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The Impact of College Sports Success on the Quantity and Quality of Student Applications

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  • Devin G. Pope

    ()
    (Department of Operations and Information Management, The Wharton School, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA)

  • Jaren C. Pope

    ()
    (Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics (0401), Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA 24061, USA)

Abstract

Empirical studies have produced mixed results on the relationship between a school’s sports success and the quantity and quality of students that apply to the school. This study uses two unique data sets to shed additional light on the indirect benefits that sports success provides to NCAA Division I schools. Key findings include the following: (1) football and basketball success significantly increases the quantity of applications to a school, with estimates ranging from 2% to 8% for the top 20 football schools and the top 16 basketball schools each year, (2) private schools see increases in application rates after sports success that are two to four times higher than public schools, (3) the extra applications received are composed of both low and high SAT scoring students, thus providing potential for schools to improve their admission outcomes, and (4) schools appear to exploit these increases in applications by improving both the number and the quality of incoming students.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Southern Economic Association in its journal Southern Economic Journal.

Volume (Year): 75 (2009)
Issue (Month): 3 (January)
Pages: 750–780

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Handle: RePEc:sej:ancoec:v:75:3:y:2009:p:750-780

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Web page: http://www.southerneconomic.org/
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Cited by:
  1. Malcolm Getz & John Siegfried, 2010. "What Does Intercollegiate Athletics Do To or For Colleges and Universities?," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 1005, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
  2. Philip Oreopoulos & Kjell G. Salvanes, 2011. "Priceless: The Nonpecuniary Benefits of Schooling," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 25(1), pages 159-84, Winter.
  3. Brian Jacob & Brian McCall & Kevin M. Stange, 2013. "College as Country Club: Do Colleges Cater to Students’ Preferences for Consumption?," NBER Working Papers 18745, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Smith, Jonathan, 2013. "Ova and out: Using twins to estimate the educational returns to attending a selective college," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 166-180.
  5. Pincin, Jared & Hoffer, Adam, 2013. "NCAA Athletic Departments: An Empirical Investigation of the Effects of Revenue and Conference Changes," MPRA Paper 49807, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  6. Michael L. Anderson, 2012. "The Benefits of College Athletic Success: An Application of the Propensity Score Design with Instrumental Variables," NBER Working Papers 18196, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Philip Oreopoulos & Kjell G. Salvanes, 2009. "How large are returns to schooling? Hint: Money isn't everything," NBER Working Papers 15339, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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