TBJ Reports NCSU lags behind on recruiting spending

It’s really no surprise to most of us here at Statefans that the Triangle Business Journal’s Chris Baysden is reporting that NC State spends much less on recruiting than our rivals down the road. In football the difference is simply (and sadly) astronomical. Here is a link to Mr. Baysden’s article: link.

The report sets out information gained from perusing the public records associated with public institutions. Private schools such as Wake Forest and Duke need not make public all of their financial records, but upon request Duke offered some insight into what its programs spend.

In 2008 NC State’s recruiting budget was $275k on football and $125 on men’s basketball.

UNC’s budget expenses totaled $629k on football and $175k on men’s basketball.

The league averages, according to an anonymous survey, were $350k (FB) and $133k (MBB).

When asked, Duke reported that it spends more than the league average on football.

Since Butch Davis has been in Chapel Hill, UNC’s budget for football recruiting has increased 24% up from $506k in 2006-07. The really sad part? Reports indicate that our trend is heading in the opposite direction. TOB’s budget was $325k last year, but has been decreased to $275k for 2009-10.

In response to being shown the huge discrepancy, NC State’s Associate Athletic for Business Operations Diane Moose had this to say: “I’m sure they have their reasons, but Jiminy George that’s a lot of money.”

Reasons? It doesn’t take someone tabbed with the label “Associate Athletic Director” to give a response that is something more than a restatement of the obvious and does not include the words “Jiminy” or “George”. The first is certainly a dedication to excel on the playing field. The other, as has been so often highlighted here on SFN, is the collateral effect of easy marketing for a University with a successful football and basketball program. Ms. Moose, in her defense, is undoubtedly acting on the behest of Mr. Fowler and thus should, perhaps, not be held personally accountable for the cuts that could and likely will seriously effect our ability to compete for recruits. This is Lee Fowler’s modus operandi, and we can definitely see how are coaches are more than fed up with it. The man who so often likes to take credit for building our facilities and running our athletic department in the black fails to self-report that he’s doing so by running our programs into the ground.

The easy opposition to this idea is that TOB has beaten Davis three years running on the field. And that certainly is not lost on us. However, it goes more to the idea that there’s an utter and complete refusal to give the support necessary to our programs so that they can be competitive on the field. I’m picturing a few scenes from Major League with guys beat up and injured in tin wash tubs with 1968 10 h.p. Evinrudes attached to them.

Facilities, you see, are just a slight part of the equation that equals success. Dave Telep is quoted in the TBJ article as saying: ““If you don’t have players, you’re at a decided disadvantage.” This is certainly something all of us who follow NC State sports regularly over a long period of time know all too well. It’s the obvious inability of our administration to understand this concept that remains quite baffling. When the Romans built the Coliseum, they didn’t stage the gladiator games with blind men and lepers. Our coaches have been put at an obvious disadvantage, and it’s to their credit that they’ve been as successful as they have. If you look at discussions of this past football season, you’ll repeatedly see commentary as to the athleticism in relation to our opponents. Keep in mind, we understand this could very well be the result of many, many factors. However, you simply cannot ignore a discrepancy as huge as this and dismiss it as a non-factor in our inability to regularly compete on the field and court.

For crying out loud… even Duke spent more than we did on football recruiting last year. Duke. The school that for the better part of a century fielded a team that drew high school worthy crowds to a less-than-high-school worthy stadium. If there’s ever been a University that has failed to adequately promote and support its football program, it’s Duke.

On the basketball front, Coach Lowe dismissed the discrepancy as a reason to sing the blues. Lowe is quoted as saying: “They allow us to get out and go see just about anybody that we want to see… I don’t see where it’s a disadvantage.” Good for Coach Lowe, but honestly… what would you expect him to say? Also, perhaps the fact that there is no quote from TOB speaks even louder. Obviously the discrepancy in football is the most glaring, and thus the most reasonably harmful to our program.

What does this say about the mindset in our Athletic Department? And more importantly, what does it say about the man who embodies it? How long will butts fill the seats of our wonderful facility if our administration fails to provide our coaches with the ability to put competitive teams on the field? What good is an empty Coliseum?

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54 Responses to TBJ Reports NCSU lags behind on recruiting spending

  1. StateFans 12/07/2009 at 3:13 PM #

    Some would be able to appropriately position recruiting budgets as INVESTING instead of a purely expensed items.

    Is it really surprising to anyone who knows anything about the way that our Department is run that the miser also known as Lee Fowler would not be spending money on recruiting? He doesn’t spend money on anything.

    Most of us would like to know really where all of the money goes? It isn’t like we have a large lease expense with the RBC Center. And, we sell more basketball and football tickets than the majority of our ACC brethren.

