Blog Entry

Hey Big East: UCF leads C-USA in revenue

Posted on: April 26, 2011 1:19 pm
Posted by Jerry Hinnen

UCF has sworn they'll be part of of a BCS conference one day, a day that could come sooner rather than later if the Big East and Villanova can't get on the same page (and the alleged backroom efforts of USF to keep the Knights outside the league fall on deaf ears). But whatever argument the Knights might like to use, there's one that's always talked louder than any others: money.

And fortunately for the Knights, they've got it, as contributor Kristi Dosh illustrates in this report on the 2009-2010 financial picture in C onference USA. UCF leads the way in the conference with more than $15 million in football revenue, a number greater than several BCS schools and two Big East programs--UConn and Cincinnati.

Dosh points out that UCF's football profit wasn't necessarily a result of overwhelming fan interest so much as UCF's simple overwhelming size; at 56,000 students, UCF is the second-largest school in the country, and all those student fees and alumni donations add up. The Knights also boosted their bottom line by not immediately re-investing all their grosses back into the program, as the school's football spending (at approximately $8.5 million) lags in the middle of the conference.

But if anything, those details probably only emphasize why the Big East might take an interest. If the Knights can turn such a substantial profit even without a horde of ticket sales, what happens when interest both on- and off-campus receives the kind of spike that comes with BCS competition? If UCF's athletic department can turn out a C-USA champion and BCS top-25 team even while keeping their spending relatively in check, how good could they be with the budget boost that comes with a distribution check from a BCS league?

The Big East may still let some other conference find that out, of course. Adding UCF means adding yet another basketball team to an already over-swollen 18-team (hoops-centric) conference, and unless Villanova joins up as well, it still wouldn't give the conference the necessary 12 for a lucrative championship game. There's a reason the conference is taking its time in expanding beyond its TCU addition.

But there's also little doubt UCF's friendly bottom line will give the league's decision-makers some food for thought.

One other note on Dosh's report: it would be tempting to look at SMU's conference-leading spending and assume that explains their quantum leap forward under June Jones and C-USA division championship last year. But the next two schools on that list -- Rice and Memphis --suggest that it's not as easy as simply throwing money at the problem.


Since: May 15, 2011
Posted on: June 12, 2011 9:41 am

Hey Big East: UCF leads C-USA in revenue

you all lead it because of donations and fees. so what if some students go to other schools instead of ucf then donars stop donating. you have nothing left but fan base and for ya'll thats not a good saftey net. in the 2010 season you got about $792280.

Since: Dec 25, 2006
Posted on: April 28, 2011 4:26 pm

Hey Big East: UCF leads C-USA in revenue

usfbucbotray20 you are correct in every league has a few puchovers.  If USF was still in CUSA, they would be dominant, but I don't know if they would have won every year.  Also, I know the Big East would be a move up and they are a  lot tougher, overall, than CUSA.  The good thing about that is when one plays better competition they tend to get better.
Whether we like eachother or not, both schools have a lot to offer and the potential to rank in the Top 25, year in and year out. 
As a kid, I lived in Tampa for a summer when I was 15 years old and I like it as much, if not, more than Orlando.  I think each team has some fans who need to tone it down.  I say that knowing that I once was a youngster and how difficult it was for me to tone it down.  Heck, sometimes as an older man I have trouble toning it down.
I hope Holtz and your AD can get with UCF and resume the rivalry.  Maybe, we can finally win one!!!

Since: Jan 26, 2011
Posted on: April 28, 2011 1:50 pm

Hey Big East: UCF leads C-USA in revenue

in unbiased honesty, while yes, top to bottom the Big east is tougher (despite Tulane beating RU @ RU during homecoming, in a dreafully close yet ugly game, during a dreadfully disappointing and underachieving year for RU), ECU and UCF aren't the only 2 "quality" programs out of C-USA... Tulsa is a respectable foe, and SMU was down because of the death-penalty they recieved, but are quickly doing and spending all they can to get that program back up asap, and last year they were a quality and formidable opponent...
houtson was "down" but usually fields a decent team... and S.Miss is usually "respectable" at least... not saying all those teams are "on par" with AQ teams, but they're at least respectable opponents to beat... to be fair to UCF... i'm just saying, let's not compare C-USA to the MAC or Sunbelt, they're at least close, and in the same neighborhood to what the MWV and WAC were (from top to bottom)... while there was no Boise or TCU as a clear dominator... aside from memphis, anyone else in their conference, including Tulane, UAB, Rice, Marshall, and UTEP (the other 5 in the bottom half) can at least hang w/, (and probably beat on most nights), the bottom 5 from the 2010 WAC, and the bottom 4 from the 2010 MWC...

