SEC announces 2020-21 revenue distribution of $777.8 million

Published 3:40 pm Thursday, February 10, 2022

Southeastern Conference Commissioner Greg Sankey on Thursday announced that $777.8 million of total revenue was divided among the SEC’s 14 universities, including the University of Mississippi, for the 2020-21 fiscal year, which ended August 31, 2021.

The total includes $764.4 million distributed directly from the conference office, as well as $13.4 million retained by universities that participated in 2020-21 football bowl games to offset travel and other related bowl expenses.

The amount distributed from the conference office, excluding bowl expenses retained by participants, averaged slightly over $54.6 million per school.

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“The commitment of the SEC’s 14 universities to provide an impactful and lasting student-athlete experience is enhanced exponentially by the substantial revenue distributed through the Southeastern Conference,” said Sankey.  “As a direct result of this distribution, SEC universities provide their student-athletes exceptional instruction, training, equipment, academic counseling, medical care, mental health and wellness support and life-skill development that is unmatched in intercollegiate athletics.”

Currently more than 5,400 female and male student-athletes across the SEC receive financial aid, and counting non-scholarship participants, more than 7,100 total student-athletes participate in sports sponsored by SEC universities.

Athletics departments at all 14 SEC member universities continue to fund scholarships based on a student-athlete’s full cost of attendance.  In addition, each SEC university utilizes a portion of the revenues to fund a wide range of academic and campus improvement initiatives, including academic scholarships, endowed faculty positions, student wellness programs, research programs, and forward-looking building projects.

“SEC athletics programs often contribute in unique and significant ways to the academic missions of their universities as a result of athletics-generated revenues,” Sankey said.  “Past examples of the impact of this revenue have included assistance in construction and renovation of academic facilities, financial support of academic scholarships, funding of academic programs and direct transfers of funds to support academic budgets.”

The total distribution amount is comprised of revenue generated from television agreements, post-season bowl games, the College Football Playoff, the SEC Football Championship Game, the SEC Men’s Basketball Tournament, NCAA Championships and a supplemental surplus distribution.

The distribution amount does not include a one-time supplement of approximately $23 million provided to each school in 2021 to help mitigate the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on SEC athletics programs, or an additional $7.8 million of NCAA and SEC grants divided among the 14 member universities.

The total revenue for 2020-21 is an increase above the $657.7 million distributed in 2019-20.  The average per school distribution increased from $45.5 million in 2019-20, not including bowl money retained by participants.