A Texas A&M Aggies fan takes a photo of the exterior of Kyle Field before the start of the Texas A&M Aggies and the Ball State Cardinals game at Kyle Field on September 12, 2015 in College Station, Texas. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)

BEVO BEAT Football

The wealthiest athletic department in America is… Texas A&M?!

Aggies received a tidal wave of money to renovate Kyle Field, and their status at No. 1 may fall next year

Posted July 6th, 2017

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The wealthiest college athletic program in America continues to be… wait, what?

Texas A&M emerged as the No. 1 cash cow in revenue for the second straight year in USA Today’s annual collection of revenues and expenses among all major colleges and universities.

The Aggies reported a staggering sum of about $194.4 million for the 2015-16 athletic year. That’s actually an increase of almost $1.8 million from the previous year when A&M also took the top spot.

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Poor ol’ Texas, hat in hand, came in second with a paltry $188 million in revenue, a total first reported by the American-Statesman in January.

So what gives? Have the Aggies suddenly become flush with all that SEC cash thanks to the “100-year decision?” Well, yes and no.

The thrust of A&M’s revenue total was an influx of money raised for Kyle Field improvements, a construction project triggered by the move to the SEC. USA Today reporter George Schroeder noted that A&M’s revenue total could drop by $40 million or more next year without a major capital campaign.

That would put Texas back in the driver’s seat, financially speaking, both state and nationwide.

The Longhorns reported $171.4 million in expenses on its annual report to the U.S. Dept. of Education. However, the athletic department transferred an additional $10.1 million to the academic side, bringing the total expense number to almost $181.5 million.

Ohio State was second nationally in expenses ($166.8 million) and Michigan was third ($157.9 million).

Contact Brian Davis at 512-445-3957. Email bdavis@statesman.com.

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