By: Ben Abrams
The first week of May will be a very important one for GPC.
Students will be taking their finals to wrap up the spring semester and the regular season for spring sports will conclude.
The big difference between the two events is that classes will resume in August, but sports will not.
The end of the semester will likely be met with relief by most students but disappointment by the athletes and supporters of the school’s teams.
As many students know, there will be no intercollegiate sports at GPC for the 2015-2016 academic year as a result of the planned consolidation with Georgia State which will be completed in 2016.
Athletes and coaches feel that the school administration could have shown the courtesy to let everyone in the athletic department know about the sudden changes in a timelier manner.
People who were affected by the announcement could have more time to make their plans for the near future.
The surprising and sudden end to GPC’s 50 year tradition of athletics is a sad and unfortunate story.
Surrounding the negativity of the situation there may be a financial silver lining for a college that will have no athletic programs next school year.
College athletic programs, especially the ones that participate in football and men’s basketball, are advertised as big time money makers. However, this does not mean that these schools earn big money.
According to Nancy Madsen of the Richmond Times-Dispatch for Politfact.com, the NCAA released a Revenue and Expenses Report for D-I college athletics programs from 2004 to 2013.
In the report the NCAA provides data that showed that out of all the sports played in the 123 schools that make the FBS subdivision only two sports in the 2013 fiscal year made an overall profit.
Football with a median profit of over $3 million and men’s basketball which netted a median of $340,000.
The median losses for athletic departments across FBS schools in 2013 was $11.6 million.
The average revenues made by athletic departments rose by 3.2 percent but expenses also increased by 10.6 percent.
Twenty out of the 123 FBS schools made an average profit of $8.4 million while the remaining 103 schools suffered losses of $14.9 million.
When schools from the Football Championship Subdivision are included in the number of D-I schools making or losing money, only 20 out of 249 schools in D-I made any revenue from their athletic department.
About 92 percent of the schools lost money from their athletic departments.
According to data provided from the Office of Postsecondary Education, GPC did earn revenue from its athletics programs with a profit of $12,175 in the 2013 fiscal year.
With no sports next year at GPC, the school can save money that will not be spent to keep an athletic department going.
The school may not have to pay the salaries and wages for the coaches or the staff who’ve worked for the athletic department. They can also save money by no longer needing to pay for expenses like equipment, uniforms, or transportation costs for the teams.
The downside is that the school will lose some if not all coaches, and the coaches have to start over at a new place with a new job. Student-athletes also lose the opportunity to play ball without the worries of paying for an education.
The chances of them finding a similar opportunity are up in the air after this semester.
The bonds that were created between the coaches and players as well as teammates are lost too.
The outlook for the void of GPC sports is that there might be a bright side for the finances of GPC with athletics.
The financial gain will not fill the void that is left when Jaggy and his teams take their final bows.