In a letter submitted to the University of California Regents to discuss UCLA’s proposed transition to a Big Ten conference, Pac-12 commissioner George Kurifkov said the transition ahead of Thursday’s closed session. detailed the “serious concerns” he had about Impact on the mental health of student-athletes, increased transportation and operating costs, negative impact on both Cal revenue and the UC system’s climate goals.
According to one source, Krivakov’s letter was provided in response to a request from the regent for the conference’s view on UCLA’s move.
“Despite all the explanations given after the fact, UCLA’s decision to join the Big Ten was clearly financial, after UCLA’s athletic department racked up more than $100 million in debt in the last three fiscal years. motives,” writes Kliavkoff.
He said the increase in revenue UCLA will receive will be fully offset by increased costs due to additional travel, the need for competitive salaries within the Big Ten, and game warranty costs.
“UCLA currently spends about $8.1 million a year on travel expenses for teams to attend the Pac-12 conference,” said Kliavkoff. “UCLA sees a 100% increase in team travel costs when making commercial flights in the Big Ten (an increase of $8.1 million per year) and a 160% increase when chartering half the time ($13.1 million per year). , an increase of 290% occurs, and if we charter all flights (an increase of $23 million per year).”
Kliavkoff did not indicate how these figures were calculated or whether there was any genuine belief that UCLA would consider charter trips for teams other than football and basketball.
The school expects to spend about $6 million to $10 million more annually moving the Big Ten and Pac-12, according to sources familiar with UCLA’s internal estimates.
Kryavkov speculated that moving to the Big Ten would also help UCLA increase salaries to bring them in line with conference standards. He estimates that UCLA would need to raise salaries in the athletic department by about $15 million for the college to reach the Big Ten average.
“The financial benefits that UCLA achieves by participating in the Big Ten go to airlines and charters, managers’ and coaches’ salaries, and other recipients, rather than providing additional resources to student-athletes. will be,” said Kliavkoff.
A UCLA spokeswoman declined to comment.
UC President Michael V. Drake, former president of Ohio State University, said in an interview with the New York Times:
Beyond the financial impact on UCLA, Kliavkoff said it would also hit Cal, which is part of the UCLA system. With negotiations on media rights underway, Kryavkov said it would be difficult to disclose the exact impact without revealing confidential information, but the Pac-12 is expected to bid with or without UCLA. I have confirmed that I am requesting
Beyond the added economic component of travel, Kliavkoff said “published media surveys by the National Institutes of Health, research conducted by the NCAA, and discussions with our own student-athlete leaders” Movement has shown to negatively impact student-athletes’ mental health and deprive them of their academic pursuits. He added that it would be taxing for his family and alumni to take cross-country trips to see UCLA teams play.
Finally, Kryavkov said the addition of travel goes against the UC system’s climate goals and against UCLA’s efforts to achieve “climate neutrality” by 2025.