Big 12 distributes $252 million in annual revenue

IRVING, Texas — The Big 12’s collective pool of cash has continued to grow. 

Commissioner Bob Bowlsby announced $252 million in distributable revenue from the 2014-15 school year to close the league’s spring business meetings on Friday. 

The league’s eight remaining founding members received shares ranging from $25.5 million to $27 million, which varied by participation in various championships. 

TCU received a share of nearly $24 million, about a million more than West Virginia because the Frogs qualified for a CFP access bowl last season. 

TCU and West Virginia received 85 percent shares this year, up from 67 percent a year ago, per their agreement to join the Big 12. Both will receive full shares for the first time next year. 

The Big 12 distributed $220.1 million last year, an average of $22 million per school. 

Bowlsby reiterated on Friday that the league’s distribution numbers do not include third-tier revenue, which schools are free to monetize on their own. Texas earns an additional $15 million per year from ESPN for the Longhorn Network. West Virginia earned a reported $6.6 million this year for its agreement with IMG. 

Kansas and Oklahoma have deals with Time Warner Cable and Fox Sports, respectively, that earn them similar figures. 

Other league schools earn around $2-3 million with smaller distribution agreements. 

Friday, ESPN reported the SEC was distributing more than $30 million per school, up from $20 million a year ago, thanks to the SEC Network’s launch. 

"I think we’re in a very good place financially," said Oklahoma State president Burns Hargis, the outgoing chairman of the league’s board of directors. "The disparity is near what that looks like. As long as our student athletes are getting the facilities and academic support and full cost of attendance dollars, we’ll be able to compete just fine and I don’t think our fans will question that." 

The Big 12 withheld a surplus of $8.7 million from its distributable revenue to account for legal fees and unforeseen costs. 

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