NCAA

PSU: Fine not as impactful as it seems

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PSU: Fine not as impactful as it seems

By RACHEL COHEN & BRENT KALLESTAD
NEW YORK -- The 60 million fine levied on Penn State by the NCAA doesn't look so big next to the scale of the athletic department's finances.
Penn State plans to pay the fine, part of sanctions announced Monday over the child sexual abuse scandal, in five annual installments of 12 million.
The Penn State athletic department had more than 116 million in revenue to more than 84 million in expenses for the 2010-11 school year, according to data reported by the school to the U.S. Department of Education. The expenses don't include debt service or capital expenditures.
Penn State won't be able to save money by making cuts in other sports. The NCAA specifically prohibited that as part of the punishment.
Instead of simply cutting costs, the athletic department can make up for any shortfalls in another way: raising money.
Major college athletic departments receive significant financial support from booster clubs. The Nittany Lion Club took in more than 82 million for the 2011 fiscal year, according to its annual report. That includes 34 million in special gifts for facilities. Its annual fund brought in 17 million, and donations for suites and club seats at Beaver Stadium totaled 12 million.
There were 50 contributors who gave at least 20,000 each.
Bob Harrison, Class of 1962, has donated more than 250,000 to Penn State in his life. Frustrated that the NCAA based its sanctions on what he considers a deeply flawed Freeh report, Harrison's support for the school and the athletic department has not wavered. And he believes he's not the only booster who feels that way.
"I would say a high percentage supporting the athletic program will continue to," said Harrison, who worked for Goldman Sachs for 28 years.
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett demanded assurances from the university that taxpayer money would not be used. Penn State said it would cover it with its athletics reserve fund and capital maintenance budget and, if necessary, borrow money.
The reduction in football scholarships handed down by the NCAA will save the athletic program some. The accompanying bowl ban could also reduce costs, because schools often lose money on lower-level bowls.
The NCAA said the 60 million represented the average annual gross revenue of the football program. The money will go toward outside programs devoted to preventing child sexual abuse or assisting victims.
The Big Ten also announced that Penn State would not be allowed to share in the conference's bowl revenue during the postseason ban, an estimated loss of about 13 million.
At Penn State, the men's basketball team had profits of nearly 5 million in 2010-11, according to the Department of Education report. Teams other than football and men's basketball had about 23 million in expenses, and the athletic department spent another 36.5 million on expenses not allocated to a particular sport. Football cost 19.5 million.
Of course, football revenue could lag if the team struggles badly on the field as a result of the sanctions, and ticket sales decrease.
The university said earlier this month that its fundraising was strong over the past year despite the scandal. Penn State received more than 208 million in donations for the fiscal year that just ended, the second-highest total in school history.

Brown's big day leads BC to rout at Virginia, 41-10

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USA TODAY Sports

Brown's big day leads BC to rout at Virginia, 41-10

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- Anthony Brown threw three touchdown passes and Boston College's defense stifled Virginia in a 41-10 victory on Saturday.

The Eagles (4-4, 2-3 Atlantic Coast Conference) won their second straight road game, and did it behind Brown, who completed 19 of 24 passes for 275 yards, and a defense that limited Virginia to 247. The Eagles, by contrast, had 275 through the air and 237 on the ground.

Virginia (5-2, 2-1) came up well short in its bid for a fifth straight victory and bowl eligibility for the first time since 2011.

The Eagles used big plays to blow the game open quickly.

Thadd Smith took a jet sweep 76 yards down the sideline to make it 10-0 with 4:16 left in the first quarter. After Virginia went three-and-out, Brown hit Kobay White with a screen pass and White took it 76 yards down the middle of the field to make it 17-0 with 1:57 left.

After another Virginia punt, the Eagles ran a flea flicker, and Brown hit Michael Walker for 46 yards, setting up Brown's 10-yard touchdown throw to tight end Tom Sweeney with no defenders anywhere near him five plays later. He later found Sweeney again, this time from 3 yards out, to give BC a 34-7 lead.

While Brown was having his way with the Cavaliers defense, the Eagles were giving Kurt Benkert fits. They sacked him three times and had him on the run all day. His frustration finally showed in the second quarter when, scrambling left, he threw a left-handed backhand pass that was intercepted.

Oh boy.

No. 5 Wisconsin stays unbeaten with 38-13 win over Maryland

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USA TODAY Sports

No. 5 Wisconsin stays unbeaten with 38-13 win over Maryland

MADISON, Wis. -- Jonathan Taylor ran for a touchdown and broke the 1,000-yard mark for the season, Alex Hornibrook passed for two scores and No. 5 Wisconsin stayed unbeaten with a 38-13 win over Maryland on Saturday.

Taylor finished with 126 yards on 22 carries, a relatively ho-hum day following two straight 200-yard outings for the running back.

Playing in his seventh contest at Wisconsin (7-0, 4-0 Big Ten), Taylor tied a major college football record shared by five other backs for fewest games by a freshman to get to 1,000 yards.

Hornibrook shook off an interception on his second attempt of the day, finishing 16 of 24 for 225 yards to balance the offense.

Maryland (3-4, 1-3), which has the league's worst defense, could have picked up some early pointers from Wisconsin.

Under heavy pressure, Max Bortenschlager's pass over the middle was intercepted by Wisconsin linebacker T.J. Edwards and returned 54 yards for a touchdown to open the scoring with 12:18 left in the first quarter.

No wonder Maryland rarely took a shot down the field.

But the Terrapins did have some success running the ball out of spread formations, with Ty Johnson leading the way with 83 yards on 16 carries. They dented a defense that was allowing a Big Ten-best 78.8 yards a game for 143 yards overall on 35 carries.

An 11-play, 73-yard drive set up in part by eight runs and a penalty ended with Bortenschlager's 10-yard touchdown pass to Taivon Jacobs to get Maryland to within 28-10 about midway through the third quarter.

Wisconsin, though, sets a high bar in the ground game, and Maryland just couldn't keep up.

Fullback Austin Ramesh's 1-yard touchdown run with 9:10 left in the game ended an 11-play, 76-yard drive, giving Wisconsin a three-score lead that extinguished any faint upset hopes.