Efficient spending makes for quality Storm athletics

by Scott Schleisman

Since the beginning of the season, Buxton Stadium has had a new look.

The new scoreboard can be attributed to a very successful fund-raising campaign. No institutional funds went towards the new scoreboard with all of the money coming from fund-raising events like the annual Storm Golf Classic.

“Fund raising is one of two main sources of income for Simpson athletics,” said business manager for Storm athletics and softball coach Henry Christowski. “The other primary source is the general fund.”

The general fund is the total amount of money that Simpson College divides among all of the organizations – athletic and academic.

The athletic department then divides the money it has received among all of the athletic teams. A team receives money based on its total expenditures. Student employment, insurance, information, facilities and equipment are some of the many items that each athletic team has to pay for.

The previous year’s success doesn’t influence how much money a team will receive. The athletic department looks at the average expenditures for that sport over the last 10 years, and then decides on how much money to give the team.

For every $1,000 a sport has to spend, the athletic department gives the sport at least $714, or 71.4 percent of that $1,000. The remaining amount of money the teams need must be acquired through fund raisers by each individual team.

Travel costs are not included in a sport team’s overall budget, but there is a separate travel account the athletic department uses for each team’s traveling expenses.

If a team has a special trip to go on, such as tournament out of state over spring break, each student on the team is required to raise $200 to pay for their expenses. The rest of the cost is covered by that sport’s budget.

With all of these expenditures, it can be hard for an athletic team to budget its money, however Simpson does it best of all in the Iowa Conference.

Simpson finished second last year in the All-Sports Trophy race, even though Simpson athletics receive less money from the school’s general fund than any other college in the conference.

“Efficient budgeting is something that Storm coaches pride themselves on,” said athletic director and head baseball coach John Sirianni. “Across the board, whether it be academics or student activities, the Simpson staff is efficient with the money they receive.”

For example, the softball team uses several fund raisers to help increase their budget. The softball players can be found selling Storm spirit cards, teaching high school softball clinics and promoting magazine sales.

“The price of equipment and many other things have gone up tremendously over the past years, so to get the best equipment and do the things we want to do, the girls work hard raising money for the program,” Christowski said.

According to Christowski, raising money isn’t the only way to balance the budget.

“Another thing a lot of teams do is to try and host as many games as possible. This way there are no traveling expenses or meals. It costs more than you would think to feed an athletic team.”

According to Sirianni, the Simpson athletic department accomplishes a lot with the money it receives. With championship programs in many sports, Simpson performs well despite receiving half as much money as some other teams in the conference.