Best Colleges For Sports Fans

Score a home run by going to a sports school and still earn a bachelors degree that pays. Find out which sports colleges produce the highest-earning graduates.

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Bachelor's Only
All Alumni
RankSchool NameSchool TypeEarly Career Pay
Mid-Career Pay
% High Meaning
% STEM Degrees
Rank:1School Name:United States Naval AcademySchool Type:Engineering, Liberal Arts School, Sober School, For Sports Fans, State SchoolEarly Career Pay:$80,100Mid-Career Pay:$152,800% High Meaning:64%% STEM Degrees:58%
Rank:2School Name:Harvard UniversitySchool Type:Ivy League, Private School, Research University, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$74,800Mid-Career Pay:$146,800% High Meaning:54%% STEM Degrees:19%
Rank:3School Name:Stanford UniversitySchool Type:Engineering, Private School, Research University, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$79,000Mid-Career Pay:$145,200% High Meaning:56%% STEM Degrees:51%
Rank:4School Name:United States Military AcademySchool Type:Liberal Arts School, Sober School, For Sports Fans, State SchoolEarly Career Pay:$80,200Mid-Career Pay:$144,000% High Meaning:61%% STEM Degrees:39%
Rank:5School Name:Princeton UniversitySchool Type:Ivy League, Private School, Research University, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$75,200Mid-Career Pay:$139,400% High Meaning:48%% STEM Degrees:48%
Rank:6School Name:Yale UniversitySchool Type:Ivy League, Private School, Research University, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$70,300Mid-Career Pay:$138,300% High Meaning:53%% STEM Degrees:22%
Rank:7School Name:United States Air Force AcademySchool Type:Liberal Arts School, Sober School, For Sports Fans, State SchoolEarly Career Pay:$76,300Mid-Career Pay:$138,100% High Meaning:69%% STEM Degrees:43%
Rank:8School Name:Santa Clara UniversitySchool Type:Private School, Religious, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$69,900Mid-Career Pay:$134,700% High Meaning:44%% STEM Degrees:29%
Rank:9School Name:Lehigh UniversitySchool Type:Engineering, Party School, Private School, Research University, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$69,500Mid-Career Pay:$134,100% High Meaning:45%% STEM Degrees:52%
Rank:10School Name:University of PennsylvaniaSchool Type:Ivy League, Private School, Research University, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$72,800Mid-Career Pay:$133,900% High Meaning:41%% STEM Degrees:21%
Rank:11School Name:Georgia Institute of Technology-Main CampusSchool Type:Engineering, Research University, For Sports Fans, State SchoolEarly Career Pay:$72,700Mid-Career Pay:$133,400% High Meaning:48%% STEM Degrees:80%
Rank:12School Name:Duke UniversitySchool Type:Private School, Religious, Research University, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$71,100Mid-Career Pay:$132,100% High Meaning:50%% STEM Degrees:26%
Rank:13School Name:University of California-BerkeleySchool Type:Research University, For Sports Fans, State SchoolEarly Career Pay:$70,700Mid-Career Pay:$131,800% High Meaning:49%% STEM Degrees:36%
Rank:14School Name:Dartmouth CollegeSchool Type:Ivy League, Private School, Research University, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$71,500Mid-Career Pay:$130,900% High Meaning:44%% STEM Degrees:35%
Rank:15School Name:Colgate UniversitySchool Type:Liberal Arts School, Party School, Private School, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$68,400Mid-Career Pay:$130,600% High Meaning:41%% STEM Degrees:26%
Rank:16School Name:University of Notre DameSchool Type:Private School, Religious, Research University, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$67,000Mid-Career Pay:$130,500% High Meaning:45%% STEM Degrees:28%
Rank:17School Name:Rice UniversitySchool Type:Private School, Research University, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$71,000Mid-Career Pay:$129,500% High Meaning:50%% STEM Degrees:45%
Rank:18School Name:Cornell UniversitySchool Type:Ivy League, Private School, Research University, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$70,100Mid-Career Pay:$128,200% High Meaning:45%% STEM Degrees:43%
Rank:19School Name:Brown UniversitySchool Type:Ivy League, Private School, Research University, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$68,200Mid-Career Pay:$127,600% High Meaning:45%% STEM Degrees:43%
Rank:20School Name:Columbia University in the City of New YorkSchool Type:Ivy League, Private School, Research University, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$71,400Mid-Career Pay:$126,800% High Meaning:45%% STEM Degrees:30%
Rank:21School Name:Manhattan CollegeSchool Type:Private School, Religious, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$64,000Mid-Career Pay:$125,700% High Meaning:46%% STEM Degrees:40%
Rank:22School Name:Bucknell UniversitySchool Type:Liberal Arts School, Party School, Private School, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$66,700Mid-Career Pay:$122,900% High Meaning:40%% STEM Degrees:40%
Rank:23School Name:Lafayette CollegeSchool Type:Liberal Arts School, Private School, Religious, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$66,500Mid-Career Pay:$122,500% High Meaning:37%% STEM Degrees:47%
Rank:24School Name:Georgetown UniversitySchool Type:Private School, Religious, Research University, For Sports FansEarly Career Pay:$66,400Mid-Career Pay:$122,200% High Meaning:42%% STEM Degrees:14%
Rank:25School Name:New Jersey Institute of TechnologySchool Type:Engineering, Research University, For Sports Fans, State SchoolEarly Career Pay:$64,600Mid-Career Pay:$121,300% High Meaning:51%% STEM Degrees:75%

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College Student

College isn’t just about academics. Sure, studying is important, but there are other aspects of college life that draw students to particular universities. For many die-hard sports fans, a strong football or basketball team can be a major factor in college selection. The PayScale College Salary Report ranks the country’s top schools with Division 1 basketball or football programs by alumni salary so that you can find a college with high earning potential and a winning record.

Harvard is known for its world-class academics, but it’s also the home of some excellent athletes, like basketball star Jeremy Lin and NFL quarterback Ryan Fitzgerald. The Harvard Crimson prove that athletic and academic excellence can coexist, and they top our list of the top schools for sports fans by salary potential.

The United States Naval Academy (USMA) at Annapolis faces off in the big Army-Navy game every year, they can at least gloat over the fact that the Navy crushes the United States Military Academy (USMA) at West Point, where alumni earn a median mid-career salary of well over $100,000.

Other surprisingly high-earning schools famous for their jocks include the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, the Cal Bears, and the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame.

If you were to judge some of the most famous college sports rivalries by the highest-earning graduates, you would see Duke’s Blue Devils beat the University of North Carolina Tar Heels; the Texas A&M Aggies beat the University of Texas Longhorns; and the USC Trojans beat the UCLA Bruins.