- Associated Press - Friday, June 10, 2016

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - A Wisconsin regent questioned Friday whether it’s worth continuing athletics at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in the face of a massive deficit.

Regent Tim Higgins challenged UW-Milwaukee Athletic Director Amanda Braun after a presentation of a report on Panther sports that she gave to regents on the school’s campus. Higgins pointed out to her that the athletic department finished the year that ended on June 30, 2015, nearly $11 million in the red. According to the report, the deficit began building around 2000 due to the rising overall costs of Division 1 athletics.

UW-Milwaukee athletics are heavily subsidized by student fees; they made up more than two-thirds of the department’s revenue in fiscal year 2015 and are projected to make up a little less than two-thirds of revenue in the upcoming fiscal year.

Higgins asked Braun how she can justify continuing sports at the school. Braun seemed taken aback by the question, initially responding that she believes student-athletes make a positive impact on the university.

At Regent Gerald Whitburn’s prodding, she added that her department faces no serious NCAA sanctions and the deficit is no longer growing. According to the report, the athletic department finished fiscal year 2015 with a net balance of $604,400 and should finish 2016 about $107,284 to the good.

She also said that the department has a plan to eliminate the deficit. According to the report, the plan calls for balancing the budget on an annual basis for multiple years.

The regents took no action and moved on to other agenda items.

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide