If you’d like to know why Greg McGarity has the AD job as long as he wants it, here you go:
The University of Georgia Athletic Association’s revenue has increased 68% in the past five fiscal years. Expenses shot up 55% in the same time period. UGAAA has seen more growth in revenue and expenses between 2014 and 2019 than all but two public SEC schools, Texas A&M and Mississippi State. Vanderbilt, a private university, doesn’t have publicly available data.
Georgia’s financial growth enabled it to upgrade football facilities and spend more money on recruiting football players from across the nation. The football team’s success in turn helps support 17 other Georgia teams, as men’s basketball is the only other team to turn a profit from as far back as the 2016 fiscal year.
The rise in revenue and expenses coincided with two events. One was the creation of the Magill Society by UGAAA in September 2015 to help boost contributions. Each member of the Magill Society, a group of about 1,200 donors, must pay a minimum donation of $25,000, which is often paid over the course of five years.
Subsequently, head football coach Kirby Smart was hired in December 2015, which was a move that helped Georgia football enter a period of sustained success.
You can argue that Smart’s hire was more fortuitous than anything, but I doubt McGarity does. And he certainly deserves credit for coming up with the Magill Society as a financial lever for the more well-endowed members of the fan base.
Although it’s probably the case that nobody talks much about life before 2015.
UGAAA was at a standstill in the 2014 fiscal year. Football ticket prices hadn’t changed in five years, and contributions were consistently hovering around $30 million per year. Georgia ranked seventh out of the 13 public SEC programs in revenue.
On the football field, Georgia hadn’t won an SEC championship since 2005. Since former head coach Mark Richt started in 2001, the Bulldogs averaged less than 10 wins a season and made the top five of the final Associated Press poll three times in 13 seasons.
Their facilities were also behind the times. Georgia was the last SEC school without an indoor football practice facility longer than 50 yards.
UGAAA declined to spend exorbitant amounts of money on new facilities without added revenue, McGarity said. It didn’t want long-term debt to rise.
“You would have to provide a way to pay for [new facilities],” McGarity said. “The only way you’d be able to pay for that would be to increase costs and donations that would revolve around football.”
All in the past now. Butts-Mehre has the money making machine cranked up. At least it did until the coronavirus showed up. We’ll see how it weathers the crisis.
25 responses to “Job security”
Just curious. Did any folks in here who buy season tickets take the UGAAA up on its offer to buy season tickets and defer payment until the end of May? Also, did any of you buy season tickets and pay for them already? And, finally, did any of you season ticket buyers elect to not buy this year?
I put a lot of thought into not renewing but my Wife urged me to get them so I sent in my order form but deferred payment to May 31st. I did not order Virginia tickets od Florida tickets, figuring if those games are played, it is safe to go and my practice is recovered so I can afford it I can buy on the secondary market.
I went ahead and paid. The call on the season isn’t happening in May. They are going to wait as long as possible to cancel or postpone the season.
If I go to the Virginia game, I will definitely be looking in the secondary market.
I definitely said I wanted a refund for any games not played instead of rolling it over for my PSL.
I paid half, I’ll pay the balance by the deadline. The ticket office seemed very accommodating.
The order process for UVA and UF games as well as road games has not yet started. Latest timing for that I believe is for those communications and orders to occur later in April.
I renewed and paid for renewable tickets by the 4/6 deadline in hopes that if some persons delayed ordering/paying, I would move higher in the pecking order for the May seat selection process. We’ll see if they stick to their word on that promise. I’ve got 40 years as a non-Magill donor and 8 seats invested in the Hartman Fund, so it will take more than this uncertainty to get me to simply not renew.
My presumption is that worst case anything paid into Hartman for this season will be rolled into 2021 if not refunded. The bigger question is how Hartman donations will be handled if there is an abbreviated 6-8 game season.
I wonder the same thing. They will most likely try to get away with not mentioning the Personal Seat License fees (aka “donations”) if there’s an abbreviated season. But if fans make enough noise about it, they’ll probably do something about it.
They didn’t say anything about refunding 2020 PSL fees until end of day yesterday, which just happened to be the end of the season ticket order period. People have been asking and complaining about that for a couple of weeks now but they didn’t want to mention it as a possibility until the season ticket order period was over.
By the way, see my comment below about 2020 PSL fees (aka “donations”) being refunded if the season is cancelled.
Or check your email. The Georgia Bulldog Club sent one out late yesterday afternoon.
The arrangement the ticket office made with me is that it is holding my seats for me, so they will not be available to someone else while I am waiting to pay.
I responded to the email about payment arrangements and got a call from Tim Cleary. I explained that I am promising my staff paychecks as usual, and at the moment very few clients are hiring me, so paying employees is a higher priority for me than football tickets. He understood and offered that arrangement.
LikeLiked by 1 person
Oh, there’s enough money to provide jobs for Joe Tereshinski VIII and his sons…Butts Mehre will be solvent long after the University of Georgia passes into memory.
LikeLiked by 1 person
The Butts-Mehre Country Club takes care of its own. That’s why it’s so important to have the biggest reserve fund in the country.
Will they allow us to rollover the d̶o̶n̶a̶t̶i̶o̶n̶ PSL fee if the season doesn’t happen?
The UGAAA says it will refund payments for tickets. Since it did not mention donations my conclusion is that UGAAA will not refund my Hartman Fund donation.
Will be interesting to see – the IRS has ruled that it isn’t a donation since you receive something in return for it (the right to buy season tickets in the same location). One could argue that if they didn’t receive that for 2020 in return for the money they paid to UGA>
They’ve finally added the following wording to the pop-up on The Georgia Bulldog Club website…
“Should this international pandemic result in the cancellation of the 2020 football season, there will be an opportunity for 2020 Hartman Fund contributions to be refunded.”
By the way, that wording is down at the bottom of the pop-up. It’s part of the last bullet point that starts with “At this time, we do not anticipate COVID-19 to impact…”
They sure didn’t refund any PSL’s for baseball or basketball…………
Well, basketball was over but baseball? They need to refund that. Or at the very least count it towards 2021. Have they communicated anything about it?
If not, I would ask and if necessary, complain. They wouldn’t have said what they said about football PSL refunds if people had not been asking about it. Like I said in another comment, they will first see if they can get away with not doing anything.
I did ask and complain, but they said no refunds coming. They figure nobody gets really pissed of about $100-200!
That’s pretty rotten of them…but typical. I guess the Butts-Mehre Country Club can only give so many opportunities to not get ripped off in the same calendar year.
The Georgia Way
An opportunity? As in, all requests must be by telephone between the hours of 1159 PM and midnight on June 30th, and McGairity will order all phones be left off the hook.
You gotta love how they word things. It’s nice that there will be an opportunity to not get ripped off.
I have to credit McGarity for the Kirby hire—even if for all we know McGarity was kidnapped and forced into the decision at gunpoint by elite boosters.
Not sure about everything else. I’m pretty sure Magill was a copy/paste from what other schools were doing. In fact, most major SEC schools use the same fund raising tactics and most of their foot soldiers hop from school to school doing the same job.
Things started changing when McGarity woke up one day and realized that Mikey had retired. McGarity may be frugal but who thinks he wasn’t marching to Adams’ demands? Kirby knew he had leverage because he was the only acceptable candidate when Richt was fired so his list of needs was long, and it was a need list, not a want list.
Hoping we can buy beer and weed in the stadium to help get the economy going again. Cheers y’all!
I’m surprised to even see the back-handed compliment of McGarity.
grrrrr, only “We’ll see how it weathers the crisis.” was supposed to be quoted.