Tim Sullivan over at the Courier-Journal points out a big disadvantage in recruiting that hasn’t really been discussed since a change in legislation early this year.
Now, after putting it to a vote in January, the Power 5 conferences can increase the value of athletic scholarships to the full cost of attendance, meaning student-athletes on a cost-of-attendance scholarship will receive an additional stipend for personal expenses. That stipend varies from school to school depending on what the scholarship covers and what it actually costs to attend the university. The difference at Kentucky (the amount the student-athlete will receive for expenses) is substantially lower than other schools around the SEC, which could play a big role in the recruitment of a blue chip prospect.
As Sullivan writes, “If the University of Kentucky is to remain competitive in recruiting athletes, it may need the merchants of Lexington to raise their prices.”
Here are a few examples from around the league:
School, Old Scholarship/New Scholarship (Difference)
Kentucky, $21,464/$23,748 ($2,284)
Mississippi, $18,204/$22,704 ($4,500)
Mississippi State, $17,294/$22,420 ($5,126)
South Carolina, $21,414/$25,565 ($4,151)
Tennessee, $23,710/$29,376 ($5,666)
For a complete list of schools from the ACC and SEC, and a good quote from Oscar Combs, check out the Courier-Journal here.