Mike Henry: The U's $199,826 man

  • Article by: MIKE KASZUBA , Star Tribune
  • Updated: December 27, 2013 - 9:45 AM

A study shows the average cost of a Gophers player -- such as fullback Mike Henry, for example -- nearly has doubled in a span of six years.

Mike Henry is the $199,826 man.

Henry is a senior fullback at the University of Minnesota and will play his last college football game Friday at the Texas Bowl. As a blocking back who played in 11 games this year, Henry has been a steady player for coach Jerry Kill but fills a role that does not generate many headlines.

But a new database by the Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics shows that the school’s cost to put Henry and others like him on the field can be pricey: The University of Minnesota spent $199,826 annually for each scholarship football player, according to the most recent data from 2011, up from $107,636 in 2005.

Henry’s total includes almost everything imaginable that goes into a big-time college football program. There was $8,393 for the lodging and meals associated with team travel; $6,510 for equipment, which includes Henry’s maroon helmet; and $12,402 to pay the wages, benefits and bonuses for the football program’s support staff, including its secretaries and trainers.

Even the $1.92 million in salary and benefits paid to the head coach was factored in: The cost of putting Henry on the field included $22,556 to compensate the team’s head coaches that fiscal year, Kill and fired predecessor Tim Brewster.

By comparison, the university invested $20,688 in 2011 in academic spending per full-time equivalent student.

The costs have not been lost on Henry, who already has graduated as a business and marketing education major.

“I started thinking about our equipment,” a sweaty Henry said after he finished practice last week. “We got two pairs of cleats — practice, game cleats, [and] new helmets — two different helmets. We got shoulder pads. A lot goes into it, and I’m sure the expenditures there aren’t cheap.”

Despite the high costs, Gophers football remains a big moneymaker. While football operating expenses totaled $16.9 million in 2011, total football revenue was $30.5 million. It was even more lucrative in 2012 — the Gophers’ expenses were $16.2 million, and revenue was twice as much at just under $33 million.

Below Big Ten median

Minnesota is not at the high end of football spending, according to the Knight Commission report.

Alabama, which has won three of the past four national championships, spent $342,020 per scholarship player in 2011, nearly double the $175,010 the university spent six years before. Ohio State spent even more — $456,023 per scholarship football player in 2011.

The Gophers’ cost was also below the median for the Big Ten Conference, which was $210,787 in 2011 and even further below the $259,251 median for the Southeastern Conference. Among Big Ten schools, only Minnesota, Indiana ($189.118), Purdue ($132,802) and Illinois ($128,607) spent less than $200,000 per player in 2011, according to the report; spending numbers were not made available by Penn State and Northwestern officials.

Among the Gophers’ closest conference neighbors, Minnesota ranked behind Wisconsin ($278,387), Iowa ($234,782) and Nebraska ($207,704).

The landscape changes when comparing academic spending.

While Ohio State had $20,873 in academic spending for every full-time equivalent student in 2011 — slightly more than Minnesota — Alabama spent significantly less, $15,664.

Iowa, Wisconsin and Illinois also had less than Minnesota in academic spending per full-time equivalent student in 2011. While Wisconsin had more football spending per scholarship player than Minnesota, it had less academic spending per full-time equivalent student, $19,246.

The Gophers likewise finished ahead of the Big Ten median of $18,881 in academic spending per full-time equivalent student in 2011.

  • related content

  • Chart: The cost of a Gophers player

    Wednesday December 25, 2013

    The cost of a Gophers football player$199,826: That's the cost of putting Gophers fullback Mike Henry -- or any other...

  • Chart: Escalating costs in college football

    Wednesday December 25, 2013

    A sampling of spending per scholarship football player:Minnesota: $107,636 per player in 2005; $199,826 in 2011Ohio State: $298,971 in 2005; $456,023 in 2011Michigan:...

