Wisconsin Athletic Department Seeks $159M Budget | Athletic Business

Wisconsin Athletic Department Seeks $159M Budget

The University of Wisconsin-Madison athletics department is looking to secure a lot more for the coming fiscal year.

The Badger Athletic Board’s Finance, Facilities and Operations Committee on Wednesday unanimously voted to forward a request for a budget of $159.4 million to the full board on Friday.

The 2019-20 budget is $15.9 million higher than the previous year, and $54.8 million more than it was five years ago.

Mario Morris, UW’s associate athletic director told the Wisconsin State Journal, that the increase was in large part due to $20 million in spending on three major capital projects and a 2 percent increase in the campus centralized services assessment for shared operations. 

The UW is working towards completion of the Nicholas Recreation Center, where its swimming and diving teams will compete. Another $3.8 million will go towards planned renovations at the Kohl Center and Camp Randall Stadium.

Expenses have risen for the school as the UW covers the full cost of school attendance, additional meals for athletes and tacked on services in academics, psychology and strength and conditioning. 

“That’s something that we have to do,” Morris said. “We’ve been fortunate we’re in the Big Ten with the new television contract. We’re fortunate to have great fans and donors that continue to support us. And we’re fortunate to have a great program.”

As it stands, the UW’s biggest source of revenue are Big Ten Conference distributions. Media rights deals are projected to bring in $44 million or 28 percent of total revenue in the coming fiscal year. Gifted funds will bring in $41 million, while ticket sales will amount to an estimated $32 million.

The UW’s primary projects this year involve a renovation and expansion of the Kohl Center, where the school will centralize student-athlete services and an expansion of the south end zone at Camp Randall Stadium.

The Kohl Center plans call for a new space for academic services, strength training, nutrition and basketball team offices, while the Camp Randall expansion will involve the creation of a field-level club to the south side, with club and loge seats and an outdoor terrace above.

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