SEC school split $127M

The rich keep getting richer and the SEC ... well, it just keeps laughing all the way to the bank.

Commissioner Mike Slive announced at the SEC Spring Meetings today in Destin, Fla., that the 12 member institutions will split a record $127.2 million as part of the revenue-sharing plan for the fiscal year (Sept. 1, 2007 through Aug. 31, 2008). That breaks down to $10.6 million per school.

The vast majority of this money, of course, comes from football. It is THE cash cow that enables SEC schools to fund most of their other sports. According to Slive, $50.6 million was derived from football television, $25.3 million from bowl revenue and $13.7 million from the SEC Championship Game.

Incredibly, the SEC Championship Game in football generated $700,000 more revenue in one evening than an entire season of SEC basketball telecasts ($13.0 million). The SEC Men's Basketball Tournament brought in $2.8 million, despite a tornado forcing the event to move from The Georgia Dome to Georgia Tech's campus. The league's assorted NCAA Championship appearances brought in an additional $21.8 million.

Here are some more fascinating facts from Slive's desk:

The $127.2 million in shared revenue is more than double the total of just 10 years ago. The distribution in 1998 was just $61.2 million. Go back another 10 years, and the total was just $14.34 million in 1988.

SEC TV revenues should continue to skyrocket. The league has produced the last two NCAA football champs (Florida in 2006, LSU in 2007), two of the last three NCAA men's basketball champs (Florida in 2006 and 2007) and the last two NCAA women's basketball champs (Tennessee in 2007 and 2008).

Clearly, SEC athletics is big business, and business is booming.

Inside Tennessee Top Stories