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Friday, January 28, 2011
Updated: February 2, 11:41 AM ET
Bang for the Buck, college basketball

By Patrick Hruby
Page 2

Bang for the Buck

All this week, Page 2 looks at the athletic world the way financial analysts look at corporations. Which teams are maximizing their returns? Which clubs are woefully inefficient?

In short, who's getting the biggest -- and smallest -- bang for their bucks?

To answer the above, we're comparing teams by a simple, bottom-line metric: Player payroll dollars spent per regular-season victory. Using the most recent and accurate salary figures available, we're also examining which clubs have been penny-wise and which have been pound-foolish.


Page 2's "Bang for the Buck" payroll analysis series:

Monday: NFL  |  Tuesday: NBA  |  Wednesday: MLB
Thursday: NHL  |  Friday: College football  |  Friday: College basketball



Below, Page 2 concludes its series by looking at the final pre-NCAA tournament Top 25 men's college basketball teams. We used the most recent athletic department budget information provided by the Department of Education's online Equity in Athletics Data Analysis Cutting Tool to analyze the 2009-10 season.

Note: College basketball Top 25 determined by ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll.


The top five


1. Northern Iowa

Expenses
Victories
Cost per win
$1.97 million
28
$70,000

Fun fact: Lost in NCAA Sweet 16 to Michigan State, which spent roughly $6 million more on its basketball budget.


2. New Mexico

Expenses
Victories
Cost per win
$2.51 million
29
$87,000

Fun fact: School reportedly expects current basketball revenue to offset athletic program debt due to football losses.


3. Temple

Expenses
Victories
Cost per win
$2.86 million
29
$99,000

Fun fact: Temple's basketball program did not turn a profit.


4. Butler

Expenses
Victories
Cost per win
$2.82 million
28
$101,000

Fun fact: School's athletic department spent $73,087 on recruiting men's athletes for all sports; NCAA title game opponent Duke spent $923,539 on the same.


5. Brigham Young

Expenses
Victories
Cost per win
$3.59 million
29
$124,000

Fun fact: Total basketball budget is less than reported salaries of Mike Krzyzewski and John Calipari.


The bottom five


25. Duke

Expenses
Victories
Cost per win
$12.23 million
29
$424,000

Fun fact: National champion spent more on basketball than 12 BCS conference schools spent on football.


24. Kentucky

Expenses
Victories
Cost per win
$11.57 million
32
$362,000

Fun fact: Wildcats spent $660 on basketball per every undergraduate student -- far less than Duke ($1,192).


23. Michigan State

Expenses
Victories
Cost per win
$8.25 million
24
$344,000

Fun fact: Though Tom Izzo is school's highest-paid coach, football team's profit ($26.99 million) dwarfed that of basketball team ($7.89 million).


22. Kansas

Expenses
Victories
Cost per win
$10.98 million
32
$343,000

Fun fact: Coach Bill Self reportedly earned almost $3.4 million.


21. Wisconsin

Expenses
Victories
Cost per win
$7.54 million
23
$328,000

Fun fact: Game-day operating costs ($1.23 million) were significantly less than those of Big Ten rival Michigan State ($2.03 million).


Rest of the Top 25



Other notables


Patrick Hruby is a freelance writer and ESPN.com contributor. Contact him at PatrickHruby.net.


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