by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Jenna Robinson of the Martin Center devotes her latest column to university spending on athletics.
As March Madness hits and the public’s attention is on college basketball’s NCAA Tournament, few spectators know just how much the public subsidizes college sports.
Within the University of North Carolina system, funding can range from $8 million at UNC-Asheville to an eye-popping $96 million at UNC-Chapel Hill. Revenue from broadcast agreements, ticket sales, and corporate sponsorships can lessen the blow, but institutional support and student fees still form the backbone of most athletic departments. In total, the UNC system spent nearly $400 million for Division I athletics in 2017.
The following table shows just how much each UNC system school spent on all athletics programs in 2017—and where the money comes from. The data are self-reported by institutions on NCAA financial reports and on reports required by the federal government. The data were assembled by the Knight Commission for Division I teams only. (Data for lower division schools are less accessible and not reported here.)