Michigan AD Warde Manuel outlines deficit athletic department will see
Athletic departments across the country are going to see a significant decline in revenue due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. On Thursday, University of Michigan Athletic Director Warde Manuel outlined just how much of a deficit his department will face for the 2020-21 academic year.
Per Angelique Chengelis of The Detroit News, Manuel is projecting an estimated $26.1 million deficit for the athletic department for the 2020-21 fiscal year. Manuel presented the budge to the UM Regents.
From The Detroit News:
The athletic department projects operating expenses of $161.9 million and revenues of $135.8 in the fiscal year 2021 budget. According to Manuel’s presentation of the budget, spectator admissions are projected to decrease $29.2 million “due do lower anticipated attendance for all sports.” Also, preferred seat contributions are projected to decrease $17 million because of anticipated lower attendance and the potential fans will request refunds.
Manuel has already speculated that Michigan Stadium will not be full for the upcoming football season, and is anticipating somewhere between 20-50 percent capacity at the venue, if fans are permitted to attend at all. That will depend on school, state and potentially national guidelines that are implemented if and when the college football season kicks off.
No concrete answers regarding attendance or the season have been given at this time. However, B1G Commissioner Kevin Warren recently stated that the plan is still to play the season as scheduled. He did state that things are also “fluid” and could change.
Michigan won’t be the only school or athletic department to see significant losses this year due to the pandemic. Already, several Group of Five schools have terminated other sports, implemented furloughs and cut staff in an attempt to offset costs.