OT: Nick Saban correlated with $70 million increase in U of Alabama revenue

Submitted by Tha Stunna on May 14th, 2013 at 4:07 PM


An interesting read about revenue changes at Alabama corrrelated with Nick Saban becoming the coach.  Athletic department revenue went up by 11.7 million.  Tuition revenue increased by 58 million (mostly from increases in tuition and enrollment from out of state students).  Nick Saban only costs 5.3 million (in money).  Selling your soul in the name of football can, in fact, pay well. 

The Michigan-relevant takeaway would be that a successful athletic program generates a lot of income for the school.  That conclusion is obvious, but seeing it in print is nice.  It's also nice to have a retort for your friend who is convinced that schools waste money on football.

US News rankings for rough perspective: Michigan 29, Rutgers 68, Michigan State 72, Delaware 75, Alabama 77.  The student in the article, who is from Long Island, cares more about Alabama and Delaware than Rutgers; read into that what you will.




May 14th, 2013 at 4:19 PM ^

and no one gave a damn about college football.  It was all about the professional teams over in NYC. 

It's only recently when they've started to play well have people started to care.  It'll take some time but the Rutgers fan base is expanding. 


May 14th, 2013 at 4:46 PM ^

Good for Alabama and Saban. Michigan is/was in a very differnt place in terms of its pool of students and academics.  There is no shortage of OOS students looking for admission to Michigan, even with OOS tuition at about the highest level of any public U.  

In terms of value of the program, Michigan is #2 per Forbes, second only to Texas.


Regardless, winning programs definitely help. I would bet that our Final Four appearance helps  in significant ways to enahnce the brand as do 11-2/BCS football seasons.


May 14th, 2013 at 5:16 PM ^

If you use the data in the USA Today database, the jumps in revenue for Alabama's athletic department are rather substantial. Overall, from the final year of Shula and through the first five years of Saban, there was 45.6% increase, with two years of decreases but three years of 20%-plus growth in department revenue. 

Interestingly, scholarship expenses are up 44.16% in that same period, and money spent on coaching staff is up 45.18% too. Profit from rights and licensing is up 53.97% since Saban as well.


May 14th, 2013 at 5:30 PM ^

is pretty near the top of its ceiling, whereas i suspect alabama has seen a rapid increase like they never have before and they will likely dropoff off slowly after saban's time.


snarling wolverine

May 14th, 2013 at 5:56 PM ^


Tuition revenue increased by 58 million (mostly from increases in tuition and enrollment from out of state students).

But the part in bold had nothing to do with Saban (I assume), so that's kind of misleading.  Tuition revenue is up everywhere - every school keeps jacking it up.  


Tha Stunna

May 14th, 2013 at 6:18 PM ^

Well, if you have more qualified students interested in your school than you can accept, raising tuition is quite doable.  If you are currently accepting the maximum number of out of state students that are qualified, raising tuition will drive some of them away.  I don't consider it 100% causality, but there's an effect there.

In other words, raising tuition tends to decrease enrollment in a vacuum; getting more students to pay more tuition is due to some outside factor (possibly named Nick Saban).


May 14th, 2013 at 7:19 PM ^

How much of that have they spent on the players' salaries during his tenure?  Need a fair profitability measure for a true analysis.