Topeka Kansas University Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little on Thursday said safeguards have been established to avoid another ticket scandal.
“We do have more controls in place,” Gray-Little told a crowd of about 100 people at the Topeka Rotary Club meeting.
In response to a question from the audience, Gray-Little said KU has increased auditing and other checks on ticket sales.
“Anytime you have a program where you have a large amount of cash or tickets ... being handled by a wide variety of people, it is very difficult to keep absolute tabs on that,” she said.
Last year, the KU athletics department was rocked by the indictment of five people who prosecutors said stole and sold more than $2 million in KU football and basketball tickets. Four of the five have been sentenced, including a former Kansas Athletics director of tickets operations, Charlette Blubaugh, who was sentenced last week to 57 months in prison.
In response to another question about how important the athletics department was in driving financial support of KU, Gray-Little said that was difficult to determine.
“The athletics program helps define the university community,” she said. “It increases students’ commitment to the university and their continuing commitment as alumni.”
She also noted that the athletics department was its own corporation separate from the university.
On the issue of state funding of KU, Gray-Little said KU has had to do more with less state funding during the past couple of years because of budget cuts. That has meant increases in tuition and an increase in efforts to lure research dollars and contributions, she said.
KU is expecting flat or slightly less than flat funding from the Legislature this year, she said.
“I expect that to be the best thing we can expect for many years to come,” she said.