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Inside Ohio State's athletic department finances

Jan. 24—Ohio State reported a profit of $4.6 million for the athletics department in fiscal year 2022-23.

In a report released Tuesday, the school revealed the department brought in a record $279,549,337, an 11% increase of nearly $28 million from the previous year when Ohio State led the nation in athletics revenue.

"Ohio State athletics remain on a rock-solid foundation thanks to the tremendous support from our fans, students and alumni," Ohio State director of athletics Gene Smith said in a published statement. "They continue to show up, tune in and support our student-athletes, coaches and staff at our fields, stadiums and arenas."

Ticket sales provided a major boost, likely thanks to eight home football games including visits from Notre Dame and Michigan in 2022.

Here are five takeaways from the report, which is prepared annually for the NCAA:

1. Overall, the school brought in $73,386,886 via ticket sales.

That includes $64.3 million from football, $4.7 million from men's basketball and $559,942 from women's basketball.

Men's ice hockey ($494,470), wrestling ($365,452) and women's volleyball ($305,965) and women's gymnastics ($103,186) also brought in six figures.

Programs, novelties, parking and concessions ($11.6 million, up 48 percent) and royalties, licensing, advertisement and sponsorships ($42.8 million, up 42%) also saw big gains in revenue.

2. Contributions were down more than eight percent.

Ohio State reported receiving $57.8 million in contributions from individuals, corporations, associations, foundations clubs or other organizations.

That is more than $5 million less than the previous year but still significantly more than 2020 ($48.1 million) and more than double what the school reported in 2018 and '19 combined, $33.5 and $29.6 million, respectively.

(The school brought in $19.7 million during the 2021 fiscal year which was heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic).

3. Media rights remained the No. 3 source of revenue.

The school got $49.7 million from the Big Ten for media rights, a 2.7 percent increase from the previous year.

That figure is projected to increase more substantially this year with the conference starting its new media rights deals with Fox, NBC and CBS.

4. Overall expenses rose to $274.9 million.

That is an increase of more than $50 million, or 22.7 percent.

Expenses labeled as "other" rose 45.8 percent to $17.8 million, and game expenses rose 45.5 percent to $10.1 million. The department also spent $14.1 million on travel (up $3.6 million, or 34.5 percent).

Coaching salaries went up 7.1 percent to $45.2 million while support staff pay increased 15.2 percent to $45.5 million.

5. Profit was down more than $20 million — with a caveat.

In expenses, $45.3 million was spent on facilities debt, leases and rentals fees, an increase of $26.2 million from the previous year.

The university indicated in a statement that can be attributed to "additional principal payments" on new and upgraded facilities such as the Covelli Center and the football complex "to reduce payments in the future."

In 2021-22, the university reported spending $19.1 million in that category and clearing an overall profit of $25.8 million.