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August 05, 2002 - Image 15

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 2002-08-05

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

The Michigan Daily - Monday, August 5, 2002 -15
Fundraising needed to raise budget

By Bob Hunt
Daily Sports Editor
Fiscally, all is well in the Michigan
Athletic Department.
For now that is.
After three years of budget deficits,
the department has announced a better
than projected $5.5 million surplus for
the 2001-02 fiscal year (it budgeted for
a $1.1 million surplus) and has project-
ed a $1.825 million surplus for the
upcoming 2002-03 fiscal year.
But these surpluses could be short
lived. During the next two years, the
department will be reeling an extra $4
million off a calendar abnormality that
allows the school to schedule a seventh
home football game. However the
department will have to live without
that extra cash starting with the 2004-
05 fiscal year, for which they currently
have no means of making up depart-
ment CFO Jason Winters said.
One way that the department is trying
to recover that money is through addi-
tional fundraising. Historically, Michigan
has not had to actively fundraise to cover

its budget, making it 10th out of the Big
Ten's 11 schools in fundraising, accord-
ing to a Department of Education Equity
in Athletics DisclosureAct survey.
"Over time the gap has gotten con-
siderably bigger as other institutions
have established and continued to
enhance donation programs that are
tied to point systems or ticket benefits,"
Winters said.
Many schools now require season
ticket holders for popular sports to
submit an annual gift to their athletic
department such as Ohio State,
Penn State and Wisconsin for football
and Michigan State for basketball.
Michigan has never required such
gifts and does not plan on doing so in
the near future. But the athletic depart-
ment is actively fundraising for a new
academic success center, a field house,
baseball. and softball stadiums and a
basketball and wrestling practice facili-
ty. Major benefactors have been found
for the academic success center and the
baseball stadium, but nothing has been
announced as of yet.
The department also has to deal with

a lack of corporate sponsorship as the
sponsorship and naming rights markets
have bottomed out, according to Win-
ters. The ending of a few corporate con-
tracts - the biggest of which being
with BankOne - has diminished the
department's revenues from sponsor-
ship from $5.3 million for the 2001-02
fiscal year to $4.25 million for the
2002-03 fiscal year.
Michigan considered many options
to increase its corporate sponsorship -
including adding Ford Motor Company
and General Motors signs to Michigan
Stadium - but such plans have been
put on hold due to the current econom-
ic climate.
The school does benefit, however,
from licensing royalties that are second
among schools that use the Collegiate
Licensing Company - including North
Carolina, Tennessee, Nebraska, Florida
and Penn State. Last season, the athlet-
ic department brought in an extra
$600,000 on football tickets that were
originally slated to be sold to students
but were sold to the public because of a
drop of in student season ticket sales.

Fewer Michigan students will be lifted when the Wolverines score this fall.

TICKETS
Continued from Page :3
to the public. The athletic department
considered placing a student ticket cap
of 20,000, but according to Bodnar
students felt that they would rather
have the ID system in place instead of
a cap.
Both Penn State and Wisconsin have
student ticket caps of 21,000 and
13,000 respectively, but Ohio State
does not. Penn State gives students
tickets on a first-come, first-serve
basis, while Wisconsin has a lottery
system.
Students should not expect long
lines in front of Michigan Stadium
though as Gate 10 - the gate most
students use - has been expanded by
50 percent to accommodate the ID
checking. But the expansion of Gate
10 does not mean that students cannot
enter the stadium at any gate.
As many as 23,000 students have
purchased season tickets since the
Wolverines won their last champi-
onship in 1997, but the amount of stu-
dent season ticket sales has gone down
over the past two years. The amount of
student season ticket holders began to
from $13.50 per game to $17.50 per
decline after student prices increased
for this season.
Although student prices have
increased $5 over the past two years,
Michigan' prices ae comparable with
its rivals. Ohio State students pay $21
a game while Illinois students pay $11
dollars a game. Because of the decline
in student ticket sales, the athletic
department is now offering three-game
ticket packages for the public with the
Breaking the bank
Each year students at schools with major
college football programs have to pay
more to see their school's squads on the
gridiron. Here is what it costs at Michi-
gan and some other Big Ten schools:
PENN STATE: $19 per gameX 8 home games
= $152 for season
MIcIAN: $18.50 per game X 7 home
games = $129.50 fsr season
WISCENS $1.50 per game 0 5 home
games = $116 tsr season
tHIs SeamE: $21 per games X4 home
games* = $84 for season
LNIS: $11 per gameX 6 home games=
$6e tsr season
*Ohio State offers a four-game season tick-
et package because of its school schedule.

tickets not to be used by either the stu-
dent and 73,400 public season ticket
holders. The Maize package, which
includes games against Washington,
Utah and Iowa, costs $143 while the
Blue package, which includes games
against Western Michigan, Penn State
and Wisconsin, costs $138. Although
no official numbers were available,
Bodnar said sales for the packages
were going "very well."
Right now there are no plans to
increase the number of public season
ticket holders - there are currently
6,000 people waiting for season tickets
- as the athletic department wants to
make sure that all students who want
tickets are able to purchase them.
"We want to give our best efforts to
get every student a season ticket,"
Bodnar said. "But as it drops off, like
its dropped off now, we don't know
what the next year will bring or the
next two or three years. So we have to
be very careful in terms of turning
seats into season tickets. If we turn
over a bunch of them into season tick-
ets and it's back up to 21, 22, 23,000,
what do you do?"
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