Maryland and Under Armour 2

Maryland extends with Under Armour, debuts “Star Spangled” uniforms

The University of Maryland has extended its relationship with Under Armour for an additional 10 years through 2023-2024. Under Armour founder Kevin Plank is a University of Maryland graduate, so it’s no big surprise for Maryland has re-signed. The previous contract expired last December, but it called for a cash payments of $1.475 million annually and a product allowance of $1.9 million annually. The copy I have also has a handwritten notation by the cash provision that they receive an additional $368,750 per quarter.

No word yet on the money involved in the new Maryland contract. Notre Dame landed the nation’s largest apparel contract last year from Under Armour, worth a reported $90 million over 10 years, or $9 million annually in cash, equipment and apparel. Auburn, another Under Armour school, will receive $1.9 million in cash this year and $2.5 million in product. Fellow SEC and Under Armour school South Carolina is slated to receive $1.1 million in cash and $2.1 million in product.

Not only was Maryland’s last contract signed five years ago, but its athletics teams have since moved from the ACC to the Big Ten, where Maryland is only the second Under Armour school, joining Northwestern. It’ll be interesting to see what sort of bump Maryland gets with the new contract. Don’t expect Notre Dame money, but they should get a respectable increase.

The announcement of the new contract was accompanied by the unveiling of new “Star Spangled” uniforms for this weekend (see gallery below).

“The University of Maryland is an integral part of Under Armour’s history, culture and identity,” said Matt Mirchin, Executive Vice President, Global Marketing, Under Armour. “We look forward to continuing this remarkable partnership over the next decade and beyond, outfitting the Terrapin student-athletes and fans in the most innovative performance gear in the market.”

“We are excited to continue our outstanding partnership with Under Armour as we usher in a new era of Maryland athletics in the Big Ten Conference,” said Kevin Anderson, University of Maryland Athletic Director. “Kevin Plank and his entire team have been strong supporters of our athletic programs and our student-athletes who proudly don the Under Armour brand. This decade-long agreement showcases Under Armour’s unwavering commitment to the University of Maryland and our fans.”

This weekend, Maryland football players will sport historically-inspired uniforms paying homage to the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Baltimore at Fort McHenry and the Star Spangled Banner. Sneak peak photos below.

Need tickets for Maryland football?

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College athletics admins

Do you handle social media within an athletic department?

Do you handle any social media within an intercollegiate athletic department? If so, then we want you!

I’m writing an eBook with a colleague at Reputation Ink on social media within intercollegiate athletics, which I hope will be a resource for the industry. However, I need your help. If you’re willing to take a quick survey, please fill out the contact form below to receive a link to the survey. At this time, we only need participants who work within an athletic department.

Thank you in advance!

College Football Mktg Week 1

College football marketing and public relations: Week 1 hits and misses

MichelleWie-2After five straight days of watching college football, which began with last Thursday night’s surprise rout at South Carolina by Texas A&M, I woke up Tuesday morning with Lil Jon’s “Turn Down For What” in my head…except the words I heard were “Third Down For What.” That’s because University of Tennessee, in a brilliant marketing move, spoofed the song and played it every time the other team was on third down. There was no missing it, even on television.

It got me thinking about some of the wins and misses I saw in terms of marketing, promotion and public relations in the first week of the college football season.

Click here to see the hits and misses on my PR firm’s blog, INKsights.

Texas A&M Won't Produce No. 7 Jerseys

Texas A&M won’t produce No. 7 jerseys

Texas A&M Won't Produce No. 7 JerseysTexas A&M declining to produce No. 7 football jerseys might be an unpopular decision with fans, but it’s the smart business decision. The No. 7 football jersey is worn by quarterback Kenny Hill, who had a school-record 511 passing yards in Texas A&M’s unexpected route of South Carolina to kick off the season last Thursday.

It’s no surprise there’s some demand from retailers to carry a No. 7 jersey, but there’s absolutely no good business reason for Texas A&M producing it. The revenue simply isn’t worth the risk.

Click here to continue reading about jersey revenue in my piece on Outkick the Coverage.

Neutral Site Game Payouts

Neutral Site College Football Game Payouts

Neutral Site Game PayoutsWhile technically the FBS football season kicked off last night with Abilene Christian at Georgia State, tonight we get some ranked teams and the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff Game!

