Bill Pennington in the New York Times looks at the production the U.S. Open has become and a couple of things jumped out:
“You learn quickly that the U.S.G.A. doesn’t mess around; they are a well-oiled machine,” said Ron Tola, Haverford College’s director of facilities management. “I was awe-struck by the advance planning. Then again, when you go to an Open, and you walk into one of those giant buildings that they call corporate tents, you realize what you’re dealing with.You know that black walnut can really seal the deal!
“There’s black walnut furniture in those tents and every other amenity. My wife would say, ‘Give me this for my living room, and I’ll be happy.’ They call it a corporate village; it’s really a city.”
Because of that, and other reasons like golf’s popularity in the Tiger Woods era, the Open has become a cash machine for the U.S.G.A. The association does not reveal its finances, but recent federal tax records show it reported about $40 million in annual profits from its 16 championships. (The U.S.G.A. also puts on men’s, women’s and junior amateur championships as well as the United States Women’s Open.) The bulk of that profit, perhaps as much as 75 percent, comes from the United States Open.You're telling us that the Senior and Women's Opens bring in 25% of the championship profit? Please.
Oh I know, the TV money, because you know NBC takes on the U.S. Open to get to that lucrative U.S. Senior Open!
By the way, according to the annual report, the USGA netted $24 million in 2006 on championships and $31 million in 2005.