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One of the more intriguing aspects of the young offseason is the changing of the guard at UT Martin. I’m not talking about the school’s new coach, Heath Schroyer, but the school’s new athletic director, Julio Freire, who has greatly increased the salary for his new coach, and appears to be willing to spend more money on the program.

But does more money really lead to more wins? Somewhat, at least over the past two seasons.

In the 2012-13 season, it should come as no surprise that Belmont was the conference’s top spender on men’s basketball, with over $2.3 million going to the sport. Murray State was second, spending more than $1.6 million. It would appear that both got good bang for their buck, as the two schools won their respective division, and played in a classic OVC conference title game.

But neither topped Eastern Kentucky in doing the most with the least. These numbers are from the Office of Postsecondary Education.

Men’s Basketball Spending Per Win (2012-13 season)

SchoolCost Per Win2012-13 RecordMen's Basketball Budget (Rank)
Belmont$91,627.2726-7$2,383,453 (1)
Murray State$77,807.9521-10$1,633,967 (2)
Eastern Kentucky$50,372.4025-10$1,259,310 (3)
Morehead State$82,514.6715-18$1,237,720 (4)
Tennessee Tech$98,572.5812-17$1,182,871 (5)
Southeast Missouri$60,930.9417-16$1,035,826 (8)
Eastern Illinois$96,874.5511-21$1,065,620 (7)
SIUE$80,971.679-18$728,745 (12)
Austin Peay$106,293.758-23$850,350 (11)
Jacksonville State$60,644.2917-11$1,030,953 (9)
Tennessee State$65,228.3918-15$1,175,191 (6)
UT Martin$102,747.449-21$924,727 (10)

While Eastern Kentucky had the lowest cost-to-win ratio, what is interesting is that spending very much led to success. Though it’s not completely clear in the overall records, the top-for seeds that season were, in order, Belmont, Murray State, Eastern Kentucky, and Morehead State. Or, in order, the number one, two, three, and fourth largest spenders in the conference.

After that, it was a bit more even, as for the most part was spending.

Assuming no or only minor changes in team’s athletic budgets this season, the same likely held true for 2013-14. The big difference was how lower spending teams performed.

Projected Men’s Basketball Spending Per Win (2013-14 season)

SchoolProjected Cost Per Win2013-14 Record
Belmont$91,671.2726-10
Murray State$71,042.0423-11
Eastern Kentucky$52,471.2524-10
Morehead State$61,886.0020-14
Tennessee Tech$29.580.6517-16
Southeast Missouri$57,545.8918-14
Eastern Illinois$96,874.5511-19
SIUE$66,249.5511-20
Austin Peay$70.862.5012-18
Jacksonville State$103,095.3010-21
Tennessee State$235,038.205-25
UT Martin$115,590.888-23

It should be noted that I had to change the graph’s scale to deal with Tennessee State’s monstrous $235,038 dollars per paltry five wins. For the most part, the trends from the previous season rang true.

The final spending numbers for 2013-14 are expected later this fall. I’ll update these numbers when they do.


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OVC Ball
Predicting the OVC race…in mid-December

2016-17 Basketball Standings

OVCOverall

EAST

Belmont8-014-4
Morehead State6-310-12
Tennessee Tech5-39-14
Jacksonville State5-413-11
Tennessee State4-413-8
Eastern Kentucky2-69-14

WEST

UT Martin5-315-8
Murray State5-311-11
SEMO5-310-13
Austin Peay3-57-15
Eastern Illinois1-79-12
SIUE0-85-17
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