College basketball not big money in Chicago

Based on a March report released by CNN Money listing the revenues and expenses of all D-I basketball programs, the Chicago Five rank pretty much where you'd expect.


  • Northwestern: $9,328,062 (28th)
  • DePaul: $3,257,409 (88th)
  • Loyola: $1,597,239 (158th)
  • UIC: $1,303,094 (197th)
  • Chicago State: $721,356 (295th)

Together the colleges in Chicago account for 1.51 percent of the total revenues of college basketball.

Expenses and profits of the Chicago Five along with totals, anomalies and averages after the jump.

Expenses (profit or loss)

  • Northwestern: $3,720,715 (+$5,607,347)
  • DePaul: $3,257,409 ($0)
  • Loyola: $1,597,239 ($0)
  • UIC: $1,420,977 (-$117,883)
  • Chicago State: $721,356 ($0)

As the report notes, these numbers are very imprecise. It's very unlikely, for example, that the basketball programs of DePaul, Loyola and Chicago State all ended the season exactly even.

When schools report numbers to the Department of Education they have a lot of wiggle room with where the money coming in or going out gets reported. Revenues and expenses may get attributed under a general sports heading instead of specifically basketball, throwing everything off.

I calculated the average revenue for all D-I schools as $3,148,271, which is probably a pretty solid measurement of the sport as a whole. The average expense for all 342 schools was $2,326,465 for an average profit of $821,806.

College basketball, based on the numbers in the report, brought in $1,076,708,738 in total revenues. Of course these numbers are nothing in comparison to college football which brought in over $1.1 billion in profit last season.

Louisville reported the highest revenue for the season ($25,494,904), followed by UNC ($19,852,544) and Arizona ($17,524,360). Texas State-San Marcos reported the lowest revenue total ($231,984).

According to the report, NCAA runner-up Butler made $2 last season ($1,729,756 in revenue and $1,729,754 in expenses), and Duke lost more money playing basketball than anybody with $2,031,850 in losses.

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