Sunday, April 23, 2006

Colorado Men's Tennis

University of Colorado Athletic Director Mike Bohn has recommended eliminating men's tennis after this year due to budget concerns. The annual budget of CU men's tennis is $350,000. The entire CU athletic department budget is roughly $36 mil. Instead of totally eliminating a sport, are there any other places to save money? Are there any extraordinary, short term expenses that will not be part of the budget going forward? Let's take those in reverse order.

As a result of Title IX lawsuits stemming from the football recruiting scandal the athletic department's liability insurance premiums doubled. For FY 2007 the premiums will be $831,000 higher than the previous year for a total of $1.66 mil. These extraordinarily high premiums are budgeted to last indefinitely, but should fall again as no new lawsuits are filed and no payments result.

Another monster increase in expenses can be found in Exhibit 6 on page 64 of the draft CU Athletics Business Plan. The monster increase in expenses comes from the Athletic Director's Office line in the budget. For school year 2004-05, the AD's Office expense was $483,925. For school year 2005-06, that line item jumped by $337,375 to $821,300. That jump is roughly equal to the men's tennis budget. But the jump turns out to be more than that. The $821,300 number was the budget before the year began, that number in the current budget for 2005-06 is another $116,525 higher at $937,825. So over the past year, the AD's Office expense line item in the budget has grown by $453,900. That is over $100,000 more than the annual men's tennis budget.

I for one would like an explanation of the massive increase in expenses coming out of the AD's Office, especially since the increased expense from that office greatly exceeds the savings from totally eliminating a sport that CU has managed to sponsor since before WWI.

For more information on the effort to save CU men's tennis, go to the Save CU Tennis web site.

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