K.C. Masterpiece

            Iowa State’s newly-announced football series with Kansas State at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Mo., will be a huge financial windfall for the athletic department.

At minimum, ISU is looking at $800,000 more than it would have earned had the games remained at the schools’ home sites in 2009 and ’10. You don’t earn squat for road games.

Revenue for a game at Jack Trice Stadium is about $1 million.

The Kansas City Chiefs are paying ISU and K-State $1.8 million each over the two years, with additional monies possible depending on how well-attended the games are.

I would expect Arrowhead to be darned-near full.

Cyclone fans packed the place in 2002 when their team took Florida State to the wire. K-State people also represent well.

The Wildcats have played at Arrowhead four times since their K.C. debut against Iowa back in 2000. Only once was attendance below 77,000.

That boost to the budget is big-time for ISU, whose athletic budget is one of the lowest in the Big 12 Conference.

The series is a no-brainer for Athletic Director Jamie Pollard and K-State’s athletic department, which isn’t in much greater financial shape.

                For Texas, Nebraska, Oklahoma and even Texas A&M, an extra $1 million is great, yes, but not as great as it is in Ames, where cash like that can provide programs with financial security.

                And probably pay for new golf balls, balance beams or aluminum bats.               

                Some fans won’t like having to travel 3 ½ hours down Interstate 35, but just as many will think it’s the coolest thing ever. You don’t have to sneak beers into Arrowhead!

                Who doesn’t like the game day switch are Ames restaurants, hotels, bars and quickie marts.

                They make hay on those six or seven Saturdays each fall. Now, they won’t go out of business. They’ll just miss out on a big payday, while athletics rakes in money hand over fist.

                Home vendors aside, this is a great deal for Iowa State football and its fans, who if they couldn’t see a game at home, would probably pick Kansas City over every other location on Earth.


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