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Big Men on Campus: Estimating the Economic Impact of College Sports on Local Economies

Robert Baade (), Robert Baumann () and Victor Matheson ()
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Robert Baade: Department of Economics and Business, Lake Forest College

No 704, Working Papers from College of the Holy Cross, Department of Economics

Abstract: College football and men’s basketball are the largest revenue generators in college athletics. Studies funded by athletic boosters tout the economic benefits of a college athletic program as an incentive for host cities to construct new stadiums or arenas at considerable public expense. Our analysis of the economic impact of home football and men’s basketball games on Tallahassee (home of Florida State University) and Gainesville (home of the University of Florida) between 1980 to early-2007 fails to support these claims. Men’s basketball games at these universities have no statistically significant impact on taxable sales, while football yields a modest gain of $2 to $3 million per home game. While this positive finding is one of the first in the academic literature of the impact of sports, these gains pale in comparison to the figures in many of the studies funded by athletic boosters.

Keywords: sports; basketball; football; college sports; impact analysis; mega-event (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: L83 O18 R53 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-edu, nep-spo and nep-ure
Date: 2007-08
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Published in Regional Studies

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http://web.holycross.edu/RePEc/hcx/HC0704-Matheson ... nn_CollegeSports.pdf (application/pdf)

Related works:
Journal Article: Big Men on Campus: Estimating the Economic Impact of College Sports on Local Economies (2011) Downloads
Working Paper: Big Men on Campus: Estimating the Economic Impact of College Sports on Local Economies (2007) Downloads
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