again, not saying that the 4 i mentioned are "quality" wins... but they're certainly not "cupake" city wins either...

also to say USF probably would've won the C-USA every year since 2005, is a bit of an assumption, just because without getting into the big east, revenue would've still been lower, C-USA money, and who's to say recruiting would've ever picked up like it has...

again, i like both programs... and USF clearly has more "bragging" rights SINCE coming to the Big East the UCF does in C-USA, more quality games, wins, level of play, etc... but, UCF in Orlando "RIGHT NOW", i think is perfectly poised as reigning (and multiple) C-USA champions, on the up-and-up, to do the same kind of big things in the future, with the same upside as USF offered back "then" when they got invited over... 2010 UCF, as a program, overall, with all they have acheived to this point, and all they bring to the table, is almost a mirror image of USF 2004, with where they're program was, and what they brough to the table... (except UCF won the conference title and cracked the top 25, all-beit, an easier version of the conference then it was before we raided 'em back then)... still when looking at the whole picture, the two are very similar programs, in very similar markets, with very similar obstacles and question marks to overcome, but with very similar upsides as well... USF got the nod 7 years ago, and is almost there now... i just think UCF deserves they're chance to do the same thing in their own respective market today...

Since: Sep 28, 2008
Posted on: April 28, 2011 9:23 am

Hey Big East: UCF leads C-USA in revenue

Squinty i agree that USF2011 needs to learn a thing or two but every team has a few pushovers every year they use as "tune up" games or schedule padders...including yourselves...but I do consider some of the conference opponents you play to be pushovers as well. Except for E Carolina and UCF what does the conference USA have to offer? I am not saying that its easy to win your conference but what i am saying is that if USF stayed...No one in that conference would be considered for an upgrade because USf would have probably won it every year since '05. Minus a slip up to ECU or UCF here or there we would be an undefeated or 1 loss team gauranteed. If we are so lucky to get you guys in the Big East you will quickly learn its not conference USA anymore but now you play with biger dogs.

Since: Dec 25, 2006
Posted on: April 27, 2011 7:51 pm

Hey Big East: UCF leads C-USA in revenue

" So the answer is, we don't want to play you because we'd rather leave room in our schedule to play teams that, if we beat, will help us move up in the rankings aka Miami and Notre Dame and not some no name team (UCF) which will do nothing for us in the rankings. "
I guess, USF2011, last year FAU, Western kentucky and Stoneybrook were some really tough teams that really enhanced your ranking.  Your problem was your former coach and some of you fans whose ego is as big as the Gulf of Mexico. 
I hate to say what you read like if I sound like an idiot.  We have great facilities, you rent yours (football & basketball).  I must say, Raymond James stadium is quite nice.  The point I was making was UCF has great facilities and, whether you care for any sport other than football, UCF has very good programs in multiple sports. 
The only good thing about not playing you in football is I do not have to be around so many idiots.
Speaking of the money in the BE being in basketball, last I looked our team beat yours.  Football is where the money is, but I will admit Big East basketball is big and the gap between football and basketball revenue is probably closest in that league.  After all they have close to 20 teams in Basketball.
I see you are new to CBS Sprotsline.  Welcome aboard.  Maybe you will get better and a little smarter given a little (lot) time.

Since: Sep 28, 2008
Posted on: April 27, 2011 4:41 pm

Hey Big East: UCF leads C-USA in revenue

I am a USF grad who continuosly hears all the BS that the bigeast isn't as strong as the other conferences yet we have had a BCS game champion 3 out of the last 6 years and the best bowl record since 1998 out of all conferences. The Big East is a contender andjust because we had a down down i mean we were all so evenly matched that it was impossible to win the conference without 2 or 3 loses. We want to make sure people see that this conference is serious...Thats why we took TCU because some may say they should have played in the last 2 national championship games. The big East is well know for playing that "florida style football" pressure by speed, this is why I consider this conference better than the ACC and at the cusp of reaching premium grade from the likes of the SEC.

