Why Do Some Schools Have an Athletic Booster Club vs. Clubs for Each Sport?

As you may have noticed, some schools have centralized athletic booster clubs (ABCs) and others have a dedicated club for each sport or group. 

If you use the ABC model, you may have contemplated making the switch so you can provide dedicated support to each organization at your school. To help you navigate that decision-making process, take a closer look at these two models and consider the pros and cons of ABCs.

Sports-Specific Clubs vs. Athletic Booster Clubs

Under the sports-specific model, each booster club raises funds for a single team or group. The parents, alumni, and coaches are responsible for organizing events, managing funds, and filing taxes.

The centralized model is simpler to manage in that only one entity has to file taxes, manage funds, rally support, etc. 

Unfortunately, not every team’s group of supporters has the flexibility they need to fundraise for their respective sport. As a result, the school’s most popular sports will generate most of the revenue, but they will also have to share some of these funds with other entities.

The Good and the Bad of ABCs

The athletic booster club model has benefited tens of thousands of student athletes over the years. It provides a multitude of benefits along with some drawbacks. Here’s a look at the good and bad of ABCs.

Benefits of ABCs

Logistically, managing an ABC is infinitely easier. Only one entity manages funds, schedules rallies, seeks sponsorships, represents the school’s sports teams, and files taxes.

Additionally, an athletic booster club has the ability to support smaller, less popular sports or school groups by redistributing funds. This is especially beneficial when a school is starting a new sports program or overhauling an existing one. 

As an added bonus, ABCs can encourage cross-disciplinary support. For example, let’s say that a few of your most productive booster members are relatives of a member of the varsity basketball team. If they believe in the club’s mission, they may start helping out during the other sports’ seasons as well. 

Potential Downfalls of ABCs

Sports schedule overlap is a major headache associated with the ABC model. When schedules conflict, boosters have to be more selective of which events they participate in.

The concerns of overlap have been driving many schools to adopt the sports-specific club model. Transitioning away from the ABC approach provides added flexibility and enables boosters to devote time to the clubs they are most passionate about. 

Great Tech: The Key to Thriving as an ABC

If managing your athletic booster club has become a bit tedious, don’t make the switch to sports-specific clubs just yet. While dispersing resources across all of your school’s clubs and sports can be a challenge, there are distinct advantages to ABCs that you will lose out on if you decentralize your clubs. 

Instead of transitioning away from an athletic booster club model, consider revamping your management playbook and upgrading your software. Implementing an all-in-one solution for accounting, resource tracking, scheduling, and sales processing is like adding an all-star player to your roster.

By leveling up your tech stack, you can enjoy the benefits of ABCs and make sure all school groups and teams receive the support they deserve. If you decide to change to sports-specific clubs, a versatile app can support all of your fundraising groups. Talk about a win-win!