Dick Harmon: Are we spending too much money on college football?
At Boise State, football player expenditures went from $54,972 in 2005 to $172,415 — a 214 percent increase. BSU spent $7,764 on regular students in 2005 and increased that 18 percent to $9,134 in 2011.
In the argument crosshairs, this is a lot of money to spend on fun and games. But it’s also an investment in activities that brings millions of dollars to universities and generates tremendous pride to the communities where they are located. Without college football, this money does not filter through hands of many (parking, concessions, lodging, travel, food, etc.). It's a big business woven into the fabric of our society.
From College Station, Texas, to Oxford, Miss., from Laramie, Wyo., to Lincoln, Neb., this is a singing genie nobody can put back in the bottle.
Other general findings by the commission?
The increase of coaching salaries has been a big factor in athletic spending growth rates. Among the five conferences with the largest athletics budgets, median coaching salaries increased as much as 54 percent in inflation-adjusted terms from 2005 to 2011, compared to 24 percent for all FBS schools.
"The median football spending per scholarship football player at all FBS institutions is expected to rise from $138,424 in 2011 to $212,303 in 2020, based on prior growth rates and controlling for inflation. By comparison, in the top FBS spending quartile, the 2011 median spending level of $243,900 per scholarship football player is estimated to increase to nearly $400,000 in 2020," according to a press release on the report.
Yes, I confessed to Ms. Burns.
But it is a crazy arrangement that is feeding on itself.
Nobody is going to unhook the IV.
Dick Harmon, Deseret News sports columnist, can be found on Twitter as Harmonwrites and can be contacted at email@example.com.
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