December 16, 2013 // Notre Dame Football

Could Notre Dame Switch to Under Armour?

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (2 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)
Loading ... Loading ...

A general view of the gloves worn by Notre Dame players at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin  (Ken Sutton/Colorsport/Icon SMI)

A general view of the gloves worn by Notre Dame players at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin (Ken Sutton/Colorsport/Icon SMI)

Notre Dame athletics have been outfitted by adidas exclusively since 2001, but according to some reports on Monday, the University could be looking at making a switch to Under Armour in 2015 after the current deal with adidas expires.

Pual Lukas of Uni-Watch.com, a website at the forefront of all of the goings ons with college and professional uniforms, reported on Monday that they’ve heard Under Armour is currently the leading candidate to get the Notre Dame contract in 2015.

According to Wikipedia, Under Armour currently outfits Auburn, Boston College, Maryland, Northwestern, South Florida, Temple, Texas Tech, Utah, and a few other programs meaning Notre Dame would be the most marquee University on the Under Armour roster.

Adidas has done a pretty good job with the Notre Dame jersey over the last few years.  The special edition jerseys the Irish have worn each year for the annual Shamrock Series games haven’t been of the ridiculous variety that other schools have rolled out each year for the most part and adidas hasn’t done too much to tinker with the classic Notre Dame home and away jerseys. The helmets in 2011 and 2012 may have been met with a little consternation from some of the Notre Dame faithful, but those helmets weren’t designed by adidas.

The Shamrock Series jerseys designed by adidas have also succeeded in creating a “cooler” Notre Dame jersey in the eyes of high school recruits thus accomplishing one of the primary goals of the alternate jerseys.

Adidas has done a pretty good job creating some great non jersey apparel for Notre Dame fans too mixing in some classic, traditional, and simple designs along with some more modern and trendy designs like the ones below.

Those basketball jerseys that Notre Dame wore during the 2013 Big East and NCAA Tournaments were another story on the other hand.

Notre Dame’s current deal with adidas paid the University $60 million over the 10 year length of the contract.  If Notre Dame were to switch providers, one would imagine that Notre Dame would be seeking a deal at least comparable with what Michigan got from adidas in 2007 just two years after Notre Dame inked its sponsorship with adidas.  Michigan reportedly got upwards of $80 million for 10 years running through 2017.

Notre Dame initially began working with adidas in 2001 and then renewed with them in 2005 with their current deal.  Prior to the initial deal with adidas, Notre Dame had a 50 year partnership with Champion for all of their uniform needs.

Sports Business Joursnel had a really interesting article over the summer discussing the economics of the university sponsorships of Nike, adidas, and Under Armour and suggested that the market would only get more competitive with Nike and adidas far and away the top dogs and Under Armour trying to break into the space. Could Notre Dame parlay Under Armour’s current third place status in the market into a favorable deal for the University? With just one year remaining in the current adidas deal we may find out sooner rather than later.

 

Comments to this Article

  • TRirish55 commented on December 17th, 2013 at 2:59 am

    The last 2 years the gear they have been wearing from Adidas is the best it’s ever been but under armours gear is sick!!! Remember back in the day the champion and reebok gear was awesome too

    [Reply]

  • Shazamrock commented on December 17th, 2013 at 10:06 am

    I buy American whenever possible.
    I think Notre Dame should too.

    I think paying a little more for a UAS made product is a worth while long term investment.

    There are other choices out there besides choosing company’s where their products are manurfactured in Asian sweatshops, by children under the age of 17,who labor for pennies on the dollar, and who are often required to work 50 hours or more per week with little or no benefits.

    New Balance, Cisco, Majestic, and A4 are just a few of the fine American companies that manurfacture quality team athletic wear.

    [Reply]

    C-Dog replied on December 17th, 2013 at 12:06 pm

    You’d like the University to review the treatment of workers who make the products.

    [Reply]

    Jeff replied on December 17th, 2013 at 2:15 pm

    Notre Dame has a Code of Conduct with which they vet all suppliers to ensure they met the university’s moral standards. I would guess all three major companies would fit within that.

