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NCAA to Distribute $625M to D-I Conferences, Schools

  • This year, the NCAA will pay out more than it ever has to D-I schools.
  • The distribution system is based on a number of factors, including men’s March Madness.
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY /Design: Alex Brooks

Every year, the NCAA distributes about 60% of its total revenue — most of which comes from the Division I men’s basketball tournament — to D-I schools and conferences. 

This year, the NCAA will pay out more than it ever has to D-I schools. The governing body has allocated $625.5 million, according to the 2022 NCAA Division I revenue distribution plan.

  • Last year, the NCAA distributed $613.4 million — back up from the $246.3 million it sent to schools after the 2020 men’s tournament was canceled due to the pandemic.
  • But by 2032, the NCAA has budgeted for $826.6 million worth of distributions, documents show. 

The increase follows a steady growth in payouts for media rights for the men’s tournament. This year, the rights will pay out about $870 million, per the NCAA’s 2021 annual fiscal report. They’ll reach about $1 billion by 2026.

March Money

The distribution system is based on a number of factors, including men’s March Madness. Of this year’s allocations, about $233.7 million — or 37% — are related to eligibility, participation, and success in the Big Dance.

There is, however, no such system to reward prowess in the women’s tournament — a major equity flaw recognized by the 2021 NCAA gender equity report.

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