Thu. Feb 22nd, 2024

Angle down icon An icon in the shape of an angle pointing down. The Ohio State University and the University of Oklahoma spend the most on their college sports teams. Mitchell Layton/Getty Images; Ian Johnson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images College sports make big money, but some schools earn a lot more than others.That money is typically pumped back into the programs in pursuit of championships and TV ratings.Due in large part to football, there is a huge economic divide between men’s and women’s teams.

When it comes to college sports, there is a huge divide between the haves and the have-nots, and the former get to spend a lot more on their teams.

Previously, we looked at the 23 schools with the highest college sports revenues. Below, we look at the schools that spend the most and how that money is allocated.

We used data made available by the US Department of Education and calculated the average total expenses for athletic programs over the three most recent years available, 2020 through 2022. Major costs include operating expenses, such as hosting a sporting event, salaries for coaches and support staff, recruiting, and facility improvements.

The most expensive program on campus is typically the football team, where schools make a lot of money off TV contracts and pump a lot of back into coaches and facilities, hoping to lure the top players. As a result, there is a huge economic divide between the men’s and women’s sports teams.

Of the 22 schools listed below, the average school spends $142 million on their sports teams. Nearly half, or about $65 million, is spent on men’s teams, almost three times the $23 million on women’s teams. The rest goes to non-gender-specific operating costs, facilities, and the occasional co-ed athletics team.

22. University of California, Los Angeles

UCLA football coach Chip Kelly. Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Conference: Pac-12 (Will join Big Ten in 2024)

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $120 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $120 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $53 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $23 million

21. Clemson University

Dabo Swinney walks onto the field with Clemson players. Icon Sportswire/Getty Images

Conference: ACC

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $124 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $124 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $67 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $17 million

20. University of Wisconsin

Wisconsin Badgers Athletic Director Chris McIntosh. John Fisher/Getty Images

Conference: Big Ten

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $130 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $124 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $49 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $23 million

19. Florida State University

Florida State head coach Mike Norvell. Icon Sportswire/Getty Images

Conference: ACC

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $134 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $127 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $67 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $18 million

18. University of Arkansas

Fan of the Arkansas Razorbacks. Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

Conference: SEC

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $137 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $128 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $64 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $22 million

17. University of Louisville

Louisville Cardinals head coach Kenny Payne. Nicholas Faulkner/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Conference: ACC

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $130 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $129 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $56 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $20 million

16. University of Georgia

Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

Conference: SEC

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $184 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $134 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $67 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $20 million

15. University of Kentucky

University of Kentucky Wildcats. Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Conference: SEC

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $135 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $135 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $60 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $19 million

14. Auburn University

Independence, the Auburn University eagle mascot. Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire/Getty Images

Conference: SEC

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $152 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $135 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $73 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $24 million

13. University of Tennessee

Head coach Rick Barnes of the Tennessee Volunteers. Eakin Howard/Getty Images

Conference: SEC

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $140 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $136 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $58 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $21 million

12. University of South Carolina

South Carolina marching band. Bill Frakes/Getty Images

Conference: SEC

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $139 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $137 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $57 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $22 million

11. Texas A&M University

Texas A&M’s Kyle Field. Replay Photos/Getty Images

Conference: SEC

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $150 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $139 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $66 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $25 million

10. Stanford University

Stanford Cardinal women’s basketball head coach Tara VanDerveer Bob Kupbens/Icon Sportswire

Conference: Pac-12 (Will join ACC in 2024)

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $139 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $139 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $51 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $31 million

9. University of Southern California

Miller Moss of the USC Trojans. Brandon Sloter/Getty Images

Conference: SEC

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $146 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $146 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $63 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $21 million

8. University of Florida

Florida Gators cheerleaders. James Gilbert/Getty Images

Conference: SEC

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $147 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $147 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $61 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $22 million

7. University of Notre Dame

Notre Dame Fighting Irish head coach Marcus Freeman. Brandon Sloter/Getty Images

Conference: ACC (independent in football)

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $170 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $150 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $78 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $23 million

6. Louisiana State University

LSU Football Fans. John Korduner/Icon Sportswire

Conference: SEC

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $158 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $154 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $64 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $23 million

5. University of Michigan

Head coach Juwan Howard of the Michigan Wolverines and Will Tschetter. Luke Hales/Getty Images

Conference: Big Ten

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $170 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $155 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $73 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $28 million

4. University of Alabama

New Alabama Crimson Tide head football coach Kalen Deboer. Brandon SumrallGetty Images

Conference: SEC

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $180 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $157 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $82 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $22 million

3. University of Texas

Texas Longhorns mascot, Bevo. Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Conference: Big 12 (will join the SEC in 2024)

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $191 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $164 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $70 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $23 million

2. University of Oklahoma

Oklahoma Sooners celebrate 2023 NCAA softball championship. Tyler Schank/Getty Images

Conference: Big 12 (will join the SEC in 2024)

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $167 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $165 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $69 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $26 million

1. The Ohio State University

Mascot Brutus and the Ohio State Buckeyes football team. Icon Sportswire

Conference: Big Ten

Average Annual Athletics Revenue: $204 million

Average Annual Athletics Expenses: $180 million

Average Expenses for all Men’s Teams: $86 million

Average Expenses for all Women’s Teams: $28 million

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