Academic higher-ups at the University of Oregon are raising questions about the school’s football budget. The Ducks do generate quite a bit of revenue, and some would like to see some of it put more towards academics instead of athletics.
Speaking to Diane Dietz of The Register-Guard, a professor and former dean offered more.
“Our administration needs to take more responsibility to fully exploit the opportunity that our athletic department provides — on behalf of our students, our faculty and our institution,”former business school dean Dennis Howard said, per The Register-Guard.
“They have $98 million in revenue and, strangely, exactly $98 million in expenses. If you look back year after year, you will find that revenue and expenses match up almost to a penny. … When they get extra TV revenue, they do what they just did in February. They go to the president and the Board of Trustees and the coaches and the athletic director get raises, so expenses go up.”
“It would be really good if we were all in this together and the athletic department was trying to help the rest of the university,”Oregon economics professor Bill Harbaugh added.
It’s certainly hard to argue Howard and Harbaugh’s logic, as a growing trend in the college world today is that academics often take a back seat to the athletic department’s needs.
Recently, LSU decided to spend $85 million on a lazy river and pool deck, among other things, even though the university is having major budget problems. Despite that, the project is underway as a means of luring recruits and faculty rather than putting money into academics and trying to rebuild itself as a good school that just happens to have a solid athletics program.
Given that a university has finally said something about the ridiculousness regarding the money that athletic departments make, perhaps things will slowly start to change in the near future.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports