Washington State University Athletics Budget FAQ
Q: Does WSU Athletics direct any of the Pac-12 Conference television money back to the university?
A: Over the last three years WSU Athletics has reduced its dependency on university support by $4.5 million by absorbing employee benefits and Pac-12 Conference dues, line items once covered by the university. By covering those expenses within the athletic department those monies are able remain in the general university budget.
Q: Are there any State funds provided to WSU Athletics?
A: As of today there are no state funds used for athletics outside of those that are legislatively mandated and gender equity based. Additionally, a small portion of monies cover the compliance office operating expenditures to ensure no undue influence by the athletics staff.
Q: How did WSU invest the money from the Pac-12 Conference media rights deal?
A: In addition to covering the $4.5 million previously received in university support, WSU Athletics invested a large portion of the Pac-12 monies in facilities and staffing enhancements. In the past four years Washington State has invested nearly $135 million in improvements to Martin Stadium, including premium seating options and media accommodations, along with an 80,000 square foot Football Operations Building.
Q: Why did we invest in those areas?
A: Facilities are the life blood of recruiting and that's where successful programs begin. We are making an investment in our future and doing so without the benefit of any state monies. This allows us to remain a credible and viable member of the Pac-12 Conference and to enhance our success in a very competitive environment. When the Pac-12 signed its new television contract prior to the 2011-12 academic year, conference revenues for each school rose dramatically. WSU Athletics chose to invest those revenues in facilities and staff, which are the most important components when recruiting 17-19 year old student-athletes. Many conference members followed suit as within 12 months of the Pac-12 media rights deal being completed, it was reported that nearly $1 billion of facility projects were in development throughout the conference.
Q: How long before Athletics becomes profitable again?
A: WSU Athletics expects to be profitable in FY17.
Q: How much is the debt service for the new facilities, specifically Martin Stadium?
A: The debt service for the recent facility enhancements at Martin Stadium has added nearly $7 million per year to the athletics budget.
Q: Are there any other new facility projects in the future?
A: WSU Athletics has gained Regents approval for a multi-million dollar facility upgrade for the soccer venue, using existing resources and no new debt service. That project began last month. Additionally, the athletic department has placed a greater focus on investing in staff that directly affects the student-athlete, which includes a sports nutritionist, an improved training table and a coordinator of student-athlete well-being, to name a few ways student-athlete support has improved.