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Thread: 2007: LA colleges about to hit paydirt.

  1. Support 2007: LA colleges about to hit paydirt.


      The formula for funding of Louisiana collegiate athletics will undergo a radical change with a proposal that goes before the State of Louisiana Board of Regents' Finance Committee today.

    If the proposal is approved by the Finance Committee and passed during a Thursday Board of Regents meeting in Baton Rouge, state colleges and universities would have the flexibility to fund significant increases in athletic department budgets.

    "It is a significant change in the amount of support for athletic programs that the board will allow to come from the operating budgets," said deputy commissioner for finance and administration Donald J. Vandal. "It allows for a fairly significant increase."

    The proposal would alter a Board of Regents formula that has been in place since 1989. The major change would create a support figure based on three percent of the university's total overall budget, along with an increase in percentage support for scholarship funding.

    For UL, one of the schools supporting the proposal, the formula change would increase the maximum state support allowed for athletics for the 2007-08 fiscal year from approximately $3.16 million to approximately $6.5 million. Vandal said the increase would be phased in over a two-year period.

    That would boost UL's overall athletic budget from the $8 million range to nearly $11.5 million, putting the Cajun program more in line with most members of the Sun Belt Conference. In 2005, the most recent year where numbers are available, Sun Belt athletic budgets ranged from approximately $6.7 million at UL Monroe to approximately $14.5 million at Florida Atlantic.

    "We did some analysis over quite a while, looking at conferences that our schools participate in," Vandal said. "The evidence is pretty clear that we've had a more restrictive policy on athletic spending and that's kept them below other schools in most of their conferences. For the most part they're way behind, so we thought it was appropriate to go to some adjustments."

    UL president Ray Authement would not comment on specifics of the proposal, but did say he was confident about its approval during Thursday's 9 a.m. Board of Regents meeting. Today's Finance Committee meeting is set for 10:30 a.m.

    "All of the presidents were asked for comments and some adjustments were made," Authement said. "What's taking shape is almost exactly what we recommended. We think what we're proposing is very satisfactory."

    Since 1989 the Board of Regents' funding for athletics has consisted of scholarship support and base support. Scholarship support includes a maximum number of scholarships in each division - NCAA Division I-A, Division I-AA, Division I-AAA, junior colleges and NAIA. The formula funded that number of scholarships at 75 percent of the statewide scholarship average. For the 2007-08 fiscal year, scholarship support for I-A schools was set at just over $1.5 million.

    The base support began with a $1 million figure in 1989-90 for I-A schools, $900,000 for I-AA schools and a lesser amount for other divisions. Those figures were designed to inflate each year based on either the Consumer Price Index for inflation or the state's total higher education budget increase. The 2007-08 base support for I-A schools was capped at just over $1.65 million.

    The proposal up for adoption would increase the scholarship support from 75 percent to 100 percent, an increase of just over $500,000 for I-A schools, and would allow base support at three percent of a school's total operating budget.

    In UL's case, the university's overall operating budget is approximately $150 million, meaning that the school could put three percent of that figure - approximately $4.5 million - from its operating budget into the athletic program.

    "The two elements that create funding haven't changed," said UL interim athletic director David Walker.

    Vandal said the 1989 policies were put in place at a time of severe budget problems in the state, to quell concerns that too much of the budget was being moved to athletics. In essence, the policy replaced the use of student fees for athletics, which Vandal said only disguised the use of operating budgets for athletics.

    "Our policy was very clear and open," he said. "We've tinkered in the margins with the policy over the years, but we didn't step back to see how it was working. We've had several requests to take a look at it. The truth of the matter is that over the last 10 years the state education budget has grown and athletics hasn't had the benefit of that growth over that time."

    Vandal said that his office has received several positive responses from state college presidents, but because of a quick turnaround with the proposal he has not had much input from board members.

    "We'll see how the board responds," he said. "But I think part of the justification is that we've had a fairly restrictive policy for 18 years and our schools have been constrained by that."

    The rest of the story



    Dan McDonald
    dmcdonald@theadvertiser.com



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    Default Re: LA colleges about to hit paydirt


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    Default Re: LA colleges about to hit paydirt

    About damn time...


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    Just1More's Avatar
    Just1More is offline Ragin Cajuns of Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns Greatest Fan Ever
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    Default Re: LA colleges about to hit paydirt

    This is very good news. The incremental amount is huge. Base costs absorb the majority of the existing money. An increase of this magnitude is astronomical in its effect. If used wisely, the additional funds also create a private funding springboard effect. No school that I am aware of could potentially take a dollar in state funding, and yield an investment result more than UL.

    An analogy I use is that we have the most fertile soil around, but are limited in the seeds we are alotted. 95% of the existing harvest goes toward paying the bills. With a slight percentage increase in seed, our produce yield will grow and replenish at a staggering rate... far beyond that of others.


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    Default Re: LA colleges about to hit paydirt

    Quote Originally Posted by Just1More
    An analogy I use is that we have the most fertile soil around, but are limited in the seeds we are alotted. 95% of the existing harvest goes toward paying the bills. With a slight percentage increase in seed, our produce yield will grow and replenish at a staggering rate... far beyond that of others. _
    Love it cause now we can plow.