UCF would be a great addition to the Big East. 1) The market size, revenue possibilities, & exposure for the Big East conference would increase 2 The instant classic every year between UCF and USF (which i garauntee will be sold out every year and be televised nationally) "The War on I4" will match the likes of the FSU/UF and FSU/UM games.
Now for UCF fan to say they are evenly matched or better is completely rediculous...just look at the resumes... USF has more top quality wins over ranked opponents and has dominated them in actual field of play...UCF had a few quaiity opponents (TEXAS, FL, MIAMI) but lost all. They did come close once during the best season they have ever had on the opening night of their brand new on campus stadium against top ranked Texas (yet USF went on to embarass them 67-12 a few weeks later). The USF game was the most important game to UCF fans every year i was at all four and can tell you this is true...your teams played up to the competition but on any given day UCF's teams did not match up with USF''s.  As far as the other sports are concerened. USF has a top tier track and field team, Soccer team that made it to the final four two years ago and is still tops in the state, baseball team that beat UCF this year, and basketball team that lost to UCF this year but beat UCF the season before and who's record is hampered by playing the top teams in the country on a weekly basis. USF is a bigger entity in the sports world because in the only game that really matters in America...FOOTBALL we have an advantage. UCF fan i respect you, and you will most definitely beat us at some point in time, on some field to be determined. Until then...You can never say you are better but you can say you can play with us.

I hope to see you all soon on the field. Go Bulls!

Since: Jan 26, 2011
Posted on: April 27, 2011 2:30 pm

Hey Big East: UCF leads C-USA in revenue

what's good for the goose, is good for the gander...
(and what's good for the gander, is also good for the goose in the long run, even if the goose can't always see it)...

UCF would be a GREAT add to the Big East as a whole... the only potential team that it wouldn't necessarily be good for is USF, because it's direct competetion, right down the road via i-4, for recruits and such... but, when it comes to "champions", they do better in the face of competetion, they step up, and shine, so even that could/should be great for USF football if they do have championship dreams...

1 more quality program, (even if not "top" quality, they are amongt the best available), brings the conf. 1 team closer to 12...

1 more quality program in Florida, is good for everyone...

when USF came up, i remember how everyone said, "they'll never be a real player in the florida market... Florida, FSU, Miami, they dominate that market, and USF will never step up to take any piece of it... Tampa is Gator country"... and at the time, it was true... but, look at 'em now... they may still be a bit behind the big 3 in terms of overall state market, but... being a full 2 hours away from UF in gainseville, who while controlling the state's market offers a very small immediate market of their own; and being a full 4 hours away from both Tallahassee AND Miami, in opposite ends of the state; with a major metropolitan area of their own (2nd largest in the state) surrounding the 3rd largest university in the state, they had the perfect grounds to build and create their own identity away from the others, and if you go to tampa today, it's certainly BULL COUNTRY now... and while they may not have taken over the Florida market, they certainly sliced out a nice piece of it because the immediate Tampa market now, belongs to the Bulls...
(though you'll still see the occasional FSU and UF jerseys around town)...

UCF is in the same situation, with the perfect grounds (like USF was) to carve out their own slice of the pie and create an identity all their own... while sure they're just an hour and a half away from Tampa, that's not an overlap "issue" if both teams are in the same conference... it's a double up extending the overall market area (with new major metros)... they are also 2 hours away from gainsville (who again have a a huge state/national following, but a smaller immediate market area to call their own)... they're also still 4 hours from both Tallahasse and Miami, (just like USF)... also, they too have their own major metropolis area to call their own, (3rd largest in state), with no other D1 programs in immediate/direct competetion for any sports to compete for said market, and they too have a MEGA student/alumni body as the largest university in the state... so again, any small overlap in the Tampa/Orlando markets would certainly benefit the conference more if they owned rights to both, 2 of the states 3 largest universities in control of 2 of the states 3 largest metropolitan areas = alot of Florida students and alumni paying more attention to the Big East as a conference, (esp. for that rivalry game being close)... the overall interest is increased statewide, and not to mention UCF already has decent and newer facilities in place (perfect foundation in place for upgrading with added revenue coming in), already has very solid turnouts to home games (despite not being in an AQ), and already has a decent foothold in their own respective orlando market, (despite not being an AQ)...

