Have Money, Will Travel: the Quest for Top Athletes

Budgets soar, and so do coaches, as colleges beef up recruiting efforts

Nearly half of the nation's largest athletics programs have doubled or tripled their recruitment spending over the past decade, as their pursuit of elite athletes intensifies and becomes more national in scope.

Forty-eight percent of NCAA Division I athletics departments at least doubled their recruiting budgets from 1997 to 2007, according to a Chronicle analysis of financial data reported to the U.S. Department of Education. Of the 300 Division I institutions for which data were