College football is big business, with millions of dollars exchanging hands each season. One of the ways schools generate revenue is by scheduling non-conference games against smaller schools willing to travel for a hefty guarantee payment.
If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: Nebraska paid Georgia Southern $1.4 million for their 2021 football matchup.
In this approximately 3000 word article, we’ll dive into the finances behind this game, looking at factors like standard payouts, the importance of home games, and how Guarantee Games benefit Power 5 and Group of 5 schools.
The Importance of Guarantee Games in College Football
Guarantee games play a significant role in the world of college football, providing both financial benefits and opportunities for teams to showcase their talent. These games are typically matchups between teams from different conferences, with one team paying the other to come and play at their home stadium.
Power 5 Conferences Rely on Home Games for Revenue
Power 5 conferences, such as the Big Ten, SEC, ACC, Big 12, and Pac-12, heavily rely on home games for revenue generation. These conferences have large fan bases and stadiums, which allow them to generate substantial ticket sales and merchandise revenue.
By scheduling guarantee games against smaller opponents, they can ensure a home game and maximize their revenue potential.
For example, in the case of Nebraska and Georgia Southern, Nebraska paid Georgia Southern a significant sum to come and play at their home stadium. This not only provided Nebraska with a home game but also attracted fans to fill the stadium, resulting in increased ticket sales, concessions, and merchandise revenue for the university.
Group of 5 Schools Use Guarantee Games to Fund Athletic Departments
On the other hand, Group of 5 schools, which includes conferences like the American Athletic Conference, Conference USA, and the Sun Belt Conference, often use guarantee games as a way to fund their athletic departments.
These schools may not have the same level of financial resources as their Power 5 counterparts, so guarantee games provide them with an opportunity to secure a substantial payday.
By accepting a guarantee game against a Power 5 opponent, Group of 5 schools can receive a significant amount of money, which they can use to fund various athletic programs, scholarships, and facility improvements.
This infusion of funds helps level the playing field and allows these schools to remain competitive in college football.
It’s important to note that guarantee games not only benefit the participating teams but also the local economies. When fans from both teams travel to attend the game, they spend money on accommodations, dining, and entertainment, stimulating the local economy.
How the Nebraska vs. Georgia Southern Deal Came Together
When it comes to college football, there’s more to the game than just touchdowns and field goals. Behind the scenes, there are negotiations, contracts, and financial agreements that make it all possible. One such arrangement was the game between Nebraska and Georgia Southern.
Let’s take a closer look at how this deal came together.
Standard Payouts for Guarantee Opponents
When a team like Georgia Southern agrees to play a game against a higher-ranked opponent like Nebraska, they are often referred to as a “guarantee opponent.” This means that Georgia Southern receives a guaranteed financial payout for participating in the game.
These payouts are standard in college football and are a way for smaller programs to generate revenue and gain exposure.
The amount of money paid to guarantee opponents can vary depending on several factors, including the reputation of the teams involved and the location of the game. However, it is not uncommon for these payouts to range from tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Nebraska’s Big Payout Secured a Home Game
For Nebraska, securing a game against Georgia Southern meant more than just finding an opponent for their schedule. It also provided them with a valuable home game, which can be a significant source of revenue for the university.
Hosting a home game allows Nebraska to sell tickets, concessions, and merchandise, all of which contribute to their overall financial success. Additionally, a home game provides an opportunity for fans to gather and support the team, creating an electric atmosphere in the stadium.
While the exact amount of money Nebraska paid Georgia Southern has not been disclosed, it is safe to say that the financial investment was significant. However, considering the benefits of hosting a home game, it was a worthwhile expense for Nebraska.
Georgia Southern Welcomed the Big Payday
For Georgia Southern, the financial payout from the game against Nebraska was undoubtedly a welcome addition to their athletic department’s budget. The money received from guarantee games like this helps support the program, allowing them to fund scholarships, facility upgrades, and other expenses.
Furthermore, playing against a team like Nebraska provides Georgia Southern with invaluable exposure. It allows their players to compete against top-level competition and gain national attention. This exposure can lead to increased recruiting success and help the program grow in the long run.
Takeaways from the Nebraska vs. Georgia Southern Guarantee Game
The recent football game between Nebraska and Georgia Southern garnered attention not only for the on-field action but also for the financial implications for both schools. Let’s take a closer look at some key takeaways from this highly anticipated guarantee game.
Win-Win Financial Situation for Both Schools
The Nebraska vs. Georgia Southern game proved to be a win-win financial situation for both schools. Guarantee games, where one team pays another team to come and play, have become increasingly common in college football.
Nebraska paid Georgia Southern a substantial sum to come and compete in their home stadium, which provided the visiting team with a significant financial boost.
These guarantee games are crucial for smaller schools like Georgia Southern, which rely on the revenue generated from these matchups to fund their athletic programs. The financial support received from participating in these games allows these schools to invest in facilities, recruit talented athletes, and provide a quality sports experience for their students.
Importance of Home Games for Nebraska
For Nebraska, hosting guarantee games provides several benefits. Firstly, it allows the Cornhuskers to showcase their program to a wider audience and attract potential recruits. These games also boost the local economy, as fans from both teams travel to attend the match, staying in hotels, eating at local restaurants, and shopping in the area.
The revenue generated from ticket sales, concessions, and merchandise sales during these games contributes to the overall financial health of the university.
Moreover, guarantee games, especially home games, help to build team morale and engage the local community. The excitement surrounding these matchups brings fans together, fostering a sense of unity and pride in their team.
Home games also provide an opportunity for Nebraska fans to experience the electric atmosphere of college football right on their doorstep.
Georgia Southern’s Hefty Payout
One of the standout aspects of the Nebraska vs. Georgia Southern guarantee game was the hefty payout received by Georgia Southern. While the exact amount has not been publicly disclosed, it is estimated that the visiting team received a substantial sum for their participation.
This financial injection will undoubtedly have a positive impact on Georgia Southern’s athletic department, allowing them to invest in their program’s growth and development.
It is worth noting that guarantee games are not without controversy, as critics argue that they perpetuate an imbalance in college football. Powerhouse programs like Nebraska have the financial resources to pay smaller schools for these matchups, leaving the smaller schools dependent on these games for revenue.
However, for now, guarantee games continue to be an essential part of the college football landscape, creating exciting opportunities for both larger and smaller programs alike.
While Nebraska ended up winning the game, both schools benefited financially from this guarantee game deal. The $1.4 million payout provided a major revenue boost for Georgia Southern, while Nebraska secured another home game.
This one non-conference matchup provides a glimpse into the economics that drive the college football scheduling process each year. Guarantee games will continue to be an integral part of the game.