Michigan and Michigan State were among the leaders in Division I athletic spending in 2015-16, according to a USA Today Sports survey.
The Wolverines ranked fifth nationally in total revenue at $163,850,616. Only Ohio State (third nationally at $170,789,765) ranks higher among Big Ten schools. Michigan’s total expenses are $157,872,099, third-most in the nation, for a net profit of $5,978,517.
The Spartans are 16th overall and fifth in the Big Ten in total revenue at $123,034,495.
That goes with $121,892,394 in expenses, which are 13th-most in Division I. However, the study found that MSU also had $1,012,631 allocated from “the sum of student fees, direct and indirect institutional support and state money allocated to the athletics department, minus certain funds the department transferred back to the school.”
“This amount takes into account $420,972 that the athletics department transferred back to the school and – under a 2016 change in the NCAA's reporting system – is recorded as a revenue loss,” according to USA Today. “This transfer amount cannot exceed the sum of money the department received from student fees and the school: $420,972.”
According to USA TODAY, the NCAA and others consider student fees, direct and indirect institutional support and state money “allocated,” or everything not generated by the department’s athletics functions.
MSU experienced a drop in ticket sales revenue of more than $600,000 and an increase in school funds of more than $300,000. However, it also enjoyed a rise in contributions of more than $4 million and an increase in rights/licensing by more than $4 million. MSU also received more than $12.5 million in other revenue, much coming from the Spartans' appearance in the College Football Playoff in December 2015.
The expenses for MSU’s scholarships went up more than $2 million with the cost of attendance stipend, while coaches’ salaries also increased by nearly $2 million.
Michigan’s ticket sales revenue increased by more than $3 million from 2014-15. The Wolverines also saw an increase of more than $4.6 million in rights/licensing. U-M’s athletic department received $266,467 in school funds, up a little over $3,000 from the previous year.
Michigan coaches earned more than $56 million in salary for 2015-16, up a little less than a million dollars from the previous year. The school also spent more than $2.5 million on scholarships after the cost of attendance stipend was enacted.