For the past few years, the college football season has always started with neutral-site games. The two major ones have been the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff Classic (since 2008) and the Cowboys Classic (since 2009). This year there will be two Chick-Fil-A Kickoff games: Ole Miss vs. Boise State (tonight – August 28) and Alabama vs. West Virginia (August 30). There will also be one Cowboys Classic game which pits Florida State against Oklahoma State (August 30).

Neutral site games have proven to be extremely lucrative for the teams participating in them. When teams venture to the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, GA for the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff Classic or AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX for the Cowboys Classic teams are typically giving up a lot; not only are they missing out on a potential home game, but they also lose all the revenues associated with hosting a home game such as ticket sales and concession sales. In addition, the surrounding area loses out on the revenues it usually makes when thousands of fans and alumni come into town for game day weekend. As such, payouts from these neutral site games have seemingly been enough to persuade teams to miss out on these potential earnings.

In last year’s Chick-Fil-A Kickoff, there was a total team payout to Alabama and Virginia Tech of $5 million. Typically, Alabama makes millions per game at Bryant-Denny Stadium, which seats over 101,000 people. Yet, the allure of being on center stage in a big city, coupled with the generous payouts has made playing in these games worthwhile. Alabama itself has played in 3 Chick-Fil-A Classics and 1 Cowboys Classic to date and is scheduled to play in one of this year’s Chick-Fil-A Classic games and next year’s Cowboys Classic. Furthermore, these games also have the potential to lure in key recruits as future players may be excited by the chance of playing for a big time school in a big time city.

Chick-Fil-A Kickoff

Year

Teams

Total Payout (Millions)

2008 Alabama vs. Clemson  $4.2
2009 Alabama vs. Virginia Tech $4.5
2010 LSU vs. North Carolina $3.6
2011 Boise State vs. Georgia $3.7
2012 Tennessee vs. NC State $4.2
2012 Auburn vs. Clemson $4.8
2013 Alabama vs. Virginia Tech $5.0
2014 Ole Miss vs. Boise State  $3.1
2014 Alabama vs. West Virginia $6.4 (expected)
2015 Louisville vs. Auburn  TBD

The payout for the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff Classic has increased over the past few years. In 2012, one game has total team payout of $4.2 million, whereas the other game had a total team payout of $4.8 million. This year, the total team payout for the Alabama and West Virginia game is expected to be $6.4 million. However, in 2008 and 2009, the total team payouts were $4.0 million and $4.5 million respectively, and then decreased in 2010 and 2011, to $3.6 million and $3.7 million respectively. Thus, there has not always been an upward trend in determining payouts. To determine the payout, Chick-Fil-A keeps its $5.5 budget and then returns the revenues above the budget to the participating teams.

Numbers for the Cowboys Classic have been more difficult to confirm, but here’s what we do know….

Cowboys Classic

Year Teams Per Team Breakdown (Millions)

Total Payout (Millions)

2009 BYU vs. Oklahoma
2010 TCU vs. Oregon State $1.0
2011 LSU vs. Oregon $3.5/$2.0 $5.5
2012 Alabama vs. Michigan $4.7/$4.7 $9.4
2013 LSU vs. TCU ?/$3.0
2014 FSU vs. Oklahoma State
2015 Alabama vs. Wisconsin
2016 USC vs. Alabama
2017 Michigan vs. Florida $6.0/$6.0 $12

The Cowboys Classic has also seen its payouts increase over the years. In 2011, LSU earned $3.5 million and Oregon earned $2.0 million, for a total team payout of $5.5 million. In 2012, Alabama and Michigan both made $4.7 million, for a total team payout of $9.4 million. In 2017, Michigan and Florida are each expected to make $6.0 million, for an expected total team payout of $12 million.

After observing these trends, it is obvious that payouts are varying not only from team-to-team but from year-to-year. One explanation is that the more lucrative and successful teams are being paid more to participate in these games because they help generate more revenue. Another explanation is that the more a team stands to lose in revenue from giving up a home game (i.e. Michigan and Alabama due to their huge stadium capacities), the more these neutral site games are willing to payout. One thing is for certain, though: the neutral-site kickoff game, with its lucrative payouts, will be around for many more years to come.

