Friday, August 20, 2010

Louisiana Tech and the WAC- Myth of Travel Expenses

These are 2004/2005 numbers. I have no reason to believe that any considerable difference as to percentage has changed.

The problems in the WAC have brought forth the issue of travel expenses for Louisiana Tech and it's sports program. Needless to say Louisiana Tech being on the far eastern side of the conference travel expense is a huge item. I hear all the time- TECH needs to get out the WAC to save money on Travel Expenses!!

However if Louisiana Tech went to the Sunbelt would there be savings in this expense? MAYBE but not nearly as much as people might think.

The following info can be found here (Link is fixed)

The Louisiana Tech budget for travel expenses was $1,174,237 . To break that down
Men's Basketball$100,111
Women's Basketball$131,013

Now let us look at the Sunbelt teams.
ULM has travel expenses of $755,764

ULL the other in state school of the Sunbelt Conference has travel expenses of $1,107,359

Troy State has travel expenses of $1,199,954

Western Kentucky has travel expenses of $1,484,923

Florida Atlantic has travel Expenses of $1,348,901

Florida International has travel expenses of $1,207,820

Arkansas at Little Rock which does not have a Football Team has travel expenses of $462,459.
This school also fields less teams in other sports than Louisiana Tech. However the travel expense for mens and womens BB are similar. Those travel expenses are $116,296 $79,998 .

For some reason the expenses and revenue statements of other Sunbelt Schools are not available at the link.

As to ULM which has the lowest travel expenses of the sunbelt lets look at those numbers.

Men's BB-$36,231
Women's BB-$33,229

Now I am not sure what is going here with these numbers. Something seems off. Please note their expenses for Men's BB and Women's BB are nowhere near the travel expenses of other sunbelt schools.. However note the Football expenses are similar to Tech.

So regardless of the question if Louisiana Tech should go back to the Sunbelt, any argument based on travel expenses seems to be a non starter. There is really no considerable difference.

Update- For the record like many Tech Supporters I oppose any move to the Snbelt at this time. Such a move would be done under panic. Also we have just seen round I of conference realignment. We have no idea what the Sunbelt will look like in 2 to 3 years.

Update II-
Let address this-

Contagion has to have officials at Louisiana Tech seriously asking themselves: "Why are we still in the WAC?"
Louisiana Tech is in Ruston. Its nearest WAC competitor is New Mexico State, in Las Cruces.
Ruston is closer to Sioux Falls, South Dakota than it is to Las Cruces. Ruston is closer to Bangor, Maine than it is to Fresno. According to "USA Today," Louisiana Tech spent 16% of its 2008-09 athletic budget on team travel. So far, I've found no other D-I school whose travel budget comes close to eating 16% of its annual budget. Louisiana Tech's 2008-09 athletic budget was only $16 million. The school simply can't afford to remain in the WAC. It's over. All that remains is determining when Louisiana Tech lands somewhere else

That is besides the point. The issue there is the overall Tech Athletic budget and for years the lack of cultivating direct alumni support for the program. So the overall budget is low because of that. That is a whole separate problem. See graphs here. That as we see is starting to change in a dramatic way. THANK GOD. Evidence of that can be seen in the last two years as Tech Alumni have contributed to needed Capital Improvements and also that Tech is preparing to build a 20 million dollar sports facility.

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