SEC dominates Forbes’ most valuable college programs

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Forbes.com valuates college football programs every year, and it’s no surprise the SEC once again dominates the list. In fact, seven of the top 10 most valuable programs in the country live in the SEC.

Here is a snippet on the weighted scoring system:

Our college football valuations use a weighted scoring system to measure the value created for four key areas. The four components, in order of weight, consist of each team’s 1. value to its university (football profit contributed to academic programming, including football scholarships), 2. value to its athletic department (football profit that supports other athletic initiatives), 3. value to its conference (distribution of bowl game revenue) and 4. value to the surrounding community (estimated spending by visitors on days of home games).

You can view 1-20 here, but the SEC is below.

4. LSU Tigers
Current Value: $102 million
One-Year Change in Value: 6%
Football Revenue: $69 million
Football Profit: $45 million
Conference: SEC
Head Coach: Les Miles

LSU remains the SEC’s most valuable team, which is quite the feat considering that the conference holds seven of the top ten spots. The Tigers may have lost last year’s national championship to Alabama, but going to the game as the SEC’s first team to a BCS bowl earned the conference more than $22 million.

5. Georgia Bulldogs
Current Value: $99 million
One-Year Change in Value: 10%
Football Revenue: $75 million
Football Profit: $52 million
Conference: SEC
Head Coach: Mark Richt

Georgia’s value to the SEC increased thanks to playing in the Outback Bowl, which brought $3.5 million in bowl revenue into the conference. The Bulldogs may see another bump in revenue next year thanks to hosting the Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate rivalry game against Georgia Tech and playing in the SEC Championship this season.

6. Alabama Crimson Tide
Current Value: $95 million
One-Year Change in Value: 3%
Football Revenue: $82 million
Football Profit: $45 million
Conference: SEC
Head Coach: Nick Saban

The Crimson Tide have won two of the last three BCS championships, and the team will contend for yet another national title this January when it faces off against Notre Dame. Alabama also ranks among the biggest supporters of academic programming. The athletic department contributed more than $5 million back to university initiatives last year.

7. Florida Gators
Current Value: $93 million
One-Year Change in Value: 9%
Football Revenue: $74 million
Football Profit: $51 million
Conference: SEC
Head Coach: Will Muschamp

Florida’s athletic department contributed a whopping $6.4 million to academic programming last year, and the athletic department has been responsible for $60 million in university contributions since 1990. Between that academic funding and football scholarships, the Gators directed more revenue to university spending than any other team on our list from a public university.

8. Auburn Tigers
Current Value: $85 million
One-Year Change in Value: -4%
Football Revenue: $77 million
Football Profit: $44 million
Conference: SEC
Head Coach: Gus Malzahn

The Tigers’ slight decline in value is mostly attributable to lost bowl game revenue. Auburn competed in the Chik-fil-A Bowl last year, and the game’s $3 million conference payout pales in comparison to the $21 million the Tigers generated for its conference by playing in the national championship the previous season.

9. Tennessee Volunteers
Current Value: $84 million
One-Year Change in Value: 2%
Football Revenue: $55 million
Football Profit: $35 million
Conference: SEC
Head Coach: Butch Jones

Tennessee’s athletic department has traditionally contributed around $6 million annually to academic programs. Those payouts have halted, however, as the athletic department attempts to stabilize its budget and pay for former head coach Derek Dooley’s contract buyout.

10. Arkansas Razorbacks
Current Value: $83 million
One-Year Change in Value: -7%
Football Revenue: $64 million
Football Profit: $40 million
Conference: SEC
Head Coach: Bret Bielema

The Razorbacks played in the Cotton Bowl last year which, while respectable, had a significantly smaller payout than the Sugar Bowl it played in the previous season. A disastrous year on the field in 2012 will likely cause another dip next year.

17. South Carolina Gamecocks
Current Value: $67 million
One-Year Change in Value: 5%
Football Revenue: $48 million Football Profit: $26 million
Conference: SEC
Head Coach: Steve Spurrier

The Gamecocks played in the Capital One Bowl last year, which garnered over $4.5 million for the SEC – the biggest payday of any non-BCS bowl. South Carolina also hosted its season-ending rivalry game against Clemson last year, attracting roughly $8 million in visitor spending in a single weekend.

Photo Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

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