    Also Shazamrock, both Nike and Underarmour are American companies. Those two plus Adidas (who also employs thousands of American workers) are the only athletic apparel AND footwear brands that could manage the size and scope of what ND wants and needs. None of the ones you mentioned have close to the resources or even product lines (New Balance is just running) to handle ND’s contract. For the record, New Balance manufactures the majority of their products overseas but has a few key ones in the US where it makes financial sense. That’s the fine print on their branding message.

    Benefits of UA: ND is the clear top dog so gets the newest stuff first (like the contract Michigan signed with Adidas).
    Great performance product for football, lacrosse, baseball

    Downside: Ugly-ass alternative uniforms (see Maryland and Northwestern)
    Terrible basketball shoes. No good recruit is going to want to wear UA shoes and we don’t need any more disadvantages there.

    [Reply]

    Shazamrock replied on December 17th, 2013 at 3:08 pm

    “New Balance is an American footwear manufacturer based in the Brighton neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts, United States of America. It was founded in 1906 as the New Balance Arch Support Company.
    Eschewing expensive advertising campaigns, it has, nevertheless, grown to be one of the largest makers of sports footwear in the world.
    New Balance has continued to maintain a manufacturing presence in the United States as well as in the United Kingdom for the European market, in contrast to its competitors in the same market space who do not manufacture in the USA or UK. The result of this is that New Balance shoes tend to be more expensive than those of many other manufacturers. To offset this pricing difference, New Balance claims to differentiate their products with technical features, such as a blend of gel inserts, heel counters, and a greater selection of sizes, particularly for very narrow and/or very wide widths.”

    “Wo si yi ge mae guo ren”

    It means, “I am an American”, in Chinese.

    Never underestimate the resourcefullness of American enterprise, or the American worker.

    It’s what made this country great!

    JDH replied on December 20th, 2013 at 12:44 pm

    I would prefer that they buy American as well, for obvious reasons. And yes ND should be cognizant of the company’s business practices, standing, reputation with employee care etc.

    However, that can also be a very slippery slope and highly subjective. One person’s opinion of a company as “evil” is another person’s opinion of said company as “highly ethical”. So, what is the standard(s) and who supplies the benchmarks?

    Also, and I submit this respectively: I don’t think Jeff was “underestimating the resourcefullness of American enterprise / worker” in any way, shape or form. He was simply stating that a company like New Balance would be a bad fit for a bohemoth like ND. New Balance’s MAIN focus (the running industry), lines of business etc. do not remotely address ND’s needs. NB does have a few contracts with pro athletes and small sports teams abroad. But primarily they make running and fitness shoes. Because they are based in the U.S. is meaningless and immaterial.

    Case in Point: Crable Sportswear is a great, profitable little company in Cincinnati, Ohio. It was founded in the 80s by none other than ND all-time great Bob Crable. They are American and without question share the same values as ND. Should ND commit to them because of this? Of course not.

    Square peg in a round hole and all that.

    waltnd62 replied on December 18th, 2013 at 12:19 pm

    in our society these working conditions are deplorable,yet,in their world these jobs might be the only ones available…too many factors involved for the USA to stick our nose in their business…..you must be a strong union advocate…

    [Reply]

  • tom whalen commented on December 17th, 2013 at 10:08 am

    has the notre dame brass not seen the maryland ” flag” or the northwestern “blood” unis?

    PLEASE go with nike, ND. or at the very least, stick with adidas.

    [Reply]

  • C-Dog commented on December 17th, 2013 at 12:07 pm

    Blue and Gold, and White. The rest might be fun, but it can be a side show.

    [Reply]

    Storespook replied on December 18th, 2013 at 7:56 am

    Absolutely agree

    [Reply]

  • duranko commented on December 17th, 2013 at 2:17 pm

    Nike is, along with ESPN, the most DESTRUCTIVE force in modern sports.

    Phil Knight is the Prince of Darkness.

    It was Nike first, then Adidas following who started this knock off of the Hitler Youth Groups by corralling wide eyed hoopers to go to their “camps”
    to get the Goebbelsesque brainwashing that footwear is everything.

