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MADNESS, PART II: FOLLOWING THE TRAIL OF RIGHTS FEES?
Published March 14, 1996
The NCAA tournament, which begins today, has become the NCAA's "cash cow," according to Paul Kenyon of the PROVIDENCE JOURNAL-BULLETIN. The NCAA's $1.725B rights deal with CBS is one of the reasons NCAA revenue has "skyrocketed" from $99M in '89-90 to a budgeted $222.2M for this year. That is mostly TV revenue, but '95 ticket sales hit $14.1M with radio rights at $2.87M and merchandising bringing i,n another $500,000. More than 80% of the NCAA budget is derived from basketball revenue. Distribution includes a Broad Based Distributing Plan where all member schools share in the plan, with money "awarded based on the number of varsity sports a college offers and the number of scholarships it provides." The Basketball Fund distributed almost $40M to schools last year by conference. Last year, the ACC received $5.3M, the Big East $4M, and the A-10 $1.7M (PROVIDENCE JOURNAL- BULLETIN, 3/14).