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Texas A&M, Texas headline USA Today Sports annual athletic department revenue list

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The Aggies generated more revenue than the ‘Horns for the 2015-16 cycle, but there’s a catch.

DKR Texas Memorial Stadium

No athletic department in the nation generated more revenue for the 2015-16 academic year than the Texas A&M Aggies, with the Texas Longhorns just a few million dollars behind as a close second.

USA Today Sports released its annual athletic department revenue list on Thursday with the Aggies serving as the headliner after generating $194,388,450. The Longhorns ranked second on the list with a total revenue of $187,981,158.

Ohio State is a distant third, generating fewer than $17 million less than Texas, while Alabama and Michigan round of the nation’s top five college athletics revenue machines with $164,009,745 and $163,850,616, respectively.

USA Today Sports

If you’re wondering why Texas isn’t No. 1, as it so often is, keep in mind that USA Today Sports considers stadium contributions and donations for what was totaled as a $483,888,885 renovation to Kyle Field as revenue. The same was the case when Phil Knight, the founder of Nike, donated $95 million to Oregon to upgrade the athletics complex on campus in 2013-14.

Oregon’s revenue has since dropped considerably — the Ducks are No. 23 in USA Today Sports’ list — as will Texas A&M’s the following cycle once the stadium renovations are no longer being reflected, as noted by George Schroeder of USA Today Sports.

Texas A&M will likely remain in the top 10 of total revenue generated once the stadium contributions are taken off the books, but expect Texas to once again hold the No. 1 spot, as it traditionally does aside from other programs receiving massive donations for renovations or other construction projects.