Basketball Conferences Realign to Shoot for $150 Million Profit

Basketball Conferences Realign to Shoot for $150 Million Profit

Fox Sports 1 made the Big East the only basketball conference to top $150 million in profit this year as the conference also grabs the most top recruits per team. The ACC may pass the mark with the addition of a program more profitable than all but a few football teams, and Maryland may take the Big Ten above the $150 million mark as well.

Follow the money to understand all of the conference moves:

Conference Top Recruits NBA/team Profit Profit
Big East 1st 5th 1st $154,122,296
Big Ten 5th 6th 2nd $138,054,933
ACC 2nd 2nd 3rd $133,479,911
SEC 3rd 3rd 4th $124,636,534
Big 12 6th 4th 5th $105,706,308
Pac 12 4th 1st 6th $80,129,005

A study I did a few years ago for Cracked Sidewalks showed that 37 basketball programs and Minnesota hockey joined 62 football programs to form the most profitable 100 college programs. Louisville basketball ranked ahead of all but 18 football programs once accounting for the impact of Title IX (men’s basketball requires only a women’s basketball team that can at least come close to breaking even, while 85 men’s football scholarships require a lot of matching women’s scholarships at a much greater cost).

According to a recent 110 Nations Sport report, Maryland could take their $8 million basketball profit from the ACC to Big Ten, but Louisville more than makes up for it with $25 million in basketball profit.

Statistic Brain calculated the conference profits listed above after the NCAA basketball tournament, which showed the Big East as the most profitable basketball conference after the debut of Fox Sports 1 (as reflected in the numbers on the table above). 

A recent Breitbart Sports story calculated that the Pac 12 had the most NBA players per team followed by the ACC, while the Rivals 150 shows that the Big East had 2.1 top recruits per team (21 per 10 teams), followed by the ACC (30 for 15 teams for 2.0), SEC (26 by 14 for 1.9), Pac 12 (20 by 12 for 1.7), Big Ten (19 by 14 for 1.4), and Big 12 (11 by 10 for 1.1). No other conference had more than 0.5 top 150 recruits per team.

Here are the 16 teams changing conferences for this season:

  1. Appalachian St.: Sun Belt – came from Southern
  2. Davidson: A10 – came from Southern
  3. East Carolina: American – came from CUSA
  4. East Tennessee St.: Southern – came from ASun
  5. Elon: CAA – came from SC
  6. Georgia Southern: Sun Belt – came from Southern
  7. Idaho: Big Sky – came from WAC
  8. Louisville: ACC – came from Amercan
  9. Maryland: B10 – came from ACC
  10. Mercer: Southern – came from ASun
  11. Oral Roberts: Summit – came from Southland
  12. Rutgers: B10 – came from Amercan
  13. Tulane: American – came from CUSA
  14. Tulsa: American – came from CUSA
  15. VMI: Southern – came from BSth
  16. Western Kentucky: CUSA – came from SB