Sports & Rec

How will Boise State and Jeramiah Dickey come up with $300 million?

Photo courtesy of Boise State Athletics

How do you quickly raise money to fund a $300 million project? 

Ask Boise State Athletic Director Jeramiah Dickey.

With the recent announcement of the new Athletics Master Village at Boise State, many people deemed it a “stretch” not just because of the drastic changes on campus, but because of the finances involved. 

“This ‘vision’ is unrealistic,” Jordan Kaye wrote in an Idaho Press article. “Everything unveiled [for the Athletics Master Village] … will not come to fruition. That is a guarantee.”

After the $300 million budget cost was announced, students are starting to wonder where the money is going to come from.

Fortunately, when it comes to fundraising, Dickey has a plan.

Dickey announced on Aug. 22 that Boise State Athletics set the department’s all-time single-year fundraising record with $24.1 million in support during the 2022 fiscal year. 

This year’s fundraising total saw a 66% growth in just one year, raising from $14.5 million to $24.1 million.

With Dickey’s grand plan, the $300 million will come over time. For now, raising $24 million is a small step in the right direction.

The announcement comes on the heels of the university-wide celebration of an overall institutional annual fundraising record of $56.5 million for Boise State University.

This isn’t the first time that Dickey came up big in times of need. 

Dickey was named associate vice president for Athletic Operations at Baylor University in 2017. Before that position, Dickey was hired at the University of Houston as the associate director for development and promoted as the Cougars’ deputy athletics director.

At the University of Houston, Dickey cemented his role as the “master of fundraising” after he set fundraising records for seven consecutive years. 

More than 4,000 Cougar Pride members contributed $6.4 million during the 2014-2015 fiscal year. This topped the previous year’s $5.2 million in donations from that same group.

athletics master village, aerial
[Rendering of Athletics Master Village, aerial shot.]
Photo courtesy of Boise State Athletics

As a part of the University of Houston’s stadium opening committee, Dickey also secured a 10-year, $15 million naming rights partnership with Texas Dow Employees Credit Union (TDECU). This agreement ranked third nationally among all collegiate facilities for corporate naming agreements. 

Not only did Dickey make an impact on the total funding amount, but he also helped set records in game attendance.

In Dickey’s first year, the University of Houston sold a then-record 15,022 football season tickets, and baseball season ticket sales increased by 185%. 

During his second year, Houston sold 25,311 football season tickets and received a record-high 38,953 fans in attendance.

Dickey also loves bringing in fans as much as he loves spending money at Boise State.

Boise State had record-breaking attendance last season after being criticized from Bleacher Report for not being able to fill the stands.

The football team recorded a new single game home attendance record in their game against Nevada after 37,426 fans were in attendance.

“Records are meant to be broken,” Dickey said in a tweet after the game.

The gifts and commitments that aided Dickey’s wild success is due in part to the Boise Athletic Association annual scholarship fund, the philanthropic giving to the Lyle Smith Society, sport-specific enhancement funds and annual athletic endowment distributions.

Even with this year’s record-shattering donations, there is still much left to do to reach the athletic department’s $300 million goal.

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