    Of course, we clearly don’t max out the money we could make on media rights, preferring to partner with Wolfpack Sports Marketing in a good old boy deal that pays Lee Fowler $75,000 a year for his own show in return for not publicly bidding the extension of the contract.

    Maybe deals like that one are why we annually report such low revenue figures compared to our peers and therefore have less money to re-invest in our programs.

  2. WolfQuacker 12/07/2009 at 3:21 PM #

    It makes sense Lowe might not have as much of an issue, given the number of recruits he will be courting versus that which the FB program needs to visit. Maybe some of that money goes to Lee’s lake house fuh-cility improvements in case of another on the job meltdown.

  3. whitefang 12/07/2009 at 3:26 PM #

    If this is a true “apples to apples” comparison (I know sometimes various athletic dollars get accounted for under different categories in different schools), then this is a sad story to tell. Certainly you could use the argument that “we are getting more bang for the buck” with our recruits. But over the long term we have to be able to invest the money needed to get the players that win games and championships. More critical in football IMO due to the sheer volume needed.

  4. 4in12 12/07/2009 at 3:42 PM #

    We only spent one hundred and twenty-five dollars on basketball recruiting? That explains a lot!

  5. wolfpack74 12/07/2009 at 3:45 PM #

    Not to keep beating the dead horse, but I know Fowler is not going to change. When will pressure start being applied to other people in charge, i.e. Bobby Purcell? He’s the head of the club, he helps control the purse strings. This is getting way past sad! I stopped giving to the cub, tickets, etc. after Chuck’s 2nd year because I saw where the program was heading. It’s unfortunate where we are today, and it’s sad to say that the last AD we had to truely evaluate coaching staffs was Willis Case. I loved Jimmy V, even shot a commercial with him in 1983 but didn’t have to evaluate too many staffs back in his era.

  6. wolfpack74 12/07/2009 at 3:51 PM #

    On a side note, look at UVA they want to improve their programs. Haven’t had a lot of success on the hardwood since Terry Holland and Jeff Jones. They gave some coaches a chance and move on. It seems they waited a little long for Groh but seems they made a good choice with London (great recruiter in the Tidewater area). If he gets that going UVA will be on the rise and the Hokies on a down slide. I like what there AD is doing just wish we could do the same. Sorry for the ramble!

  7. fvpackman 12/07/2009 at 4:06 PM #

    I don’t know alot about the 2 sports mentioned…But in Baseball we are so far behind it isn’t funny…FSU Clemson GT all have travel budgets that are larger then our entire budget….If you want sports on the cheap…Then Lee Fowler is the man….


  8. Sam92 12/07/2009 at 4:12 PM #

    yes, it’s sad. and the responsibility for the poor budgeting rightly rests with the athletic director

    but what can we do? i’m honestly ready to give up – because the board of trustees and the chancellor are quite happy with the job lee fowler is doing! it makes me sick

  9. wolfmanmat 12/07/2009 at 4:26 PM #

    We can’t just blame Lee Fowler. Really, he works with the money he is given. Now, I am NOT defending him, because he has made a mess of his opportunities, but we need to start with the board and the chancellor. They control the funds. Fowler works with a set number. Now, he may spend it in ways that we don’t like and he may do a really piss poor job of budgeting, but he doesn’t control the amount of money he gets.

    SFN: OF COURSE he has an impact on his overall revenues.

    If he hadn’t sold our media rights on the cheap so he could get his $75k annual kickback, then we’d have more annual revenue and a higher budget.

    If he had the ability to create more winning programs, then we would make more money in media, in licensing, in merchandise, in ticket prices, and even from the ACC revenue splits.

    What do you think the value of a winning program is on a shoe & apparel contract? Perhaps if he could create and lead a successful enterprise, we would sign a deal that would create a huge windfall of revenue while simultaneously reducing our expenses on equipment.

    If he didn’t allow the women’s basketball program to run roughshod over him in the past, then he would have had less expenses and therefore more money to apply to other things.

    If he had invested more in the Doak Field renovation instead of going on the cheap, then perhaps we would have a better team and have hosted more regionals (and made more money in the process).

    The list goes on and on and on…

    His behavior and failures most definitely impact the size of his budget because it reduces the amount of revenue coming in.

  10. GAWolf 12/07/2009 at 4:30 PM #

    FV: I’ve written another piece about the already outdated Doak renovation. I’m waiting on some more information to publish it. That was outdated before it was completed.

  11. packof81 12/07/2009 at 4:44 PM #

    “If you don’t have players, you’re at a decided disadvantage.”

    This problem is almost as old as the shortage of on campus parking.

