Big money headed to Big 12, SEC schools thanks to giant revenue distribution

05/30/2014 11:38 AM

06/03/2014 2:23 PM

The Big 12 and Southeastern Conference announced revenue distribution figures Friday that will top $20 million at most schools for 2013-14.

And more is on the way in both leagues.

Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby said he expects each of his 10 members to receive $3 million more next year mainly because of the College Football Playoff, and by the time current TV deals with Fox and ESPN run their course in 2025, the per-school distribution will double.

“Our distribution revenue in the coming years will climb to $40 million per school,” Bowlsby said at the conclusion of Big 12 meetings Friday in Irving, Texas.

The Big 12 will distribute about $213 million to its 10 schools. Eight will receive $23 million each. West Virginia and TCU, which just completed their second year in the league, will get about $14 million as part of a phase-in plan.

The SEC will distribute a record $309.6 million in revenue to its 14 member institutions.

The average amount received by each school, excluding $16.8 million of bowl revenue, was $20.9 million.

Missouri received its largest Big 12 payout in 2011, when it earned $12.8 million. In 2009, Kansas topped the Big 12 in conference-generated revenue at $12.1 million.

The realignment era of college sports, which started in 2010 and has concluded — at least at the highest level for the moment — produced whopping media deals that financially separated the Big 12, SEC, Pac-12, Big Ten and ACC from others in college sports.

Among the reasons those power five conferences are seeking autonomy in governance is more freedom in spending the income that has grown so quickly in a few years.

The revenue is generated largely by television contracts, bowl games and NCAA Tournament income, and the total amount in each conference is setting records.

The SEC’s revenue figures to grow at a rapid rate. The SEC Network launches in August and, according to Sports Business Journal, carriers in the conference’s 11-state footprint will be expected to pay $1.30 per month per subscription.

If that happens, with some 30 million subscribers in the footprint, the network could generate about $450 million with much of that returned to the schools.

But the SEC isn’t there yet. The network, run by ESPN, has reached deals with satellite TV company Dish Network along with cable providers AT&T U-verse, Google Fiber and NRTC, but Time Warner Cable, Comcast, Cox Cable, DirectTV and others haven’t signed on.

“We remain optimistic that, at some point in time, we’ll have full distribution,” SEC commissioner Mike Slive said at the league meetings this week in Destin, Fla. “It’s my hope that the programming will be so significant that everybody will want to carry it.”

Comparable programming — a football game, some basketball games and plenty of nonrevenue sports — is offered in the Big 12 through the schools’ third-tier networks.

At Kansas, it’s the Jayhawk Network and it’s worth about $6 million annually to KU. At Kansas State, it’s KStateHD.TV and brings the Wildcats about $3 million. The Longhorn Network at Texas is worth about $15 million annually.

To reach Blair Kerkhoff, call 816-234-4730 or send email to bkerkhoff@kcstar.com. Follow him at twitter.com/BlairKerkhoff.

REVENUE DISTRIBUTION

(For 2013-14) All figures in millions

Big 12 SEC

Per school $23* $20.9

Total $213 $292.8

*All schools except TCU and West Virgina, which will get $14 million

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