Athletics’ Funding


• The Athletic Department does not contribute any money to the University
• The University has contributed $13 million to the Athletic Dept. over the past decade
• UIUC students have to pay a mandatory athletic fee to the Athletic Department
• UIUC students have to pay a mandatory fee to upgrade the basketball stadium

As  the Athletic Department gets more and more revenue …

conf-ncaa income2

It spends more and more on salaries.  Total salary spending has increased 89% over the past decade.

total athletic salary2

(source of data: UIUC annual reports to the NCAA)

Of the top 10 highest paid employees at UIUC, SIX were from athletics (images and totals from 2015).

highest paid_horiz

The Athletic Department continues to add more and more sources of revenue, such as the new “six-figure benefit*” for an official beer sponsorship, beginning Sept. of 2014.  None of the that revenue goes to the university.
beer sign
* contract is not subject to the Illinois Freedom of Information Act.  Five years ago at the Univ. of Wisconsin, a similar sponsorship brought in $425,000 per year

Read the Chicago Tribune‘s article from 2011 about the free tuition waivers given to the athletic department by the university.  These waivers continue today, costing the university $700,000 in 2014-15.

From the Tribune article:

“The University of Illinois in June announced a massive fundraising campaign for financial aid assistance, its latest effort to help struggling students pay for college.

But a potential source of money remains committed to the university division so flush it basically operates independently: the athletics department, which has a $75 million operating budget.”