Ohio State, Texas Headline College Football's Most Valuable Programs

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistSeptember 21, 2017

COLUMBUS, OH - SEPTEMBER 16:  Head Coach Urban Meyer of the Ohio State Buckeyes watches his team play against the Army Golden Knights at Ohio Stadium on September 16, 2017 in Columbus, Ohio.  (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

Alabama may be the premier college football program in the country, but it's not the most valuable. A Wall Street Journal article valued Ohio State at more than $1.51 billion, dwarfing all other programs in terms of financial power.

Texas ($1.24 billion) and Oklahoma ($1 billion) also topped the $1 billion mark (h/t Eleven Warriors). Alabama ($930,000) and LSU ($910,000) rounded out the top five.

Ohio State would rank last among all NFL teams in terms of value. Forbes lists the Buffalo Bills as being worth $1.6 billion. 

That said, the Buckeyes' financial strength continues to show football's power. Ohio State would rank as Forbes' eighth-most valuable NBA franchise and the 12th-most valuable MLB franchise. 

The figures in the Wall Street Journal article were based on a study by Indiana University-Purdue University Columbus associate finance professor Ryan Brewer, who valued the programs as if they were a professional sports franchise.

Obviously, there are some seismic differences here. College football programs make massive profits in large part because they do not pay their players' salaries. Whereas there is some offset in team valuations based on the amount owners have to pay players, there is no such expense here. The offset in profits often goes to funding less popular sports across the university instead.