"Notre Dame would have a decrease in bowl money because it would have to share it with other schools."
"Notre Dame gets a disproportionate amount of money from the BCS."
First the facts: Notre Dame receives 1/66 of the BCS money, about $1.3 million, every year it does not make a BCS bowl (there are 65 BCS teams) and $4.5 million, the amount of money a second team from a conference receives, any time it plays in one of the games.
If it does not play in a BCS bowl, it can play in the Champs Sports Bowl (aka the new Gator Bowl) for $2.4 million once in the next four years. As a reference, every Big Ten team received $3.3 million in bowl money this year.
How do we compare these figures? Let's look over a four-year period. A Big Ten team would receive $13.2 million.
Suppose* that ND goes to the BCS once (11-1), the Champs Sports once (9-3), the Independence Bowl paying $1 million (8-4), and no bowl in the fourth year (6-6). Over this period the school would receive $3.9 million in default BCS money and $7.9 million in bowl appearance money, totaling $11.8 million.
So why does Notre Dame receive less bowl money than Indiana (who presumably went to zero bowls in the time period)?
In short, bowls favor conferences that can promise a team each year. Also, the conference Notre Dame has chosen to align with for bowl bids (Big East) has by far the worst selection of any of the major conferences. For example, next year the Big Ten will have three bowls with payouts greater than the Champs Sports, not counting any BCS appearances.
The end result of this discussion is that the BCS is roughly neutral and bowl payouts strongly favor conferences (that are not the Big East).
*Some readers might think that this estimation is due to an unrealistic expectation of Notre Dame's win/loss record.
For those readers who think it is too low, just remember this fact: The best four years in recent history for ND were '88-'91, when they won 40 regular season games. However, in no other non-overlapping four-year period since Ara Parseghian was coach did ND win more than 34 games, which is the number I use for my scenario.
For those who think it is too high, consider it as a demonstration that even if ND achieves this record, its bowl revenues are still less than any Big Ten team.