Vanderbilt to set sail with alternate uniforms sometime in 2015

We know how they look.

When we’ll actually see Vanderbilt’s new alternate football uniform, however, is unclear.

The Nike-designed ‘deep water’ wear was revealed Sunday at Dore Jam, the annual interactive, preseason fan festival. It features matching gray jerseys and pants with light gold numbers outlined in black. The pants feature the ‘Anchor Down’ slogan on the outside of each leg.

The helmet is the black version of the redesigned one (also in white) that was premiered earlier this month. The plan is to wear the ‘deep water’ uniform once this season. Which game was not revealed.

The rest of the time, the Commodores will stick with some combination of the white, black and gold jerseys and pants.

There are some obvious options for when players and coaches might want to break out the new look.

Sept. 3 vs. Western Kentucky: It is the first game of the season and nothing provides a fresh perspective like a new look. Plus, it’s a primetime game on a Thursday night so a lot of people will be watching.

Sept. 12 vs. Georgia: Speaking of a large audience … this one is the SEC opener and a Saturday afternoon national telecast on CBS. If there is any competitive advantage to new, exciting uniforms this would be a time to exploit it.

Nov. 21 vs. Texas A&M: It’s the final home game of the season and the lead-in to Thanksgiving week. If the primary idea is to enhance merchandise sales with an expanded product line, what better time to showcase the look than days prior to the busiest shopping day of the year?

Vanderbilt entered an apparel deal with Nike prior to the 2014-15 academic year. Earlier this summer the two signed a long-term deal that made Nike the apparel provider for all of the school’s 15 athletics teams through 2023.

Check out more glimpses of the new look here.

(Photo: Vanderbilt/Nike)

Aug 17, 2015 5:20 AM

Mariota adds another endorsement deal while NFL contract awaits

Whenever Marcus Mariota finally decides to sign a contract with the Tennessee Titans he’ll be prepared.

The second overall pick in the 2015 NFL draft has gotten plenty of practice in signing on the dotted line in recent weeks thanks to a growing list of endorsement deals.

The latest, according to Pacific Business News, came last week with Island Insurance Co., Ltd., a company based in Hawaii, Mariota’s home state. He also reportedly has deals to endorse First Hawaiian Bank, Beats by Dre headphones, Nike and Subway.

From Pacific Business News:

Island Insurance is Hawaii’s largest locally owned property and casualty insurance carrier, and recently ranked as one of the nation’s top P&C insurers for the eight consecutive year by the Ward Group.

“Marcus’ athletic talents are without question, but it is the quality of his character that makes him such a special individual,” said John Schapperle, president and chief executive officer of Island Insurance, in a statement. “His integrity, humility and pride in his island roots are values we hold deeply and have been cornerstones of our company culture for 75 years.”

Terms of the latest deal were not disclosed but it was reported that Mariota would appear in Island Insurance advertising and on its website.

Mariota is the only first round pick in this year’s draft who has yet to sign a contract. The Titans open training camp in a little more than a week.

Jul 20, 2015 5:20 AM

Vanderbilt signs long-term apparel deal with Nike

Apparently the get-acquainted period is over for Vanderbilt athletics and Nike.

Now they’re in a long-term relationship.

Nike will be the exclusive apparel provider for all 15 of the school’s athletics teams through 2023, the school announced Tuesday. The initial deal between the two was struck a year ago.

“We are very excited to expand our agreement with Nike,” athletics director David Williams said in a release from the university. “This partnership with a fellow world class brand will benefit our student-athletes greatly in their competitions. Our teams play at a championship level and Nike offers a championship product, it’s a great fit.”

During the 2014-15 school year, Vanderbilt’s women’s tennis team won the national championship, the baseball team finished as national runner-up and the men’s golf team finished fifth in the country – all while outfitted with Nike gear.

Nine of the school’s athletics teams qualified for the postseason, albeit the most high profile – football, men’s and women’s basketball – were not among them.

This is a partnership that has a positive impact on all of our teams,” senior associate AD for External Affairs Steve Walsh said. “We look forward to continuing to work with Nike to build the Vanderbilt Commodores brand regionally, nationally and internationally.”

Jul 7, 2015 1:36 PM

Despite protests, UT proceeds with plan to rebrand women's teams

It was William Shakespeare who wrote: “What's in a name? that which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet.”

Shakespeare clearly was not a fan of the University of Tennessee’s softball team. Or its volleyball team. Or any of the other women’s programs about to be called something different.

Those teams have a lot of supporters who think the pending change stinks.

On Wednesday all University of Tennessee women’s sports teams, with the exception of the women’s basketball team, will be known as the Volunteers. Only the women’s basketball team will continue as the Lady Vols and use the familiar logo, a tribute to former coach Pat Summit to reflect her legacy and continue its association with the program she built over her 38 years of coaching.

The name change was prompted by the school’s decision to switch apparel providers from Adidas to Nike. Nike conducted a branding audit for the University and recommended the school consolidate its logos and wording to create a better branding consistency.

The Power-T now will serve as the primary symbol for the school and its athletic program. Nike believed the use of Lady Vols divides the university and inhibits the goal of being united as “One Tennessee.” Nike also has faced some heat for the name change controversy prompting their consumer affairs department to respond stating, “Nike has no decision making capabilities whatsoever regarding the University’s choice to phase out the Lady Volunteers nickname for all women’s sports.”

Several dozen Lady Vols supporters protested the name change at the annual Board of trustees meeting on campus and circulated a petition to save the nickname, which gathered over 25,000 signatures. Fans and former players are not the only ones joining the fight to save the Lady Vols. Forty-five state lawmakers, including Tennessee Rep. Roger Kane, R-Knoxville, wrote a letter to the school’s board of trustees urging them to reconsider the name change. A website was started by former UT volleyball player Leslie Cikara called The site posts letters from both former and current athletes urging the University to keep the Lady Volunteer name.

The university, though, has turned a deaf ear to all complaints and its athletics website is promoting the official launch of the rebranded athletics department, 11 a.m. (CDT) Wednesday.

Jun 30, 2015 12:11 PM

Industry mag names Tennessee 'State of the Year'

Evaluating the number of jobs created and the amount of capital invested in a 13-month span, Business Facilities magazine gave the top recognition to Tennessee this year. Here's a breakdown of the projects they based their decision on, from the Haslam administration:

The top economic development projects for number of jobs created and amount of capital invested from Oct. 1, 2012, – Oct. 31, 2013, include the following.

Top Five Projects for Jobs

· Hankook Tire Co., Ltd (Montgomery County): 1,800 jobs

· ARAMARK (Davidson County): 1,500 jobs

· Nissan North America, Inc. (Rutherford County): 1,400 jobs

· Calsonic Kansei North America, Inc. (Bedford, Marshall and Rutherford counties): 1,200 jobs

· UBS (Davidson County): 1,000 jobs

Top Five Projects for Capital Investment

· Eastman Chemical Company (Sullivan County): $1.6 billion

· Hankook Tire Co., Ltd (Montgomery County): $800 million

· International Paper Company (Shelby County): $321 million

· Nike, Inc. (Shelby County): $276 million

· Alcoa, Inc. (Blount County): $275 million

Jan 14, 2014 11:05 AM

Building a winner

With Nike as a partner and a sector waiting to be rolled up, Genesco gets serious about team sports
Sep 14, 2011 7:22 AM
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State roundup: Nike looks to grow big in Memphis

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Nissan sues former employees for relocation outlays

Automaker goes after former employees who reaped relocation benefits before moving on to greener pastures
Oct 22, 2007 12:16 PM