Arguably the two premier brands in college basketball and football illustrate the financial disparity in college sports. The Kentucky Wildcats, maybe the best brand in college basketball, just signed John Calipari to a 7 year, $52.5 million dollar deal. That’s some real walking around money. The Alabama Crimson Tide just signed Nick Saban (Lane Kiffin’s boss) to a deal through 2022 for $55.2 million.
Right now, Bearcats athletic dollars just don’t add up. In 2013, the Bearcats total revenue (for all of its programs) was $61.9 million, while its expenses were $59.5 million. By way of contrast, Alabama was “rolling” in the dough with $143.7 million in revenue, while its expenses were $116.6 million. More interesting factoids can be found on the USA Today’s chart.
In other words, if we want the Bearcats to sneak into one of the power conferences, the donor base is going to have to pony up ‘Bama dollars. By the way, have you ever driven through Alabama? It’s not the most affluent state in the union.