SHARE

Football Bowl Games: View From the Sidelines

Football Bowl Games: View From the Sidelines
December 4, 2007

Sure, you can go to ESPN or USA Today and drown in statistics about yards per carry and turnover ratios and profiles of the coaches and star players on the teams in this season's college football bowl games. But where do you go for the really important information about the bowl games -- you know, like how much money the teams and their conferences are sharing, and how the colleges' teams fare in the classroom?

Here, of course.

After a season filled arguably as never before with high-profile upsets, the annual talk of a full-blown playoff for the nation's highest-powered college football teams (like the one that exists in what used to be called Division I-AA, now called the Football Championship Subdivision), has intensified. But any change that might seriously undermine the existing football bowl structure is unlikely. That's partly because it leaves coaches and college presidents (and alumni, of course) affiliated with the 32 victorious universities smiling, and partly because of the financial payouts the bowls make to the participating colleges and their conferences, and the economic impact that the games themselves have on the host cities of the bowl games.

All told, the bowl games will provide roughly $245 million to the colleges whose teams will participate in the next month's games, much of which will be shared with their fellow conference members. (The exact amount is unclear, in part because the payouts are estimates and in part because one sponsor of several bowl games, ESPN Regional Television, declined to reveal the payments it planned to make to participating teams. A spokesman for ESPN could not be reached for comment on why the company -- whose television and magazine reporters are highly critical when teams or other parties withhold relevant salary or other financial information -- declined to provide the numbers.) Key information about the bowls, including their payout levels, which were drawn from the games' Web sites or other news sources, follows in the table below:

The 2008 Bowl Games, the Participants and the Payouts

Bowl Date Location Participating Universities Estimated payout per team
Poinsettia Bowl December 20 San Diego Utah vs. Navy $750,000
New Orleans Bowl December 21 New Orleans Florida Atlantic v. Memphis $325,000
Papajohn's Bowl December 22 Birmingham, Ala. Cincinnati v.
Southern Mississippi
$300,000
New Mexico Bowl December 22 Albuquerque New Mexico v. Nevada-Reno ESPN declined
to provide
Las Vegas Bowl December 22 Las Vegas Brigham Young v. UCLA ESPN declined
to provide
Hawaii Bowl December 23 Honolulu Boise State v. East Carolina $750,000
Motor City Bowl December 26 Detroit Purdue v. Central Michigan $750,000
Holiday Bowl December 27 San Diego Arizona State v. Texas $2.25 million
Champs Sports Bowl December 28 Orlando Boston College v. Michigan State $2.125 million
Texas Bowl December 28 Houston Texas Christian v. Houston $750,000
Emerald Bowl December 28 San Francisco Oregon State v. Maryland $750,000-
$825,000
Meineke Car Care Bowl December 29 Charlotte Connecticut v. Wake Forest $1 million
Liberty Bowl December 29 Memphis Central Florida v. Mississippi State $1.7 million
Alamo Bowl December 29 San Antonio Penn State v. Texas A&M $2.225 million
Independence Bowl December 30 Shreveport, La. Colorado v. Alabama $1.1 million
Armed Forces Bowl December 31 Fort Worth, Tex. California v. Air Force $750,000
Sun Bowl December 31 El Paso, Tex. Oregon v. South Florida $1.9 million
Humanitarian Bowl December 31 Boise, Idaho Fresno State v. Georgia Tech $750,000
Music City Bowl December 31 Nashville Kentucky v. Florida State $1.65 million
Insight Bowl December 31 Tempe, Ariz. Indiana v. Oklahoma State $1.2 million
Chic-Fil-A Bowl December 31 Atlanta Clemson v. Auburn $2.915 million
Outback Bowl January 1 Tampa, Fla. Wisconsin v. Tennessee $3.1 million
Cotton Bowl January 1 Dallas Missouri v. Arkansas $3 million
Gator Bowl January 1 Jacksonville, Fla. Virginia v. Texas Tech $2.5 million
Capital One Bowl January 1 Orlando Michigan v. Florida $4.25 million
Rose Bowl January 1 Pasadena, Calif. Southern California v. Illinois $17 million
Sugar Bowl January 1 New Orleans Georgia v. Hawaii $17 million
Fiesta Bowl January 2 Glendale, Ariz. West Virginia v. Oklahoma $17 million
Orange Bowl January 3 Miami Virginia Tech v. Kansas $17 million
International Bowl January 5 Toronto Ball State v. Rutgers $750,000
GMAC Bowl January 6 Mobile, Ala. Bowling Green v. Tulsa $750,000
BCS Championship January 7 New Orleans Ohio State v. Louisiana State $17 million

Another alternative prism through which to view the upcoming bowl games is by looking at the academic performance of the football players at the colleges and universities involved. The University of Central Florida's Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport has done that work for us, collecting the relevant NCAA information -- on the Academic Progress Rate and the Graduate Success Rates -- for the 64 universities whose teams are participating in the bowl games between now and January 7.

