- Darren Rovell, ESPN.com Sports Business reporter
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Florida State's BCS title paid dividends, as the school generated enough licensing revenue to vault into the 10 highest royalties this past school year among schools represented by the Collegiate Licensing Company.
The company, a division of IMG College, released its annual list of the top 75 schools in royalties of the $4.59 billion retail market for collegiate-licensed merchandise from July 1, 2013, to June 30, 2014.
Florida State moved from No. 21 in royalties during the 2012-13 season to No. 8 this past season, as Seminoles sales increased 21 percent in the first six months of 2014 versus the same time period in 2013.
The school charged a 15 percent royalty to any licensee that made national championship gear. Exact figures for schools were not released, however FSU director of trademark licensing Sherri Dye said the school's merchandise royalties were $4.58 million this past school year.
The amount represents a 49.8 percent increase over royalties from the 2012-13 school year ($3.06 million) and the first time the Seminoles crossed the $4 million royalty barrier.
Men's and women's basketball titles for UConn also helped retail sales, although the Huskies' jump was much more modest, from No. 53 in 2012-13 to No. 47 last year.
Despite a disappointing 8-5 season on the gridiron, Texas finished atop CLC's client list for the ninth consecutive year. Alabama remained at No. 2, while Michigan leapfrogged Notre Dame to take the third spot.
Also getting into the top 10 in merchandise royalties was Texas A&M, which, thanks to Johnny Manziel, jumped from the 19th spot to No. 12 in 2012-13 and three more spots to No. 9 this past year.
Among the top 15, the largest drop in royalties was, not surprisingly, Arkansas, which went 3-9 and 0-8 in the SEC. This year, the school was No. 14 on CLC's royalty list, down from No. 10 the year before.
With Jameis Winston back for another season, Florida State is counting on the Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback to continue to boost merchandise revenues. The school is selling his No. 5 jersey in home, away and alternate black, offering both replica ($89.95) and limited ($134.95) models.
The apparel licensee that paid the most in royalties to schools was Nike, for the 11th time in the past 13 years. The most royalties paid out by a non-apparel licensee was EA Sports, which will disappear from the list as lawsuits and subsequent settlements have stalled future plans to restart its popular college football video game.
CLC represents the licensing interests of nearly 200 colleges and universities, including 68 percent of FBS schools. The company does not represent Ohio State, Oregon or USC.
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