Football is big business in the United States, and we are not just talking about at the professional level either. Small towns the country over almost shut down every Friday night in the fall for the high school football game. When it comes to college football, stadiums are packed just about every Saturday. This means a lot of money. How much money you might be asking yourself? Well, take a look at the following list of 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises to get a good picture.
20. The University of Nebraska - Revenue of $83 Million
While it seems that the best days are behind them, The University of Nebraska still commands quite the presence on the football circuit. They have a revenue of $83, leading to profits of $46 million. While their on field product has not been up to the par recently that it was during the Tom Osborne era, Cornhusker football is still wildly popular. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
19. The University of Washington - Revenue of $84 Million
One of three schools from the PAC-12 to make this list, the Huskies are a football program with a sizable following. The past few years have really seen their stock value rise. They now have a revenue of $84 million and profits of $36 million. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
18. The University of Southern California - Revenue of $87 Million
Yet another team from the PAC-12, the University of Southern California is one of only two private schools to make this list. They have plenty of money to show for it. The team has $87 million in revenue to go with its $47 million in profits. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
17. Florida State University - Revenue of $88 Million
The Seminoles and Bobby Bowden seem to define the city of Tallahassee. This explains why Florida State University has risen to the top in terms of money for its football program. They have a revenue of $88 million on top of profits of $41 million. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
16. The University of Georgia - Revenue of $89 Million
The Bulldogs hail from the SEC and that alone is worthy of raking in a few bucks. They do not need much help, however, as the University of Georgia has a solid base. They now have a revenue of $89 million and profits of just over $55 million. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
15. The University of South Carolina - Revenue of $90 Million
In the 15th spot on this list is the University of South Carolina. On the heels of an estimated $90 million in revenue, they consistently post profits of $50 million. While they might not compete for many national championships, the love that Gamecock fans have for their team in undeniable. They are in the SEC, which contributes a great deal to their financial success. Steve Spurrier helped get them back to the top, so now we will need to see if Will Muschamp can carry them through in the future. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
14. Penn State University - Revenue of $92 Million
Anybody with a pulse on college football in familiar with Joe Paterno and Penn State University. While that era might be over, the fact remains that the university has a revenue of $92 million and roughly $48 million in profits. The indications are that the program is actually doing even better financially than these figures represent, so do not be surprised if the team moves up even higher tin the future. They recently won the Big Ten Championship and they appear poised to return to their consistent winning ways that they are well known for. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
13. The University of Arkansas - Revenue of $92 Million
Being on this list be a surprise to some, but not to die hard Razorback fans. The University of Arkansas football team has a revenue of $92 million and consistently posts a profit of $54 million. On the field, they have may not have performed nearly as well. In fact, they just signed off on the Bret Beilema, and that did not go very well. However, they are still in great shape financially at the end of the day. Game days routinely see the stadium filled to the rafters. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
12. The University of Oregon - Revenue of $92 Million
The Chip Kelly era of high scoring offense might be over, but the profits continue to soar here. The University of Oregon is a college football franchise that has a revenue of $92 million. Out of that, they can expect a profit of $54 million. This team has a strong affiliation with Nike, which obviously helps when it comes to money. Since Chip Kelly, there has been a coaching drought at the university, which several of them coming and going. They will want some consistency moving forward if they hope to compete at the highest levels, but at least they know the money is there. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
11. The University of Tennessee - Revenue of $108 Million
This should not come as a surprise to anyone in the college football world unless it is that they thought the University of Tennessee would be ranked even higher. They have a revenue of $108 million, with profits of $60 million. On game days, there are more people in the stadium than the actual city that the school is located in. That speaks something to the fan base. They are unshakeable, even during dry spells when the performance on the field is not up to part. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
10. The University of Florida - Revenue of $111 Million
It seems that the Gators are always in the hunt when the season begins, even if they have had somewhat of a tumultuous time of it since Steve Spurrier left. That being said, the University of Florida has a revenue of $111 million, with profits of roughly $67 million. This makes them one of a number of teams from the SEC that is worth more than $100 million. That speaks something to their staying power. With Jim McElwain now in charge of the program, the future appears to be bright in Gainesville. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
9. Louisiana State University - Revenue of $112 Million
This is another team in the rankings that should come as no surprise. The consistency of having Les Miles at the helm for so many years obviously helped. Louisiana State University has a revenue of $112 Million and more than $56 million in profits. Miles left the program in 2016, but he did so by putting it in great financial shape. Ed Orgeron is now at the helm and working hard to keep it that way. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
8. Auburn University - Revenue of $112 Million
Often referred to as that other Alabama school, Auburn University obviously takes offense at that. They are one of the most profitable NCAA football teams in the country by posting a revenue of $112 Million and profits of $61 Million. They have long been able to fill their stadiums, and having Cam Newton as its most famous alumni obviously helps with recruiting. With Gus Malzahn now at the helm, commanding a hefty salary at the same time, the hope is that the money can keep coming in.