  • Gophers fullback Mike Henry

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Chicago 17 FINAL
Detroit 34
Philadelphia 33 FINAL
Dallas 10
Seattle 19 FINAL
San Francisco 3
Cleveland 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Buffalo
Washington 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Indianapolis
Tennessee 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Houston
San Diego 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Baltimore
NY Giants 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Cincinnati 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Oakland 11/30/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis
New Orleans 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Pittsburgh
Carolina 11/30/14 12:00 PM
Minnesota
Arizona 11/30/14 3:05 PM
Atlanta
New England 11/30/14 3:25 PM
Green Bay
Denver 11/30/14 7:30 PM
Kansas City
Miami 12/1/14 7:30 PM
NY Jets
Edmonton 0 FINAL(OT)
Nashville 1
ULM 54 FINAL
Robert Morris 71
Santa Clara 57 FINAL
Tennessee 64
Oklahoma 59 FINAL
Butler 46
Austin Peay 79 FINAL
Brown 58
Princeton 56 FINAL
Texas-El Paso 62
Coastal Carolina 67 FINAL
Chattanooga 78
Kansas 76 FINAL
Rhode Island 60
Wisconsin 68 FINAL
Georgetown 65
FIU 53 FINAL
USC Upstate 68
Long Island 54 FINAL
Stony Brook 73
San Diego 71 FINAL
Xavier 82
Illinois 88 FINAL
Indiana State 62
Cal State Fullerton 67 FINAL
Wright State 62
Western Ky 62 FINAL
Saint Josephs 59
Michigan State 77 FINAL
Rider 45
UCLA 56 FINAL
North Carolina 78
Long Beach State 73 FINAL
Western Mich 55
Marquette 72 FINAL
Georgia Tech 70
Stephen F Austin 73 FINAL
Prairie View 61
UAB 47 FINAL
Florida 56
Rice 71 FINAL
Mercer 77
San Jose St 56 FINAL
Washington 78
Washington St 43 FINAL
UC Santa Barbara 71
Baylor 71 FINAL
Memphis 47
LSU 23 FINAL
Texas A&M 17
(6) TCU 48 FINAL
Texas 10
Northern Ill 10:00 AM
Western Mich
Nebraska 11:00 AM
Iowa
Western Ky 11:00 AM
(19) Marshall
UCF 11:00 AM
So Florida
Houston 11:00 AM
SMU
Akron 12:00 PM
Kent State
Ball State 12:00 PM
Bowling Green
Buffalo 12:00 PM
Massachusetts
Toledo 12:00 PM
Eastern Mich
Arkansas 1:30 PM
(17) Missouri
Navy 2:00 PM
South Alabama
(13) Arizona State 2:30 PM
(12) Arizona
Stanford 2:30 PM
(9) UCLA
(21) Colorado State 2:30 PM
Air Force
Virginia 7:00 PM
Virginia Tech
East Carolina 7:30 PM
Tulsa
North Texas 11/29/14 11:00 AM
TX-San Antonio
Old Dominion 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Fla Atlantic
(16) Georgia Tech 11/29/14 11:00 AM
(8) Georgia
Kentucky 11/29/14 11:00 AM
(24) Louisville
So Carolina 11/29/14 11:00 AM
(23) Clemson
West Virginia 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Iowa State
Rice 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Louisiana Tech
Michigan 11/29/14 11:00 AM
(7) Ohio State
Purdue 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Indiana
Illinois 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Northwestern
Cincinnati 11/29/14 11:00 AM
Temple
NC State 11/29/14 11:30 AM
North Carolina
Syracuse 11/29/14 11:30 AM
Boston College
Louisiana 11/29/14 11:30 AM
Troy
Utah 11/29/14 12:00 PM
Colorado
Texas State 11/29/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Idaho 11/29/14 1:00 PM
Appalachian St
Wyoming 11/29/14 2:00 PM
New Mexico
New Mexico St 11/29/14 2:00 PM
Arkansas State
UAB 11/29/14 2:30 PM
Southern Miss
(4) Miss State 11/29/14 2:30 PM
(18) Ole Miss
Notre Dame 11/29/14 2:30 PM
USC
(10) Michigan State 11/29/14 2:30 PM
Penn State
(22) Minnesota 11/29/14 2:30 PM
(14) Wisconsin
(5) Baylor 11/29/14 2:30 PM
Texas Tech
Florida 11/29/14 2:30 PM
(1) Florida State
Rutgers 11/29/14 2:30 PM
Maryland
San Jose St 11/29/14 2:30 PM
San Diego St
Tennessee 11/29/14 3:00 PM
Vanderbilt
Kansas 11/29/14 3:00 PM
(11) Kansas State
Connecticut 11/29/14 3:00 PM
Memphis
BYU 11/29/14 3:30 PM
California
ULM 11/29/14 5:00 PM
Ga Southern
Middle Tennessee 11/29/14 6:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
Hawaii 11/29/14 6:00 PM
Fresno State
Wake Forest 11/29/14 6:00 PM
Duke
Pittsburgh 11/29/14 6:00 PM
Miami-Florida
(15) Auburn 11/29/14 6:45 PM
(2) Alabama
(3) Oregon 11/29/14 7:00 PM
Oregon State
Utah State 11/29/14 9:15 PM
(25) Boise State
Washington 11/29/14 9:30 PM
Washington St
Nevada 11/29/14 9:30 PM
UNLV
UCF 12/4/14 6:30 PM
East Carolina
Hamilton 11/30/14 5:00 PM
Calgary
Hartford 43 FINAL
Furman 53
Clemson 77 FINAL
Ohio State 86
Idaho State 53 FINAL
San Diego State 68
East Carolina 58 FINAL
(22) Syracuse 69
Santa Clara 0 Cancelled
Texas-El Paso 0
Florida State 68 FINAL
Washington 80
Wichita State 39 FINAL
Fla Gulf Coast 56
Wisconsin 44 FINAL
(1) South Carolina 67
Kansas State 0 Cancelled
LSU 0
BYU 73 FINAL
BYU-Hawaii 52
Charlotte 58 FINAL
Montana 67
Illinois 77 FINAL
(9) Kentucky 71
Central Michigan 61 FINAL
Richmond 56
Oklahoma 68 FINAL
South Florida 83
Princeton 72 FINAL
Wake Forest 55
(19) Oregon State 85 FINAL
Butler 53
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 season     
Aug 28 - vs. E. Illinois 6 pmX42-20
Sep 6 - vs. M. Tennessee St. 2:30 pmX35-24
Sep 13 - at TCU 3 pmX30-7
Sep 20 - vs. San Jose St. 3 p.m.X24-7
Sep 27 - at Michigan 2:30 pmX30-14
Oct 11 - vs. Northwestern 11 amX24-17
Oct 18 - vs. Purdue 11 amX39-38
Oct 25 - at Illinois 11 amX28-24
Nov 8 - vs. Iowa 11 amX51-14
Nov 15 - vs. Ohio State 11 amX31-24
Nov 22 - at Nebraska 11 amX28-24
Nov 29 - at Wisconsin 2:30 pm

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How will the Gophers and Vikings do this weekend?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close