  12. fvpackman 12/07/2009 at 4:51 PM #

    With the Jumbotron finally going in at Doak…and the repairs made to stop the club house from flooding over the last year…well over 1 mil has been spent in the last 2 years on Doak and it’s not but 7 years old…Add in what is slated for tennis and I think you can see they were done on the cheap and are having to be repaired and redone when they are less then 10 years old….Look for the same thing at Softball and Soccer a couple years from now.

  13. theghost 12/07/2009 at 5:36 PM #

    what do these numbers translate to? Maybe chase 3 kids per one scholarship – anybody have a sense? At 3 to 1, that’s 15 basketball recruits, 75 football? So, spending less than $10K in basketball, less than $4K in football? I would guess there’s some waste in the unc budget, b/c I’m sure those holes probably stay at the ritz and have organic bathwater imported from France. I do appreciate a little responsible spending, but still, no reason to be behind the league average, esp. in basketball. Wonder how much is travel v. entertainment? The NCAA gestapo keeps a pretty tight reign on some of those expenses, I would imagine.

  14. GAWolf 12/07/2009 at 5:54 PM #

    Well… now that I think about this… it’s really a non-issue.

    Going back to past SFN articles… if you over-recruit by double the allotted scholarship players, then it goes to reason you’d spend twice as much money!!!

  15. durhamwolf19 12/07/2009 at 5:55 PM #

    It is really frustrating with Fowler as AD. His comments about the money we received after the U2 payout – “that’s a chunk of change”. The guy embarasses us everytime he opens his mouth and it appears Diane Moose has taken his lead. We are not giving our coaches the chance to compete. Wonder how much of the payouts each year are allocated to the mortgage and upkeep of the house at Lake Gaston.

  16. Gene 12/07/2009 at 6:19 PM #

    How does this translate to non-revenue sports? As much as we focus on football and men’s basketball, UNC-Ch mops the floor with us in damn near all non-revenue team sports, as well.

    I wonder if they are outspending us on non-revenue sports, like baseball, for example where they’ve gotten much better than us in a short period of time.

    I’m not going to bother mentioning something like women’s soccer, in which the UNC-Ch program is more dominant than words can describe.

  17. RegularExpression 12/07/2009 at 6:20 PM #

    I honestly thought that Diane Moose’s quote was an attempted parody by GAWolf. I had to google Diane Moose to make sure she was a real person. The fact that she is so stunned by a peer institution’s recruiting budget tells me that she is pretty insulated. I saw the discrepancy and and was not surprised one bit.

  18. StateFans 12/07/2009 at 6:22 PM #

    FV’s points are right on the money and would be a perfect indicator of Fowler’s lack of real-world experience and true business acumen.

    He’s never had to produce any real-world-deliverable or actually own any project for a profit-centric entity and shareholders so he doesn’t understand the impact of investing into a project to get it done the right way the first time.

  19. Dr. BadgerPack 12/07/2009 at 6:32 PM #

    In addition to media rights, etc. on the cheap, I am wondering if we are now entering the reduced phases of basketball revenue from the NCAA tournament. My understanding is these shares are split by the conference, and a ‘share’ is one per team per round of advancement in the tournament. With recent down conference performance in the NCAA tournament, and depending on the value of a share (should be pretty nice, given what the NCAA collects on that thing), conference teams could be seeing a significantly smaller cut than 4-5 years ago.

    Combine that with Fowler’s, err, business sense and you can quickly see where the day-to-day operations would suffer some slashes.

  20. harrisek 12/07/2009 at 7:07 PM #

    With the tend toward spending less, are we the next Hofstra?

  21. imawolf 12/07/2009 at 7:08 PM #

    Wolfpackers,I have an answer for all of this, lets hire Mrs. Easley, halve her salary and transfer the rest for the Marine’s use in recruiting.

  22. SuperStuff 12/07/2009 at 8:15 PM #

    The price of weed at UNC-CH has gone up people. They smokem’ big peace pipes over at the hill.

  23. howlie 12/07/2009 at 9:38 PM #

    Luxury facilities with no recruiting budget.

    Like putting bicycle wheels on a Porshe. Classy vehicle there, Jed. Tie a racoon tail on the antenna while you’re at it.

  24. highstick 12/07/2009 at 10:09 PM #

    Makes me want to puke all over the Bell Tower for any State fan to defend that work of garbage called Fowler. Have you been smoking more weed than I ever knew existed at State!

  25. Octavian 12/07/2009 at 10:49 PM #

    Can we somehow anoint Jim Goodknight with a permanent seat on our BOT? All this madness…only his vision and an infusion of cold hard cash can save us.

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