Wrestling is big money for the WIAA

One of the perks of working for a newspaper was access to manuals and reports that regular fans of wrestling don't usually see.  One such report was the 84th annual yearbook of the WIAA.  This detailed all kinds of information about each sport, records of teams at state and how much each sport collected in funds from the start of tournaments (regionals, sectionals, etc.) right on through the state tournaments.

It reports the amount collected in tickets, the cost of trophies and awards, officials fees and meet allowances and a variety of other expenses.  At the end, we have total expenses vs. total receipts.  The difference between the two is profit.

For the 2006-07 wrestling season, the tournaments collected $729,822.53 in receipts while expenses totaled $380,715.31.  That's a difference of $349,107.22.  The state tournament alone brought in $564,879.53.  That goes to show how much wrestling fans love their sport and it was reflected in a packed Kohl Center for most of the rounds.

How does wrestling compared to other sports?  Check it out below…

Expenses: $531,479.78
Receipts:  $902,433.57
Profit:  $370,953.79

Boys Basketball
Expenses:  $698,691.95
Receipts:  $1,732,947.86
Profits:  $1,034,255.91

Expenses:  $141,670.12
Receipts:  $79,303.34
Profits:  -62,366.78

Track and Field
Expenses:  $307,882.61
Receipts:  $125,240.21
Profits:  -182,643.240

I would have guessed Track and Field would be one of the biggest moneymakers for all the sports, but as you can see that's not the case.  Now, the WIAA doesn't just pocket this money and not invest it in anything.  Much of the profits are used to cover travel and room expenses for teams traveling to the state tournament.  One reason why the state track meet could be down almost $200,000 is that there are so many teams that must be reimbursed.  A school could get only one qualifer in and that's money out of the WIAA's pocket.  In wrestling, there are far fewer schools that send athletes to the state tournament and wrestling is primarily a one-gender sport so teammates can share rooms, while in Track and Field, two athletes may require two rooms if they are different genders thus doubling the expenses. 

It's an interesting look at how the WIAA operates and just how much revenue is accumulated at all levels of tournament play.


We have some exciting changes coming to  Besides an all-new look that is expected toward the end of the summer, we will also be introducing a video site that will feature clips of Spartan wrestling past and present.  The video site will debut closer to the start of the season, but when it does it should have over 50 video clips ready to be viewed.  These include such matches from many of the state tournaments in the 1990s including both of Troy Lietzau's state championship matches.  There's also video of Elvis… or at least the Elvis impersonator who came to the MVC/Coulee championship and entertained the crowd before the start of the finals.  Those are just a few of the clips that will be on the site.  Be sure to keep checking back here for more information about some of the upcoming changes.

Add a comment...

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *

Let's Get In Touch!

Ready to start your next project with us? That's great! Give us a call or send us an email and we will get back to you as soon as possible!