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There is never enough money to go around; especially high school athletic departmentsPosted Friday, November 28, 2008, at 10:43 AM
When you see football fans lined up around Roy Williams Field at Linton-Stockton High School, it is easy to assume that the money is rolling in hand over fist to the Miner athletic department.
But there is always somebody with their hand out and in this case it is the Indiana High School Athletic Association.
Unlike the regular season, when the home team gets to keep the receipts from athletic contests, the playoffs are another story altogether. All the money from the sectional is split eight ways in the case of Class A Sectional 40, after the IHSAA gets two percent.
"There was one game in the sectional where the teams lost money," said Linton-Stockton athletic director Charlie Karazsia. "But all of those sectional games are split eight different ways.
"People think just because you have a home playoff game with a big crowd that you are making big money. I don't think people understand about the IHSAA and where the money goes.
"I thought that doing a story about this might make people understand that schools don't keep their own gate in the tournament."
Karazsia was quick to note that he does not begrudge the IHSAA, but just wanted people to understand that their coffers aren't running over.
"I am not complaining about this," he said. "The kids and the school get a lot of recognition when we win and advance in the tournament.
"We as a host school in the sectional or semistate doesn't get that money. What people don't understand is that the farther you go in the tournament, the less money you make and the more it costs you."
He said the Miners and host Rockville were guaranteed $600 each for competing against each other at the regional.
"When you are the home team, you have the expenses of paying workers, officials and medical and ambulance personnel," said Karazsia.
He added the Miners would make anywhere between $4,000 for a bad gate to a normal gate of $5,000 to $6,000.
"In my 10 years as athletic director, the most we had ever made was $9,500 for the North Knox game earlier this year," he said. "For the semistate game here against Ritter, we had over 2,300 people. With the tickets being $7 instead of the $5 that we normally charge, we had gate receipts of $15,260.
"Each team was guaranteed $700, if the game did not make $1,400. But it was a given the game was going to make more than $1,400. Ritter got $1,200 for travel and food and $700 out of the game. We received our $700 plus $100 for being the host school, so we got $800. Out of the $15,000, I sent the IHSAA a check for $11,275."
Karazsia said that schools in Indiana are far more fortunate than most states.
"I have heard that Indiana is one of just two or three states that get any money back from their high school athletic associations," he said.
The reason Karazsia wanted to talk about money was that normally the senior Linton-Stockton football players are allowed to purchase their jerseys for keepsakes.
But since the company (AOI) that they bought the jerseys from five years ago is now part of Adidas, they were not going to be able to replace the jerseys.
"The kids and their parents were disappointed," said Karazsia. "But new jerseys, home and away, cost $12,000. Since we wear red pants, we have to buy new pants to go with the new red jerseys and they cost $6,000. That is a lot of money."
He added that one parent got in touch with AOI and they will be able to replace the jerseys, if at least six seniors are willing to purchase their old threads.
"I am glad that the seniors this year will have a chance to buy their jerseys, like in the past," said Karazsia. "But we are not going to be able to do this any more until we get new jerseys."
B.J. Hargis is sports editor at the Greene County Daily World. He can be reached at (812) 847-4487 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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