Among the group's findings:

  • 47 schools (73 percent) had graduation rates of 66 percent or higher for white football players, which was more than 3.6 times the number of schools with equivalent graduation rates for African-American football athletes (13 schools or 20 percent).
  • 27 schools (42 percent) graduated less than 50 percent of their African-American football players, while only Florida Atlantic graduated less than 50 percent of their white football athletes.
  • Seven schools (11 percent) graduated less than 40 percent of their African-American football student-athletes, while no school graduated less than 40 percent of their white football student-athletes.

Academic Performance of Bowl-Bound Football Teams, 2008

      Graduation Success Rate
Bowl Participants Academic Progress Rate All Football Players African-American Football Players White Football Players All Athletes
BCS National Championship Ohio State 928 53% 43% 74% 77%
Louisiana State 941 51 42 70 69
Sugar Bowl Georgia 963 41 29 67 65
Hawaii 902 45 38 57 65
Orange Bowl Virginia Tech 928 72 70 78 83
Kansas 918+ 56 49 64 70
Fiesta Bowl Oklahoma 936 44 40 53 65
West Virginia 924+ 65 59 71 68
Rose Bowl Southern California 947 57 53 59 68
Illinois 926 73 61 84 88
GMAC Bowl Bowling Green 921+ 76 74 80 87
Tulsa 935 59 48 66 73
International Bowl Rutgers 971 55 57 55 75
Ball State 942 81 79 84 85
Capital One Bowl Michigan 958 73 56 92 83
Florida 961 72 64 86 89
Gator Bowl Virginia 948 68 62 81 85
Texas Tech 931 79 70 86 73
Outback Bowl Wisconsin 935 61 52 69 78
Tennessee 938 52 47 60 75
Cotton Bowl Missouri 934 60 47 81 70
Arkansas 934 53 35 88 66
Humanitarian Bowl Georgia Tech 959 51 34 81 69
Fresno State 945 50 45 58 63
Chick-fil-A Bowl Clemson 945 75 75 75 84
Auburn 967 59 47 84 75
Meineke Car Care Bowl Connecticut 963 78 85 81 79
Wake Forest 966 90 89 90 93
Alamo Bowl Penn State 960 76 76 79 88
Texas A&M 922+ 62 59 70 73
Champs Sports Bowl Boston College 976 93 90 94 96
Michigan State 922+ 43 35 58 79
Insight Bowl Indiana 943 67 61 77 82
Oklahoma State 924+ 64 56 81 73
Liberty Bowl Central Florida 928 46 40 63 74
Mississippi State 921+ 64 52 95 74
Sun Bowl South Florida 910+ 61 59 73 75
Oregon 912+ 55 41 78 70
Music City Bowl Florida State 952 58 60 50 78
Kentucky 946 59 51 71 71
Texas Bowl Houston 928 49 46 55 63
Texas Christian 962 69 66 74 68
Holiday Bowl Texas 944 42 30 67 74
Arizona State 926 55 53 64 68
Independence Bowl Colorado 934 68 61 78 78
Alabama 942 49 41 73 73
Emerald Bowl Maryland 944 69 62 80 78
Oregon State 913+ 62 47 72 75
Motor City Bowl Central Michigan 921+ 68 53 82 80
Purdue 915+ 70 61 74 82
Hawaii Bowl East Carolina 921+ 75 72 83 78
Boise State 955 63 54 70 73
Armed Forces Bowl U.S. Air Force 975 92 84 92 93
California 965 52 49 58 75
New Mexico Bowl New Mexico 915+ 51 45 66 64
Nevada 920+ 54 31 70 67
Papajohns.com Bowl Southern Mississippi 970 81 81 82 83
Cincinnati 941 67 64 75 66
New Orleans Bowl Memphis 954 59 47 90 67
Florida Atlantic 914+ 53 59 44 62
Las Vegas Bowl Brigham Young 945 53 44 61 77
UCLA 931 56 43 70 73
Poinsettia Bowl U.S. Naval Academy 982 95 89 98 98
Utah 949 55 41 81 74

Source: Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport

 

 

Please review our commenting policy here.

Most:

  • Viewed
  • Commented
  • Past:
  • Day
  • Week
  • Month
  • Year
Loading results...
Back to Top