Penn State men's hockey continues to turn a profit as it plays its sixth year at Pegula Ice Arena. According to Penn State athletics' recently released annual financial reporting, the Nittany Lions made a profit of $514,094 during the 2017-18 fiscal year.
In total the program, now in its seventh year at the Division I level, has made a profit of $3.547 million over its five reported years at Pegula with the 2018-19 fiscal year still underway.
For the past two seasons the Nittany Lions have recorded just over $1.72 million in ticket sales each year and anywhere between $198,739 and $353,661 in sales from parking, concessions and merchandise.
The latest report makes for a third straight year with revenues of over $4.3 million with costs each of the past two seasons at about $3.85 million per year.
Equipment continues to be one of the most expensive aspects with costs exceeding $208,000, the only program beyond football ($540,129) in the six-figure area. Travel is also a massive expense for hockey at $704,676, which is fourth most among Penn State teams behind men's basketball ($1.4 million), football ($1.1 million) and women's basketball ($791,634). After men's hockey, the next closest for travel expenses is women's volleyball at $524,915.
Recruiting has also been a fairly cost-heavy venture at $77,784 in FY 2018 but includes a fair amount of international travel. While it pales in comparison to the $1.36 million figure by football, James Franklin's program, a $430,506 price tag attached to Pat Chambers' recruiting efforts and $160,816 for Coquese Washington's Lady Lion program are the only more expensive numbers in the department.
FY 2018: $514,094
FY 2017: $609,350
FY 2016: $764,349
FY 2015: $666,796
FY 2014: $993,392
The fluctuation in annual profits can likely be attributed to a few things. Penn State has in this same window extended and given raises to both Guy Gadowsky and assistant coach Keith Fisher. The Nittany Lions also hosted two Big Ten tournament games in 2018 which added to operational costs for an additional weekend, StateCollege.com is still waiting to hear back on how much, if any, the Big Ten helps with conference affiliated event budgeting. Penn State's postseason appearances have also likely increased travel costs as well.
FY 2014 also represents the first year at Pegula Ice Arena, a financial outlier for a handful of reasons from merchandise sales to peak interest in the program.