UConn reports athletic deficit increase to $43.5 million

PAT EATON-ROBB
·2 min read

STORRS, Conn. (AP) — The deficit in the University of Connecticut's athletic department rose by $1.2 million during the last fiscal year to $43.5 million, according to the school's annual report to the NCAA.

UConn released the fiscal report on Wednesday. It said the gap, which last year was among the highest in Division I, was covered by $37 million in direct support from the university and $6.5 million in student fees.

Revenue from men's basketball fell from $6 million to $5 million, women’s basketball revenue dropped from $4.5 million to $4 million, and football revenue fell from $3.3 million to $2.3 million.

The report covers the period of July 1, 2019 to June 30 2020, which means it does not include losses from the cancellation of this year's football season or the refund of basketball tickets sold before the state banned crowds from those games.

It also doesn't include projected savings from the announced elimination of four sports — men's cross country, men’s swimming and diving, men’s tennis, and women’s rowing — which will take effect at the end of the current academic year.

“By making the difficult decision to reduce sports and decreasing operating expenses in necessary ways, the department is on track to reduce its subsidy to a level more in line with its peers,” the school said in a statement.

The report also does not include any payment made toward UConn's $17 million fee to exit the American Athletic Conference, nor about $26.4 million in donations and pledges secured last year after the school announced it was rejoining the Big East Conference.

“Our return this year to the Big East will also play a positive role in our long-term fiscal future, particularly once college athletics can once again welcome fans to games after the pandemic and UConn can offer full schedules of competitive matchups against our historical rivals and others,” the school said in a statement.

UConn said in June that it wants to reduce its athletic deficit by about $10 million a year, cutting the need for a subsidy to the Division of Athletics by 25% over the next three years.

There were some pandemic losses reflected in the report, including the loss of revenue from postseason basketball tournaments. The school received just under $707,000 from the men’s and women’s NCAA tournaments in 2019 but received no revenue after those events were cancelled last spring.

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