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    Default Re: LA colleges about to hit paydirt

    Quote Originally Posted by AboveAverage
    Love it cause now we can plow.
    Very good news and all of this being pushed by that athletics hating Dr. Authement. This is great news for UL.

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    Default Re: LA colleges about to hit paydirt

    will this help find an athletic director though?


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    Default Re: LA colleges about to hit paydirt

    Quote Originally Posted by anhil8tor
    will this help find an athletic director though?
    we have an athletic director....?

    Z.

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    Default Re: LA colleges about to hit paydirt

    I have no idea how the committee is put together, but it makes me wonder if the committee is set up like the group that's been fighting UL's name change. How many LSU alumni are on the State of Louisiana Board of Regents' Finance Committee? If it goes through, then I can assume that it's not a biased decision.

    Just a thought. I may be way off base.


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    Default Re: LA colleges about to hit paydirt

    I have no idea how the committee is put together, but it makes me wonder if the committee is set up like the group that's been fighting UL's name change. How many LSU alumni are on the State of Louisiana Board of Regents' Finance Committee? If it goes through, then I can assume that it's not a biased decision.

    Just a thought. I may be way off base.


  11. This is Upsetting Funding proposal shot down


      Hold up on all those plans for increased collegiate athletic funding in Louisiana.
    In a move that surprised university administrative and athletic personnel across the state - as well as staffers for the State of Louisiana Board of Regents - the board's Finance Committee did not approve a proposed policy for revisions in state fund usage in athletic programs during a Wednesday meeting.

    The committee had been expected to approve a proposal that would have given state colleges and universities more flexibility in the funding of athletic programs, and pass it on to the state Board of Regents for its regularly-scheduled 9 a.m. meeting today in Baton Rouge.

    Instead, the proposal was not referred out of committee, and it will not be one of the reports and recommendations from standing committees during today's meeting.

    The rest of the story



    Dan McDonald
    dmcdonald@theadvertiser.com



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    Support Re: LA colleges about to hit paydirt. NOT!!!

    I wonder if they were swayed by a bombardment of negative phone calls?


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    Default Re: Funding proposal shot down

    Quote Originally Posted by NewsCopy
    cough...cough.."scr*w job"...cough...cough...

    Seriously!!! did anyone really not see this coming????

    Z.

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    Default Re: Funding proposal shot down

    Quote Originally Posted by Zeebart21
    cough...cough.."scr*w job"...cough...cough...

    Seriously!!! did anyone really not see this coming????

    Z.

    This really stinks. You would think that all the state colleges want this to pass. They say it could pass later this summer so keep hope alive. Zeebart I would think you would be more optimistic. Maybe try the green apple kool aid?

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    Default Re: Funding proposal shot down

    Quote Originally Posted by Zeebart21
    cough...cough.."scr*w job"...cough...cough...

    Seriously!!! did anyone really not see this coming????

    Z.
    Sarcasm meter on.

    It is obvious that blame lies with the Advertiser. If they would have only waited a day or so to print a story extolling the benefits of the new rule to UL.....

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    Default Re: LA colleges about to hit paydirt. NOT !!!

    This state will never change its way of doing things and for that reason that is why we fall behind every other state.


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    Default Re: LA colleges about to hit paydirt. NOT !!!

    Not even a hint of why the Finance Committee did not consider the proposal! Even if they had, I would have had to look at it with jaundiced eyes!!


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    Default Re: LA colleges about to hit paydirt. NOT !!!

    This stinks of purple and dingy yellow. LSU is already noticing how succesfull we are now and we have little to no money. Lets not give us a raise in budget because then we would challenge their stranglehold on the state. God forbid we have more than one top notch university in Louisiana. This is why I HATE LSU. They are the reason this state is stuck in the dark ages. This beauracratic nonsense that runs through the state legislature has got to go. Karmic backlash is gonna hit LSU really hard one day, and man Im gonna dance in the streets when it does.


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    Default Re: LA colleges about to hit paydirt. NOT !!!

    Quote Originally Posted by cajunhawk
    _ This stinks of purple and dingy yellow. LSU is already noticing how succesfull we are now and we have little to no money. Lets not give us a raise in budget because then we would challenge their stranglehold on the state. God forbid we have more than one top notch university in Louisiana. This is why I HATE LSU. They are the reason this state is stuck in the dark ages. This beauracratic nonsense that runs through the state legislature has got to go. Karmic backlash is gonna hit LSU really hard one day, and man Im gonna dance in the streets when it does. _
    Karmic backlash? I am an igmoramus. Please, explain.

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    Default Re: LA colleges about to hit paydirt. NOT !!!

    You know, listening to Jay talk about it yesterday, I thought "no way, that's too good to be true." We would've raised our athletic budget by nearly 50% and it was something that "everybody expects to pass." Guess it was too good to be true. And I can't say I'm surprised, just a lot disappointed. Like that boyfriend who takes his girlfriend back after she cheats and promises to never do it again, and then a week later you walk in on her in the act. You're not shocked or incredibly hurt, just a little apathetic. Guess we can get back on the horse and hope that they revisit and pass the measure in August.


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