Highlighted by a trip to the BCS Championship Game, LSU’s 2011-12 athletic year was both a highly visible and profitable one.
According to numbers submitted under the U.S. Department of Education’s Equity in Athletics Disclosure Act, LSU ranked sixth nationally in 2011-12 with revenues of $113,964,540. After all expenses, the department managed a profit of $18,261,340.
According to Mark Ewing, the LSU athletic department’s chief financial officer, LSU’s $18.3 million profit came before the department donated approximately $8.2 million to the academic side of the university.
LSU’s total athletic revenue comes from a variety of sources such as ticket sales, TV and radio contracts and merchandising as well as donations through the Tiger Athletic Foundation.
Eleven schools reported revenues of more than $100 million, led by Texas with $163.3 million. LSU ranked third in the Southeastern Conference behind Alabama ($124.1 million) and Florida ($120.3 million). SEC members Auburn and Tennessee also were in the $100 million club at $106.0 million and $105.9 million. Arkansas ($99.8 million) just missed that mark.
Of LSU’s revenue, approximately 60 percent — $68,804,309 — came from football.
Ticket sales pass 10,000
LSU has sold just more than 10,000 tickets for the Dec. 31 Chick-fil-A Bowl against Clemson, according to senior associate athletic director Herb Vincent, though that number is still far short of the allotment of 16,000 the school received.
LSU is responsible for the entire allotment, meaning that if the school doesn’t sell all of its tickets, it will come out of any potential profits it makes from the game.
Vincent said the school is trying to promote ticket sales through a variety of sources, especially with alumni groups. The Atlanta area is one of LSU’s largest alumni areas outside Louisiana.
Tickets are still available through the LSU Athletic Ticket Office and at LSUSports.net. Tickets are $90 for lower-level and $80 for upper-level seats.
LSU will begin mailing out tickets Thursday.
Miles to get bowl bonus
Coach Les Miles will receive a $100,000 bonus for leading the Tigers to another bowl game, Vincent said.
The extra pay is part of Miles’ existing contract and not the new deal that he and LSU agreed to in principal last month. Miles will receive an as-yet-unspecified raise and a two-year extension on his contract, which will take him through the 2019 season.
Vincent said the next LSU Board of Supervisors meeting is in February, which is the earliest Miles’ contract could be approved.
Reid is ESPN All-American
Junior free safety Eric Reid was named to ESPN.com’s All-America team. Reid was earlier selected as an All-American by Walter Camp and CBSSports.com (second team).
Louisiana Tech punter Ryan Allenalso was picked by ESPN.
The Associated Press’ All-America team will be released Tuesday.
LSU ranks 7th in attendance
LSU ranked seventh nationally in attendance in 2012, though the school averaged slightly fewer fans per home game than it did in 2011.
LSU averaged 92,626 fans for its eight home games this season, compared to 92,868 for six home contests in 2011. Tiger Stadium’s capacity is 92,542, with the current south stadium expansion project to bring that number near 100,000 for the 2014 season.
The schools that ranked ahead of LSU in attendance have larger stadiums: Michigan (112,252), Ohio State (105,330), Alabama (101,722), Texas (100,884), Penn State (96,730) and Georgia (92,703).
According to The Birmingham News, average attendance across college football was 45,274 per game, the lowest since 2003.
LSU to be visiting team
LSU was designated the visiting team for the Chick-fil-A Bowl, according to a Twitter message from sports information director Michael Bonnette. LSU will wear its traditional white jerseys.
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