NCAA Report Shows Gap Between Haves and Have-Nots

Revenue and Expense Gap in College Athletics

NCAA Report Shows Gap Between Haves and Have-NotsThe divide between the haves and have-nots is increasing, expense growth is outpacing revenue growth, donors are still the largest source of revenue for most programs, and sports outside of football and men’s basketball aren’t generating enough revenue to cover expenses. That’s the short version of what the NCAA’s latest revenue and expense report tells us….

Click here for some interesting details from the report in my piece for Outkick the Coverage.

Ask SportsBizMiss (1)

Ask SportsBizMiss: volleyball profit, licensing naming rights, ticket revenue and government subsidies

Ask SportsBizMiss (1)Until now, we haven’t had a mailbag feature here at BusinessofCollegeSports.com, but I do check the search terms people use to find our site almost every day. So many times I wish I could reach out to the person and see if they found what they were looking for, but I don’t actually know who searched the term or how to get in touch with them…so, I’m going to pretend they emailed me and answer a few I’ve seen over the past week.

If you want to submit a question for a future edition of “Ask SportsBizMiss,” instructions are at the bottom of this post.

Here’s a sampling of searches I’ve seen over the past week….

“volleyball program turns profit”

If you were searching for a college volleyball program that turns a profit, you probably didn’t find one. It’s extremely rare for a sport outside of football or men’s basketball to end the year with net revenue (it’s not technically correct to call it “profit” since athletic departments are nonprofit entities). I’m asked about baseball and ice hockey most often, and you can find a program here or there that has a small amount of net revenue, but I’ve never seen a volleyball program with net revenue at the end of the year.

I decided to take a look at a couple of women’s programs first. Penn State and Texas finished last season ranked #1 and #2, so I checked out their financials for women’s volleyball:

School Revenue Expense Net Revenue
Penn State $850,993 $1,395,721 -$544,728
Texas $1,387,377 $3,177,635 -$1,790,258

Unfortunately, I don’t have the time to do this for every school, but I think you get the picture.

Men’s volleyball isn’t doing any better. Penn State’s men’s team only generated $222,044 but spent $346,791.

The fact of the matter is that few (and by few, I mean a handful) of programs outside of football and men’s basketball generate any net revenue. Many don’t make enough to cover scholarships for the student athletes within that sport, much less coaching salaries, trainers, insurance, travel, etc. I wrote last year about how even the top women’s basketball programs don’t generate enough revenue to cover their expenses.

So, sorry whoever searched this, but I doubt you’ll find any volleyball programs generating net revenue.

“licensing naming rights”

If you were looking for naming rights on stadiums, I have an entire database of every deal I know of in college athletics here.

If you were looking for the more recent issue of student athletes licensing their naming rights, the O’Bannon ruling didn’t give student athletes the right to license their own name individually. I think I analyzed O’Bannon from just about every angle and on just about every platform possible:

“ticket revenue Florida State”

This one is easy: $20.3 million total, $17.6 million from football. The Seminoles also had another $15.3 million in contributions to football, and no doubt much of that came from ticket-related contributions (those donations you have to make in order to buy season tickets, get better seats, etc.).

Need tickets to a Florida State game?

“government subsidies for athletics”

There seems to be great concern that state and local governments are subsidizing athletic departments, because the NCAA financial disclosure happens to include a category by this name. Don’t fret. Many times I’ve found the amount reported by an athletic department as support from governmental entities is lottery revenue earmarked for Title IX purposes, meaning it goes to fund scholarships for female student athletes. State and local governments aren’t just cutting checks to athletic departments to fund losses or otherwise bail them out. I looked at a couple of examples in my book, Saturday Millionaires, if you’re interested in learning more about this subject. You can download Chapter 1 for free here.

Any financial numbers I share are from financial disclosures each university files with the NCAA annually. The latest figures are from 2012-2013.

Ask SportsBizMiss

Degree Completion

Multiple Options for Former Student Athletes Who Want to Complete Degree

Degree CompletionA student athlete who fails to complete his or her degree prior to exhausting eligibility is out of luck, right? Fail to graduate in five years or suffer an injury that prevents future competition and you’re on your own, right?

Wrong.

Despite congressmen questioning the ability of student athletes to complete their degrees and recent letters penned by the presidents of the Big Ten and Pac-12 that mention degree-completion goals for student athletes, the issue here isn’t about the lack of programs. At best, the issue is a lack of awareness of all of the existing degree-completion programs.

Click here to keep reading my SportsBusiness Journal piece on degree completion programs.

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