7. Notre Dame University - Revenue of $112 Million
As one of the two private schools on the list, Notre Dame University is no stranger to being near the top. They have a revenue of $112 million and profits of an estimated $72 million. This is because of the major television contracts that they hold and their partnership in playing some of the top college programs in the country on a regular basis. They are not afraid to stick it out there on the line and create one of the toughest schedules in the country. They are an independent school with a tremendous record. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
6. The University of Oklahoma - Revenue of $118 Million
It does not seem right that Bob Stoops is no longer there, but he sure left the University of Oklahoma in tremendous financial shape. They have a revenue base of $118 million and earn $72 million in profits. With Lincoln Riley now in charge, the future already appears bright. They were recently right in the thick of the College Football Playoff picture. The university is in the Big 12 and one of the heavy hitters at that. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
5. Ohio State University - Revenue of $120 Million
As one of the largest universities in the country, it is only fitting that Ohio State University would be near the top of this list. While Urban Meyer has had some health scares of late, the school itself is in tremendous fiscal shape. They have posted revenue of $120 million and profits of $69 million. They are consistently in the hunt for a national title and are at the top of the annual recruiting rankings. Regardless of who takes over for the long term after Meyer packs it in, they will be inheriting a program that has a solid fan base and appears to be in good shape. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
4. The University of Alabama - Revenue of $127 Million
The only surprise here is that many people might have pegged the University of Alabama to be at the top of this list. Nonetheless, here they sit at a number four. For a team that appears poised to the college football’s equivalent of a dynasty, that might seem disappointing, but revenue of $127 million should make them happy at the end of the day. Out of that, they have $59 million in profits, probably thanks to their higher than average payroll. In fact, this team spends more than $68 million a year on its football program, which is more than 20 percent over what the next closest team spends. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
3. The University of Michigan - Revenue of $127 Million
With a stadium that holds more people than the average city in the state, it is no surprise that the University of Michigan would be near the top here. They have $127 million in. Revenue and $75 in profits. That pack fans into their stadium on a yearly basis, no matter who good the on field product actually is. With Jim Harborough now at the helm, recruiting has obviously seen a boost and the team is back to its winning ways. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
2. The University of Texas - Revenue of $133 Million
Here is one of two Texas schools on the list, and they just happen to be number one and number two. This speaks to the fact that in Texas, football is like religion. Everyone seems to have it in their blood. They have over $133 million in revenue and $87 million in profits. They receive a lot of money from the licensing of their products and from advertising. This is more than any other team in the country is able to make. Add that to a consistency good on the field team, and the money keeps coming in. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today.
1. Texas A&M University - Revenue of $148 Million
Texas A&M University tops the list by posting a revenue of $148 million and an astounding $107 million in profits. This demonstrates their value by being able to turn money into money. They do not spend as heavily as other programs, yet they are able to bring in the cash. A new stadium has just been completed, making it the third largest in the country. That obviously helps. This is why they are one of the top 20 most valuable NCAA football franchises today. So, there you have it. These are the 20 richest football programs currently operating at the NCAA Division One level today. Do any of the teams surprise you? Which are not on the list that you really thought would be? Football is big business in America, and this list is indicative of that.
Written by Bill Vix
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