IU Athletics announces furloughs and other cuts in response to lost revenue during pandemic

The seemingly inevitable has arrived in Bloomington.

After more than five months without competition and nothing on the near-term horizon, the IU Athletics Department announced on Friday measures intended to mitigate the impact of lost revenue due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Of particular note, every employee in the department is subject to at least a two-week unpaid furlough between Oct. 1 and June 30.

“Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, IU Athletics has not participated in an intercollegiate athletic event in five and a half months, which necessitated tough decisions regarding our staff,” AD Scott Dolson said in a release. “Throughout this process, we have prioritized our staff, and the decision to ask everyone to share the burden was made to minimize the number of employees who would be impacted to a much more significant degree.”

The anticipated delay or loss of the football season is particularly problematic.

IU Athletics brought in approximately $128 million in revenue during the 2019 fiscal year.  Of that amount, football accounted for around $53 million including media rights and ticket sales according to a Bloomington Herald Times report.

Earlier this summer, head coaches Tom Allen and Archie Miller, along with Dolson agreed to take voluntary 10 percent salary reductions.

The full release from IU Athletics follows.


INDIANA UNIVERSITY ATHLETICS ANNOUNCES MEASURES FOLLOWING POSTPONEMENT OF FALL SPORTS SEASON

Bloomington, Indiana – Indiana University Athletics announced today a series of measures taken in response to the postponement of the 2020 fall sports season earlier this month which significantly impact staff work responsibilities.

Beginning October 1, all department staff members will be subject to at least a two-week, unpaid furlough between October 1, 2020, and June 30, 2021. Other staff members whose positions have been most directly impacted by the lack of sporting events this fall will have their work hours reduced to either every other week (50%) or, in some cases, in full (100%).

The measures, both event-based and duty-specific, are necessary steps in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent cancellation of events last spring and the postponement of fall sports.

In addition to the effect on competitions and events, the financial impact has been enormous and unprecedented. To mitigate the financial challenges, earlier this summer, IU Athletics instituted a department-wide 10% budget cut that will save approximately $11.8 million during the current fiscal year.

Other actions include a freeze on discretionary bonuses, a hiring freeze (other than for countable coaches), a freeze on training trips, a travel ban, curtailing overtime, a freeze on all non-essential facility maintenance and construction, the University’s cell phone stipend elimination, a reduction in outside contracts with vendors, and other targeted cuts at the Department and program levels.

In addition, Head Men’s Basketball Coach Archie Miller, Head Football Coach Tom Allen, and Vice President and Director of Athletics Scott Dolson each took voluntary 10% pay cuts for the 2020-21 academic year. IU Athletics is continuing to explore additional financial mitigation measures as well.

“Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, IU Athletics has not participated in an intercollegiate athletic event in five and a half months, which necessitated tough decisions regarding our staff,” said Dolson. “Throughout this process, we have prioritized our staff, and the decision to ask everyone to share the burden was made to minimize the number of employees who would be impacted to a much more significant degree.

“With that said, this remains a very difficult day for our entire IU Athletics family, who devote their time, efforts and energies to supporting our students and representing our department and Indiana University in a first-class way.”


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