Athletics bails out academics

SEC athletic department budgets are impressive, and I’m sure you’ve heard random academic types complain about it. However, all those academics who complain about the big salaries need to shut up. The University of Florida’s athletic fund is being asked to provide $6 million to the help the university deal with a shortfall. The Orlando Sentinel reports, “UF faces potential layoffs and the elimination of some academic programs in order to absorb a $30 to $90 million slash based on the Senate and the House’s versions of the budget.”

According to the report, Florida’s athletic fund has provided almost $50 million in funds to the university since 1990. That is a strong track record of helping out academics.

From the perspective of Alabama athletics, the University has raided the football fund for big projects in the past. In fact, all those anti-Alabama people at UAB should be thankful to Alabama football—it was football money that procured dorms for medical students at the medical college in 1945.

“Through the influence of Dr. Raymond Paty, president of the University, the school’s big athletic fund, built from football profits and kept inviolate for years, was tapped for three hundred and fifty thousand dollars to buy dormitories for students at the medical college. It marked the first time that anyone had dared dig into the big fund for other than sports purposes.” (Irving Beiman, 1947)

History shows that athletics contributes substantially to academics. Why is it that all we hear from academics are complaints about big salaries?

You can read more about SEC budgets on our SEC athletic department budget page.