UGA Athletic Board moves $30M in search of better return

ATHENS – The University of Georgia Athletic Association’s board of directors voted Friday to invest $30 million from cash reserves through the UGA Foundation, which manages non-athletic donor funds for the school, in an attempt to get a higher rate of return.

The UGA Athletic Association currently has about $68 million in reserves, money that it says is in the bank drawing little interest.

The plan is to put slightly less than half of the reserves “to work for us in maybe a more aggressive stance to help us meet both current and future long-term needs of the association,” Tim Burgess, UGA senior vice president for finance and administration and Athletic Association treasurer, told the board before the vote.

Board member Jeffrey Dorfman, a UGA professor, spoke and voted against the action.

“I think before we move $30 million of Athletic Association money into a different form of investment, the people that are going to manage that investment ought to come here and make a presentation to the board,” he said.

Dorfman also questioned whether the UGA Foundation’s investment-strategy goals match the Athletic Association’s, which he said are shorter term.

“I don’t disagree at all with maybe moving some of our money to a more aggressive investment strategy,” he said, “but I think we might want to look at having a separate investment advisor than the UGA Foundation.”

The measure passed easily by voice vote but — unlike most matters that come before the Athletic Board — not unanimously.

UGA president Michael Adams supported the measure.

Athletic director Greg McGarity said getting a better rate of return on some of the reserve funds could help cover expenses like one the board approved Friday — $1.6 million to replace air-conditioning and heating systems in 50 suites on the south side of Sanford Stadium — without dipping into principal.

Also at Friday’s regularly scheduled meeting, the board:

  • Heard a report that the Athletic Association finished fiscal year 2012 on June 30 with $91.7 million in revenue and $88.2 million in expenditures (including debt service), leaving $3.5 million that was added to reserves.
  • Voted to change banks on a letter of credit related to the association’s bonded debt, a move Burgess said will save $592,000 over three years.
  • Heard brief presentations from new gymnastics coach Danna Durante; new women’s golf coach Josh Brewer; swimming coach Jack Bauerle, who discussed the success of UGA swimmers in the London Olympics; and men’s basketball coach Mark Fox, who discussed his team’s recent trip to Italy.
  • Heard a glowing account from Adams of last week’s football trip to Missouri, the SEC newcomer that Adams said provided maybe the best hospitality he had ever seen to a visiting team.   “I hope we can treat them with the same level of respect [next season in Athens] that they treated us,” Adams said. “If we could set a standard of conduct where we really do view people as opponents rather than enemies, we’d all be better off in the long run. So I’m hopeful we can set that kind of tone – and if some of it happened to rub off on our relationship with some others, it wouldn’t be a bad thing either.” Adams added: “I think we can get to that with most of the schools in the SEC. We may not get there with all of them. “

– Tim Tucker

39 comments Add your comment

bardawg

September 14th, 2012
8:56 pm

bardawg

September 14th, 2012
9:02 pm

And I’ve got to agree with Adams , if it’s a better return on investment ,it would be sort of foolish not to persue a different avenue (provided that it’s not betting on Iranian oil futures).

Max Sizemore

September 14th, 2012
9:04 pm

One would think that board members would be smarter than that. Give $30 million of your money for someone else to control and not knowing what the investment strategy is? Seriously? Do they really think it’s going to be easy to improve the return without some serious risk? At least Mr.Dorfman did the right thing.

Fridawg

September 14th, 2012
9:05 pm

“We may not get there with all of them.” I LOVE that even Mike Adams recognizes the level of animosity that exists in the SEC. My money is on SC as the one group that wouldn’t get along.

Fridawg

September 14th, 2012
9:07 pm

By the way, the UGA Foundation is a great organization that has allowed the University to raise money without the red tape of a state institution. I think they got started about 10-15 years ago. They’ve been able to fast track a ton of projects by getting around the state requirements.

kingdaddy

September 14th, 2012
9:16 pm

Sounds like he’s making a withdrawal from the bank on his way out the door. I don’t trust him and would watch him like a red-tailed hawk…

I dropped my fried twinkie

September 14th, 2012
9:22 pm

Invest that $30 mil in UGa’s very own Bail Bonds Company. The drunk students alone can guarantee a high ROI.

Practice

September 14th, 2012
9:28 pm

Can we please build an indoor practice facility for football!

I dropped my fried twinkie

September 14th, 2012
9:49 pm

UGa has an indoor practice facility for football. It is called the Swimming Pool. LOL

Just Sayin

September 14th, 2012
10:22 pm

Spend some of that cash to double Grantham’s salary and get a new offensive system. Keep Bobo as QB coach.

100,000

September 14th, 2012
10:24 pm

Will we ever go over 100,000 in seating capacity?

Have a nice day

September 14th, 2012
10:34 pm

MAYBE Coach Donnan could help with the investment. He has experience in investments but I liked him better as a coach.

100,000+

September 14th, 2012
11:15 pm

Add seats=more revenue

I dropped my fried twinkie

September 14th, 2012
11:17 pm

100,000+
September 14th, 2012
11:15 pm

Add seats=more revenue……………………………….not if they are empty for teams like Buffalo, Ga Sou and Florida Atlantic.

Under The Bleachers

September 14th, 2012
11:22 pm

I dropped my fried twinkie

September 14th, 2012
9:49 pm
UGa has an indoor practice facility for football. It is called the Swimming Pool. LOL

@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@2

That was funny.

100,000

September 14th, 2012
10:24 pm
Will we ever go over 100,000 in seating capacity

Not if UGA does not schedule better competition out of conference, there will not be 75000 there on saturday.

Practice

September 14th, 2012
9:28 pm
Can we please build an indoor practice facility for football!

