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Syracuse Athletics Has Second-Highest Profit Margin in the ACC

Ever wonder how much your $7.50 Dome beer helps the profit of your beloved Syracuse Orange? Here is your answer.

Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

We all know college athletics are about money. So it should be no surprise looking at the USA Today financial report on division 1 programs in the NCAA for the 2014-2015 year and seeing massive revenues reported for Universities. The top revenue earner? Texas A&M at a whopping $192,608,876. Each of the top 25 universities within the database generated over $100,000,000 in revenue for the year, and it got me wondering: how much revenue does Syracuse Athletics generate in a given year?

While this data isn't made available in a place like the USA Today database, we can still get reported numbers from various public data available. The U.S. Department of Education office of postsecondary education offers an "Equity in Athletics Data Analysis Cutting Tool", which is a long way of saying that it's a database that shows the money spent and earned on men's sports versus women's sports within a university. These numbers not only show the comparison of money spent and earned for men's programs versus women's programs, but also finances as a whole for the sports as well.

Varsity Teams Men's Teams Women's Teams Total
Basketball $13,344,977 $4,355,737 $17,700,714
Football $19,809,300 $19,809,300
Total Expenses of all Sports, Except Football and Basketball, Combined $4,613,417 $9,174,985 $13,788,402
Total Expenses of Men's and Women's Teams $75,844,818 $10,318,749 $86,163,567
Not Allocated by Gender/Sport $1,012,194
Grand Total Expenses $87,175,761

These numbers show that from July 1, 2014 until June 30, 2015, Syracuse University generated $87,175,761 in total revenue from it's athletic department. In comparison to public universities, Syracuse would rank 35th in the NCAA, right behind the likes of West Virginia, North Carolina, Indiana, and Mississippi.

In the same database, Syracuse is listed as spending $67,391,194 in expenses related to the teams during the time reported. This nets the University a gain of $19,784,567, which is a higher profit margin than nine of the top ten revenue generating public universities in the NCAA.

Here are the ACC rankings for total revenue and profit:

Team Revenue Expenses Profit
Notre Dame $121,260,381 $100,035,458 $21,224,923
Florida State $120,822,522 $111,386,681 $9,435,841
Louisville $104,325,207 $101,624,437 $2,700,770
Duke $91,688,202 $91,174,723 $513,479
Virginia $91,256,772 $91,345,925 -$89,153
North Carolina $89,128,256 $89,080,843 $47,413
Syracuse $87,175,761 $67,391,194 $19,784,567
Clemson $83,534,371 $82,855,674 $678,697
Virginia Tech $80,230,095 $77,679,721 $2,550,374
Miami $77,724,833 $76,495,820 $1,229,013
Georgia Tech $77,202,758 $74,979,077 $2,223,681
NC State $76,834,603 $73,074,396 $3,760,207
Boston College $69,300,736 $69,300,736 $0
Wake Forest $58,672,116 $57,865,117 $806,999

It's no surprise that Notre Dame leads the pack in revenue and profit. But Virginia and Boston College's reported numbers are mind boggling. Zero profit for Boston College. ZERO. With even less than that going to Virginia.

Nonetheless, this data shows that the Syracuse athletic department is extremely healthy, and that they probably have the money to replace your cushion seat in the bleachers for your season ticket in the Dome.