Ole Miss Fans Donate to Athletes Through Fins Up Fund | Athletic Business

Ole Miss Fans Donate to Athletes Through Fins Up Fund

The University of Mississippi has created a fund to help student-athletes affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

A letter from Ole Miss athletic director Keith Carter announced that after hearing from a number of fans who wanted to help athletes the Fins Up Fund has been “established to support student-athletes who are facing extreme circumstances as a result of the coronavirus.”

Carter said the money will “go directly to assisting with medical bills and other necessary expenses resulting from an illness to either the student-athlete or his/her family member(s).” Other expenses could be groceries, toiletries or academic supplies for online classes.

Carter’s letter also said that the Papa John’s Pizza in Oxford participated in a weekly meal card program for athletes, while Ole Miss is distributing training equipment to help athletes work out from home.

The University of Georgia, Ole Miss’ opponent in the SEC, also announced ways it is navigating the revenue losses that come with the shutdown of NCAA sports.

According to Dawg Nation, Georgia has $102,940,345 in reserve funds that will allow the athletic department to stay afloat even if football season is canceled or postponed by coronavirus. Georgia football reportedly brings in an annual revenue of about $70 million, while the school has a $153 million annual athletic budget.

Georgia’s fund is made up of donations, unused revenue from previous years and investment income. Dawg Nation cited a Learfield/IMG Sport release that showed that 41 percent of Power 5 schools, and 26 percent of Group of 5 schools have a reserve fund.

“We are in a position to weather the storm for a period of time due to the conservative approach that’s been a part of Georgia athletics dating back to the days of Joel Eaves,” said Georgia athletic director Greg McGarity. “We’re really in healthy shape, and we’re one of the few that are. You can only imagine the angst with institutions that don’t have the financial reserves that we have.”

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