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Auburn Manages Profit Despite Ongoing Pandemic

Andy Berg

The Auburn University athletics department appears to have skirted any major financial impact from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

The athletics department this year reported a record total operating revenue of more than $153.7 million, according to the NCAA Membership Financial Report, which was provided to the Montgomery Advertiser.

The boost in revenue came with a decrease in spending. Auburn’s spending dropped from $139.3 million in the 2018-19 fiscal year to $135.8 in 2019-20, resulting in a profit of nearly $17.9 million. That’s the sixth straight year that the school has operated at a surplus.

Athletics director Allen Green said that if COVID-19 does end up impacting the school’s finances, it will be seen in the 2020-21 fiscal year.

Auburn reported $31 million from football ticket sales along, which amounts to nearly $2 million more than the prior season.

The football program brought in nearly $96.7 million in revenue during 2019, which makes the program responsible for nearly 63 percent of Auburn's earnings.

Auburn’s basketball program was less lucrative. Due at least in part to the canceled NCAA Tournament, Auburn men's basketball earned just $820,000, down from $3.2 million on the previous year.

The school’s biggest increase in revenue came from media rights, which were $2 million higher than 2018-19.

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