The Big East instantly becomes a MAJOR player for the Florida market as that interest increases...

now will UCF show up and instantly win the Big East... no, probably not, the schedule top to bottom is much tougher the C-USA every week... but will can they show up and instantly compete, play some quality football games even pulling the occasional upsets vs. the Rutgers, Uconn, Syracuse, Louisville, Cincy, and yes, even USF... DEFINITELY... if they can beat UGA in a bowl game, even though it wasn't the same tough UGA of years past, they're still a quality SEC opponent, they can DEFINITELY show up against ANY big east team and play a solid competetive game, possibly even pulling the upsets... (and that makes the entire conference as a whole stronger adding one more quality team able to compete... wins over them mean more for the victors, and wins by them legitimize them and the conference further, {unlike say 'nova would offer... wins over them would be meaningless, and wins by them would further deminish the conferences reputation as being weakest in the nation amongst the AQ's})...
+1 quality team +1 major market (w/ no immediate competitor) +a 2x major player in one of the richest football states
= good for the gander
(and the direct local competition for USF (mainly in recruiting), is good for them as well if they are up to the task of stepping up under pressure... (and wins in the h2h further bolster either's reputation in the state)...

USF made some strides in C-USA before the Big East invited them, and they have come even further since then, but i remember when everyone was questioning the move, claiming how bad it would be for the conference... yet look at them now and where they've come in the past 5 years, even flirting with the BCS bid and top 10 rankings...
-it appalls me that the USF fans would be the first ones to echo their own critics of just a few short years ago; shunning UCF, who's come along ways in C-USA the past few years, and is in the EXACT same position now, to do exactly the same thing as USF did then... USF fans hating on the idea of UCF joining the big east, and shunning the idea, disrespecting the program, need to take a long hard look in the mirror, and stop being hyppocrits... UCF now = USF then, and just as the Bulls got their shot to shine then, UCF, after all they HAVE done to this point, deserves their chance now... because they offer all the same tangibles that USF brought when they were invted to the table... and that greatly BENEFITS the Big East as a whole...

Since: Apr 27, 2011
Posted on: April 27, 2011 1:19 pm

Hey Big East: UCF leads C-USA in revenue

TCU Joined the Big East BTW!!!...Yikes

Since: Apr 27, 2011
Posted on: April 27, 2011 1:14 pm

Hey Big East: UCF leads C-USA in revenue

I'm so SICK of hearing UCF fans even compare themselves in football to USF.  Last season you won 11 games and the conference championship.  However, it's a terrible conference, the teams you "Won" against won a combined 27.2% of their own schedule (no team you beat last year had a winning season), and the teams you lost to only won 56% of their games.  So, how is it that you "have gone ahead" in football.  We have played, FSU, Oklahoma, Alabama, UF, Auburn, Kansas, Kansas State, Miami...etc etc. (and play Notre Dame, preseason rank of 17th and Miami this year) and beaten Miami, FSU, Auburn, Kansas (all ranked in the BCS top 25 year of win) etc. etc.  Who is your toughest opponent this year? BC? SoMiss?...We don't play you, not because we're "scared" but because there is no benefit for us to play you.  You play in a crap conference, have the weakest out of conference schedule known to man, and how you broke into the top 25 last year is beyond me.  So the answer is, we don't want to play you because we'd rather leave room in our schedule to play teams that, if we beat, will help us move up in the rankings aka Miami and Notre Dame and not some no name team (UCF) which will do nothing for us in the rankings.  Ohh and for snubbing you or putting our thumb over your NON EXISTANT bid to the BE doesn't make sense.  No one cares about track or in the BE is basketball, not football.  Do your research!  You sound like an idiot.  When UCF plays someone in their schedule that actually wins games or that is a household name and WINS those games, maybe a conference will take notice in your big, yet terrible athletic school!

Since: Apr 27, 2011
Posted on: April 27, 2011 10:53 am

Hey Big East: UCF leads C-USA in revenue

UCF's spending does not "lag" other C-USA programs.&nbs
p; Furthermore, it is a joke to say that UCF "boosted their bottom line by not immediately re-investing... back into the program".  The $8.5MM does not reflect the school's new football stadium on campus, the new indoor field house with pro-caliber turf, their new football offices/gym/film facilities, or the new athletic dorms that are on campus.  The revenue will continue to grow as the alumni population matures and this will be a power-house mulit-sport program that all BCS conferences will regret not adding. 

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