Despite the fact the NCAA likes to uphold illusions that its merely sanctioning amateur athletics, there's no doubt that college football is a big business. In 2009, the most recent year for which figures are available, all Division 1-A teams combined brought in an astounding $2.5 billion.
So which Florida schools are making the most off their football teams?
The Memphis Business Journal has put together a database of each team's income and expenses for 2009. Here's the breakdown for all seven Division 1-A schools in Florida:
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It should come as little surprise that in 2009 the Gators pulled in so much more than their Sunshine State rivals. For one, they were coming off a national championship. Plus they're a part of the very lucrative SEC.
It shouldn't come as a surprise either that recent national champions are among the highest earning teams. Florida came in sixth overall, and teams such as Alabama, Auburn, and LSU also fill out the top ten. University of Texas is the top earner, with almost $94 million in football revenues in 2009. All of that money hasn't bought them a recent national championship, though.
Meanwhile, lowly Florida Atlantic University, which spends more than twice on football than it takes in, was the lowest earning football team in Division 1-A in 2009 (to be fair, numbers of Air Force and Navy were not available).