there are a lot of schools out of compliance. I guess nothing is being done to enforce the law.

Virginia Military Institute $3,340
Citadel Military College of South Carolina $2,713
James Madison University $2,340
Longwood University $2,012
College of William and Mary $1,900
Old Dominion University $1,678
Norfolk State University $1,538
College of Charleston $1,278
Winthrop University $1,225
Radford University $1,180


Haven't read the law huh?

We're still charging less fees than VT even if we're allocating more to athletics.
03-09-2020 01:07 PM
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The Cutter of Bish Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
(03-09-2020 12:57 PM)mturn017 Wrote:  Of course they do, especially the big donors.

Right, and I find that lends to trouble. You have designated groups doing this collecting, but also reliant upon leaders doing it with them, competing with themselves, really.
03-09-2020 01:21 PM
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Frank the Tank Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
(03-09-2020 10:46 AM)quo vadis Wrote:  
(03-09-2020 10:38 AM)The Cutter of Bish Wrote:  "It helps attract and retain students," is usually the college response.

Thing is though, it really doesn't, at least not (ironically) for the schools that seem to soak their students the most. There was a study published last year that showed that truly elite performance in the major sports - like winning a BCS bowl game or making the final AP top 10, or making the Final 4 in men's hoops, did cause a non-trivial increase in student enrollment, which faded out after about 3 years.

IOW's, it really is a "Flutie Effect", you need to win a major bowl like the 1985 Cotton Bowl, and have the Heisman Trophy winner, to get the effect.

All other achievements, even in women's hoops and baseball, had zero impact. And of course 99% of all the schools soaking their students with athletic fees never attain the kind of success needed to gain these benefits.

The simple answer is that there are humans involved here and, at the end of the day, administrators that would dare downsize or eliminate an athletic department have more to lose *personally* than administrators that keep them going. (See UAB football.)

I'd compare it to pro sports stadiums. Every economic study under the sun shows that municipalities are on the losing end of public funding of pro sports stadiums.

So, why do governors and mayors still sign onto pro sports stadium deals? It's because despite all of the taxpayer watchdog group warnings, the simple fact of the matter is that governors and mayors have a history of getting voted *out* of office if they lose a pro sports team, whereas they get hailed as heroes when they get a pro sports team. Public opinion polls might even state that a majority of the people don't want to have public subsidies for pro sports stadiums. However, when a pro sports team actually carries out an act of leaving for another location, the politicians get hammered by the voters much more than if they had signed onto a new stadium deal.

Ultimately, "we" the public (and I mean the royal "we" as opposed to this board in particular) are to blame for this because we all talk both sides of our mouths on this issue (myself included). We claim that we don't want overspending on sports, whether college or pro... yet our TV viewing habits and actions support the notion that spectator sports are actually more valuable than ever. We claim that we don't want public funding for a pro sports stadium, but when our favorite team leaves for another city, we then blame the mayor. We claim that we won't want money-losing college teams, but when a school like UAB takes action to eliminate football, it becomes such a massive political mushroom cloud that they completely backtracked.

Long story short: most university presidents are only going to be at their particular jobs for a few years before moving somewhere else, so he/she doesn't want that reputation of being the person that killed Division I sports at a school. That's a scarlet letter that doesn't ever leave a resume. In contrast, it's FAR easier for those university presidents to simply tack on an additional athletic fee to student bills. There's no contest there. It looks a heck of a lot better on a resume for better jobs when university presidents figure out ways to *save* athletic departments (even if it's superficial via more student fees) as opposed to killing them.
03-09-2020 01:29 PM
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nachoman91 Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
(03-09-2020 10:30 AM)quo vadis Wrote:  ....bury those fees in fine print or on websites because they know they are morally wrong. They are soaking regular students to pay for athletes, and money losing athletic programs that stroke admin and high-roller alumni egos.

Doesn't an athletic program act as advertising for a University? I would venture to guess that a successful athletic program actually draws in students....i.e. that schools enrollment numbers increase directly because of the athletic program. So those fees could be considered nothing more than additional advertising money.
03-09-2020 01:29 PM
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mturn017 Offline
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RE: Hidden Figures: Athletics Fees
(03-09-2020 01:21 PM)The Cutter of Bish Wrote:  
(03-09-2020 12:57 PM)mturn017 Wrote:  Of course they do, especially the big donors.

Right, and I find that lends to trouble. You have designated groups doing this collecting, but also reliant upon leaders doing it with them, competing with themselves, really.

Well, the AD and football coach typically aren't out trying to raise money for a new science building so other than the President I don't think there's a lot of crossover. And everyone has their lists. So and so supports the arts. This guy is an alum of the business school that's really done well. Same is true for athletics. Would they give more to the school of business if there were no athletics or would they not give at all? The world may never know.
03-09-2020 01:43 PM
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