Blue and yellow are the dominant colors on the SEC logo, but it should be draped in green. Why? Because the conference is rolling in cash. The SEC announced on Thursday that it generated approximately $651 million in revenue and distributed just over $44.6 million per school during the 2018-19 school year, excluding money bowl-eligible schools earned by playing in the postseason.
"The revenue distributed through the Southeastern Conference enables our 14 member universities to provide unparalleled support to their student-athletes through superior instruction, training, equipment, academic counseling, medical care, mental health and wellness support and life-skills development," commissioner Greg Sankey said in a statement. "It is this sustained conference-wide commitment to the student-athlete experience that makes this conference sound and its impact so meaningful."
The SEC's revenue jumped up from $627.1 million during the previous school year -- one in which schools raked in just over $43.1 million.
"In addition to supporting the overall student-athlete experience, revenues generated through SEC athletics can contribute in significant ways to the academic missions of the Conference's 14 universities," Sankey said. "These distributions provide each university the opportunity to make a positive impact on their respective campuses in ways unique to each institution. Past uses of this revenue on our campuses have included participation in the construction and renovation of academic facilities, support of academic scholarship opportunities, funding of academic programs and direct transfers of funds to support academic budgets."
Conference revenue is generated through television partnerships; postseason events such as bowl games, the College Football Playoff, the SEC Championship Game, conference basketball tournaments and NCAA-sponsored postseason tournaments.
The SEC trails the Big Ten, which generated $759 million and distributed approximately $54 million per school during the 2018 fiscal year.