Thanks to TV contracts and merchandising royalties, Big Ten teams are bringing in and spending huge amounts of money to run their athletic programs. Last year, Big Ten athletic programs spent almost $2 billion in total.

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According to, the top spending program was THE Ohio State University, spending $220 million on their 36 teams and 956 athletes. Michigan State spent $135 million on 25 teams and 715 athletes (and how does Ohio State have 11 more teams than State?) Michigan State is #6 on the list of highest spending programs.

On the low end of the spending in the Big Ten is Purdue, which spent "just" $102 million. Missing from the list? Northwestern, which is a private university, so they don't have to disclose what they spent.

Can you guess who's #2 in spending to Ohio State? Maybe if they spent a little more money, they'd beat Ohio State.


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