Former University of Tennessee athletic director Mike Hamilton.
Bolstered by new television contracts with CBS and ESPN, the Southeastern Conference announced Friday that it will distribute a record $209 million to its 12 member institutions for the 2009-10 fiscal year, which ends Aug. 31.
The total represents a staggering 57.7 percent increase from the $132.5 million distributed by the league a year ago.
This athletic year began the league's 15-year agreements with CBS and ESPN. CBS is paying the SEC $800 million over the 15 years; ESPN is paying the conference $2.25 billion.
As part of the league's revenue-sharing plan, each of the 12 schools will receive an average of $17.3 million.
The entire SEC didn't receive that much 20 years ago, as money distributions by decade have catapulted from $4.1 million in 1980 to $16.3 million in 1990 to $73.2 million in 2000 to $209 million in 2010.
Broken down by categories, football television accounted for more than half of the revenue with $109.5 million. Basketball television accounted for $30 million, while bowl games accounted for $26.5 million, NCAA championship events $23.5 million, the league football championship $14.5 million and the SEC men's basketball tournament $5 million.
The revenue distribution was announced as the league's spring meetings concluded in Destin, Fla.
Though the subject of conference expansion came up several times the past four days, league commissioner Mike Slive avoided any speculation by repeating his pledge to be "strategic and thoughtful." There were no changes made about re-seeding the men's conference basketball tournament, and Alabama has yet to get relief from its 2010 football schedule in which its last six conference foes have open dates before facing the Crimson Tide.
Once again the topic of an early signing period in college football was discussed, and again it was opposed and dismissed.
The league did announce its executive committee for the 2010-11 year. The president will be Florida president Bernie Machen, and the vice president will be Alabama president Robert Witt.
David Paschall is a sports writer for the Times Free Press. He started at the Chattanooga Free Press in 1990 and was part of the Times Free Press when the paper started in 1999. David covers University of Georgia football, as well as SEC football recruiting, SEC basketball, Chattanooga Lookouts baseball and other sports stories. He is a Chattanooga native and graduate of the Baylor School and Auburn University. David has received numerous honors for ...