Higher bowl revenues meant more money for ACC members

Virginia Tech coach Justin Fuente waits during a break in the Maroon-White spring game on April 14 in Blacksburg.

The ACC generated record revenues of $418.1 million in the 2016-17 fiscal year, according to the league's federal tax forms that were released Friday, up nearly 12 percent from the previous year.

That bump comes mostly from an increase in bowl revenue. The league's contract bowl, the Orange, wasn't a national semifinal site for the College Football Playoff like it was in 2015-16. With the Orange Bowl as part of its lineup, the ACC received $113.2 million in bowl money in the 2016-17 fiscal year compared to $85.9 million the previous year.

Full member schools received between$25.3 million (Syracuse) and $30.7 million (Clemson) from the league, with Virginia Tech getting $26.4 million and Virginia $25.5 million. The variance is the result of bowl game allowances. Tech received $23.8 million and UVa $22.9 million in the 2015-16 fiscal year.

The distribution figures don't include $14.4 million the ACC reimbursed its schools for championship expenses, nor do they factor in a school's marketing and merchandise rights.

Though the ACC was fourth in total revenue distributed among the Power 5 conferences, it still had the lowest average payout per school, due to 14 teams getting a cut of the pie and Notre Dame, a partial member, receiving $5.8 million.

The ACC's average per-school distribution in 2016-17 was $26.6 million. The SEC distributed the most money to its schools of the Power 5 leagues, ranging from $39.9 million to $42 million, according to data compiled by USA Today. The Big Ten was next ($37 to $37.2 million), followed by the Big 12 ($34.3 million, except Baylor) and Pac-12 ($30.9 million).

It's a big reason the ACC has pushed for the creation of what it hopes will be a big revenue generator in the ACC Network, which is scheduled to launch in August of 2019.

The SEC and Big Ten have had highly profitable league networks in place for years, with the Pac 12's having more modest success. The Big 12 is the only league without a network or an intention to start one.

The bulk of the ACC's revenue in 2016-17 came in TV money, with the league hauling in $236 million, up from $226 million the previous year. Football bowl games added $113 million and the NCAA men's basketball tournament another $24 million (up from $20.6 million).

The ACC distributed $377.7 million to its member schools, around 90.3 percent of its total revenue, with $9.5 million being paid in salaries and benefits and $30.1 million in other expenses.

Commissioner John Swofford received a salary of $3.15 million, up from $2.92 million the previous year.

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