You meant to ask: Can you build the other two thirds of the indoor practice facility?

7576DAWG

September 15th, 2012
12:38 am

Missouri may be setting a standard. I can be civil to Georgia Tech and Florida but no way I change the way I feel about Auburn.

Attention, Greg McGarity

September 15th, 2012
12:43 am

Fantastic AD now at UGA, but using the Florida model to prop up the record (playing Ga Southern, FAU, and Buffalo ) will help with everything but attendance. Its not coincidental that I am still getting email from the athletic dept selling tickets to games. People would rather watch it on their HD tv at home than pay 40$ per ticket to come to Athens and watch a subpar opponent. Not to mention the harassment from the UGA police, who apparently would rather ask middle aged fans, quietly minding their business, to pour out their drink from the cup it’s in than ask drunks to turn down their music, pull over stop sign runners, etc…

Jimmy

September 15th, 2012
1:03 am

“If we could set a standard of conduct where we really do view people as opponents rather than enemies, we’d all be better off in the long run.”

Are you freaking kidding me?! Sad part is I can’t tell who said this, Adams or Obama.

And people wonder why the country is heading in the direction it is. Unbelievable.

P. Bull Terrier

September 15th, 2012
1:19 am

The Bail Bonds jokes are old and boring, but I have to give “I dropped my fried twinkie” credit for the Indoor Practice Facility/Swimming Pool line. That was original and funny.

Jimmy has a tiny jimmy

September 15th, 2012
1:56 am

@Jimmy, thank you for finding a way to blame the University of Georgia’s attitude towards visiting opponents and their fans on Obama. Wow.

Paddy

September 15th, 2012
7:17 am

Max Sizemoore………………This is not a blind trust!! What makes you think the Board would not have a say in how the money is invested? These guys already have 93 Mil in reserve. They didn’t accumulated this vast amount by picking up cans by the side of the road!!!!!!!!!

65dawg

September 15th, 2012
7:54 am

Adams needs to work on his own fans first. When introduced in pre-game festivities last Saturday in Missouri, he was loudly booed by his “own” fans. Mizzou fans around us were mystified, to say the least, at UGA fans booing their own President!

Big time?? Not

September 15th, 2012
8:00 am

Adams is a dick. Mizzou fans were great which goes to show they aren’t SEC ready! Ha

Four tickets four hot dogs four cokes

The Factor

September 15th, 2012
8:51 am

I agree with Adams about our fans ( some of them who act like idiots). But Adams has always set the right example by bulling his way to whatever he wants without an ounce of diplomacy, right? Just ask Vince Dooley…I also wish we could lose about a10th of our fans who love UGA for nothing but football – many, not all, of them are the problem with campus trash and acting like fools..

What's a dwag?

September 15th, 2012
9:01 am

Tom Dawg 1

September 15th, 2012
9:14 am

Go Dawgs, I hate any thing that wears orange, yellow, blue, white. any thing but red and black.

Rick

September 15th, 2012
9:24 am

1.6 million for AC repair in skyboxes….. LOL!!!

That is somewhat like an executive bonus.

I dropped my fried twinkie

September 15th, 2012
9:29 am

Rick….The A/C thing was funny. Watching from a box is like your living room.

TY

September 15th, 2012
9:39 am

As far as attendance for a Georgia Southern game. If you will look back on those games, everyone of them were sellouts and tons of Southern fans were all over the place. The record attendance number was a Georgia Southern game. If you added the total number of seats to 110,000 and scheduled Georgia Southern, the stadium would be full. UGA gets a great deal paying them only $400K to come to play the game. How much concessions will UGA lose today playing FAU if only 75K attend. UGA will make up for that loss when GA Southern comes to town and their fans show up.

Norris

September 15th, 2012
9:59 am

Nothing proves a low IQ more than someone always bringing Obama into conversations about the dawgs. WTF!

That said: Go DAWGS!!

I dropped my fried twinkie

September 15th, 2012
10:06 am

If Obama gets reelected you might want to check this site. You can build a cheap home and live off the grid.

http://www.HomesteadingSurvivalism.com

I dropped my fried twinkie

September 15th, 2012
10:07 am

Haha just for you NORRIS

[...] Athletic board seeks better return on hefty reserve funds [...]

azdawg

September 15th, 2012
10:53 am

Beware of greeks bearing gifts. Ask some of these folks/munincipalities that listened to investment bankers only to lose all their money on risky investments. Some folks never learn.

Coach

September 15th, 2012
12:24 pm

Question to Tom Dawg 1: When does UGA where red and black?

Bill Park

September 15th, 2012
2:03 pm

The real question is WHY are a/c units in the luxury suites being replaced in the first place? How old are those units?

Papa

September 15th, 2012
5:37 pm

Good grief !! I think everyone the UGAA’s Board of Directors should be required to watch “The Inside Job” and “the Heist” before a cent is put into the hands of an investment manager. If they believe that being a prestigious foundation or a State agency implies immunity against the greed demonstrated time and time again by those offering financial services, they must acknowledge that hasty and foolish decisions will be passed on to ticket holders and the other services that are provided.

Matt

September 15th, 2012
9:24 pm

1.6million for 50 suites comes to 32k a unit to replace A/C units. Sounds like UGA is getting ripped off.

Charles

September 16th, 2012
11:27 am

As long this Athletic Director continues to schedule these cream puffs which two out of the three games thus far have been. Do you really think Georgia is ever going to be taken seriously until they start playing some real real division 1 teams. At least the former Athletic Director scheduled some worthy opponents. The win loss record may look good but that is all it worth. Even these cream puffs seem to be holding there own. You want to get some excitement in the program quit scheduling and then cancelling teams. Then schedule these cream puffs.