Dec. 5, 2005

From the University of Notre Dame News and Information Office

The University of Notre Dame’s share of Fiesta Bowl revenues will be dedicated to three academic priorities, Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., the University’s president, announced today.

The estimated $14.5 million share will go toward undergraduate and graduate financial aid, library acquisitions and scientific instruments for the new Jordan Hall of Science that will open in mid-2006, Father Jenkins said.

Notre Dame will play Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl in Tempe, Ariz., on Jan. 2 as part of the Bowl Championship Series (BCS).

“We’re, of course, pleased that our team has competed at such a high level this year and is being rewarded with this bowl opportunity, but we’re also very grateful that the funds from our participation will go to address such important needs for the academic mission of the University,” Father Jenkins said.

He noted that over the past seven years the non-salary portions of the University’s budget have been essentially flat in order to cope with economic pressures that have affected Notre Dame and many other colleges and universities.

“These funds from the BCS are being made available at a very opportune time,” he said.

Under the BCS system, Notre Dame, as an independent university, keeps its entire share of the bowl proceeds. Universities that are a part of a conference share their allotments. In future years, under a new BCS arrangement, Notre Dame’s share will be reduced to $4.5 million in years that it participates in the BCS, with a guaranteed payment of $1.3 million in years that it does not qualify. Under the existing system, Notre Dame receives no funds when it does not play in a BCS game.

The Fiesta Bowl revenue is the latest example of Notre Dame athletics supporting the academic priorities of the University.

Bowl game revenue has produced more than $69 million in the past 25 years. These funds, along with a substantial portion of the proceeds from the University’s television contract with NBC, have been used to support student financial aid, and together have supported more than 2,000 scholarships.

Notre Dame’s University Libraries include the Theodore M. Hesburgh Library and 10 other libraries on campus containing nearly 3 million volumes, more than 5,000 electronic titles, some 3 million microform units, and 21,000 audiovisual items. The University’s most recent strategic plan calls for a commitment to building library collections that will “bring the best students and faculty to Notre Dame and attract international scholars.”

The Jordan Hall of Science is a 201,782-square-foot building under construction on the east side of Juniper Road, north of the Joyce Center. It will feature undergraduate laboratory space for the departments of chemistry, biochemistry, biology and physics, as well as two 250-seat lecture halls, a 150-seat multi-visualization room, an observatory, teaching labs, herbarium, greenhouse and departmental offices. It was underwritten with a leadership gift from University alumnus and Trustee John W. “Jay” Jordan II and is scheduled for completion next summer.