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I’ve mostly stayed out of the Adidas incidents up to this point because I haven’t had the time to dissect it all properly. I don’t want to say something to drastic and end up with egg on my face- the one thing I feel is true and the real issue behind all of it isn’t corruption or exploitation. It’s what happens whenever you set up a monopoly- money gives the monopoly all the leverage and it’s the people that suffer.

While an Adidas executive did get charged with bribery and fraud, there were nine other people involved. Four of them were coaches. There seems to be a systemic issue in the NCAA that is out for itself- these bribes are on the tail of big money generating more than $1 billion in revenue (source:. http://www.businessinsider.com/ncaa-tournament-makes-a-lot-of-money-2017-3). Getting the right sponsorship deals is crucial for advertising during their big events, and with so much to save through sponsoring students (who want to be sponsored) the whole system benefits.

If there were alternative outlets for sports recruiting, there would be an alternative to a system that people know are filled with problems- and it would also make the NCAA get its act together. The competition also would watch each other like a hawk and would also let athletes earn more of the money for potentially signing up with the right sports recruiting league.

 

It’s not just Adidas.

 

I mean, it’s not just Adidas. The Duke Blue Devil’s have been swayed by Nike. The school seemingly has been coming to Nike looking to make sure that they have major influence at the school. I would be willing to bet most schools are under a major athletic company’s thumb- they are probably even looking to be under a thumb because the money involved is so powerful. It’s why USA sports teams don’t wear out iconic red white and blue- Nike influences enough to remove it.

The more you look into it, the more Nike and Adidas have their fingers in the NCAA- how much of it is sponsorship and how much of it is bribery is hard to say without more data, but when I see sports teams like The Duke Blue Devil’s influenced, I believe it’s safe to assume it’s not fair play.

The day after I write this article, Sports Illustrated has an amazing article saying the same thing I am, but they went into much greater detail the amount that Nike, UA, and Adidas are in league with college teams:

American

Cincinnati: Under Armour
Connecticut: Nike
East Carolina: Adidas
Houston: Nike
Memphis: Nike
SMU: Nike
South Florida: Under Armour
Temple: Under Armour
Tulane: Nike
Tulsa: Adidas
UCF: Nike
Wichita State: Under Armour

ACC

Boston College: Under Armour
Clemson: Nike
Duke: Nike
Florida State: Nike
Georgia Tech: Russell Athletic*
Louisville: Adidas
Miami: Adidas
NC State: Adidas
North Carolina: Nike
Notre Dame: Under Armour
Pittsburgh: Nike
Syracuse: Nike
Virginia: Nike
Virginia Tech: Nike
Wake Forest: Nike

*Georgia Tech will switch to Adidas in 2018

Big 12

Baylor: Nike
Iowa State: Nike
Kansas: Adidas
Kansas State: Nike
Oklahoma: Nike
Oklahoma State: Nike
TCU: Nike
Texas: Nike
Texas Tech: Under Armour
West Virginia: Nike

Big East

Butler: Nike
Creighton: Nike
DePaul: Nike
Georgetown: Nike
Marquette: Nike
Providence: Nike
Seton Hall: Under Armour
St. John’s: Under Armour
Xavier: Nike
Villanova: Nike

Big Ten

Illinois: Nike
Indiana: Adidas
Iowa: Nike
Maryland: Under Armour
Michigan: Nike
Michigan State: Nike
Minnesota: Nike
Nebraska: Adidas
Northwestern: Under Armour
Ohio State: Nike
Penn State: Nike
Purdue: Nike
Rutgers: Adidas
Wisconsin: Under Armour

Pac-12

Arizona: Nike
Arizona State: Adidas
California: Under Armour
Colorado: Under Armour
Oregon: Nike
Oregon State: Nike
Stanford: Nike
UCLA: Under Armour
USC: Nike
Utah: Under Armour
Washington: Nike
Washington State: Nike

SEC

Alabama: Nike
Arkansas: Nike
Auburn: Under Armour
Florida: Nike
Georgia: Nike
Kentucky: Nike
LSU: Nike
Mississippi State: Adidas
Missouri: Nike
Ole Miss: Nike
South Carolina: Under Armour
Tennessee: Nike
Texas A&M: Adidas
Vanderbilt: Nike

 

 

On the other hand, it’s not just the NCAA

 

I follow Reeboks as well, and they have become one of the biggest sponsors for the UFC. What does this mean? They get to control what the fighters wear most of the time- even if not by sponsoring the athlete but by sponsoring the arena they fight in. There have been many UFC fighters who feel their grasp on the industry prevents them from getting much bigger much better sponsorships.

 

UFC Japan and the Reebok sponsorships of shame

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