The Chronicle of Higher Ed has the good news here:
Part of that money has gone to support the operations of the [Library]. It has also been used to establish faculty chairs in various colleges and to pay for art acquisitions and construction costs of an arts building. The athletic department has also given the university more than 20,000 square feet of office and meeting space that it no longer uses, helping the campus avoid millions of dollars in new construction costs.
The transfers to academics have remained consistent — about $8 million to $9 million a year in each of the past four years, …. The athletic department made those payments even in years, such as 2014, when it reported a deficit.
[The University President] believes that such transfers help connect the athletic department to the broader academic community.
“From the point of view of a president,” he says, “I want to make sure that athletics is an integral part of the university and represents our values.”
But of course this story is not about UO. It’s UT. The story lists 9 other universities that use athletics revenue to support academics.
Here at UO it’s the opposite, despite the surge in TV revenue. The UO administration uses a variety of stealth measures to extract ~$4M from the academic budget. See this UO Senate Legislation for details.
I did put an end to Frohnmayer and Kilkenny’s scheme to use UO money to pay the Ducks overhead costs, saving about $500K a year. That took quite a fight though. Steve Duin of the Oregonian helped, his report is here.