    The light bulb went on for me when knucklehead Casey Sanders, then a noted basketball recruit in Florida, after having accepted the Nike brainwashing
    and announce, while being recruited, that “I will only attend a Nike school,” and then matriculated at Nike’s Duke (it is NOT Vice Versa). Casey uttered not a word about academics, campus life, institutional fit or a major.

    Knight’s minions also embrace scum and try to put snow on their moral dunghill. Case in point, Southside scum Landon “Sonny” Cox and the King Jaguars in Chicago.

    The hoop camps undercut the role and importance of the family, the high school institution, and the high school coach. All in the name of some
    “prospect qualification” for futre deals for Nike. That so then can sell (or have stolen) $300 shoes.

    Nike learned from their basketball skullduggery and transferred it to
    football, to with such events as “The opening.”

    GRound zero of course, was the day college sports knuckled under and allowed the company logo on sports uniforms.
    There are enough sharp folks on this board who will correct this if it’s wrong (probably is) but the first team I recall(this is anecdotal, not scientific) wearing the swoosh was the Penn State football team (Joe “Look the other way” Paterno.

    Nike is fiscally sound, and morally and ethically bankrupt.

    I haven’t bought a Nike product since the early 90′s and have politely, with explanation, returned gifts of Nike products.

    [Reply]

    Storespook replied on December 18th, 2013 at 7:55 am

    Hate their shoes and more so, hate their GOLF equipment!

    [Reply]

  • duranko commented on December 17th, 2013 at 7:00 pm

    Jack, nice factual analysis. On the hoop issue, having Mediocre Mike Brey
    with his low-having expectations and too well practiced and glibly delivered excuses as to why Notre Dame got knocked out early in the NCAA tournament, is disadvantage enough. Were Winged Mercury to give up his golden, fleet shoes to the Irish hoopers, I am convinced that Mediocre Mike would yet find a way to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

    [Reply]

    JC replied on December 19th, 2013 at 9:53 am

    The same can be said for Brian Kelly and his 3 mediocre 8 win football seasons…but, of course it is without out question George Bush’s fault!

    As by your definition, “Mediocre Mike” -also applies to: ‘Mediocre Brian’ who will never win a National Championship at ND either!

    No double standards here…eh Arch Bishop duranko!

    [Reply]

    Ron Burgundy replied on December 19th, 2013 at 10:16 am

    That’s a bummer that he’ll never win one.

    [Reply]

    fxm replied on December 19th, 2013 at 10:30 am

    Mediocre Brian played for a National Championship, I don’t recall Mediocre Mike playing for a Big East Championship. BK may never win one, but I feel confident he will play for another. I have to confess, ND basketball doesn’t mean much to me for as bad as football is, basketball is a really grotesque game. This stupidity of John Calipari signing 5 one and dones each year with not even a hint of a degree as a back-up plan. Yuck.

    [Reply]

    JC replied on December 19th, 2013 at 4:55 pm

    Played? What? Zombie Championship Football? Muffet McGraw should get both these jokers unearned paychecks!

    “The thrill is over baby!” Put up or shut-up! More of the same jabberhockey…yet, gee, another ZERO title year sealed excuses! Yeah, we will surely win it all NEXT YEAR on hot air analysis again! Just like our 6-6 Rutgers ‘jock-strap’ bowl will reach new aspirations. Stay tuned!

    C-Dog replied on December 19th, 2013 at 6:30 pm

    Muffet rocks. Even Digger only got close once. Neither Men’s nor Women’s Hoops gets much budget. Both Digger and Mike Brey are charged with running very clean programs that generate just enough interest to get folks in the seats. They pretty much do that.
    The amazing thing about Muffet is that for the longest time, no one but her and staff cared if the women were good or bad. She’s pretty much built that program with her own sweat and leadership. She’s also improved as a coach, staff leader, and recruiter along the way. Her teams over achieve frequently.

    JC replied on December 19th, 2013 at 7:33 pm

    C-Dog,

    You may be aware of this already:

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/emilycanal/2013/12/18/best-of-forbes-netflixs-new-deal-college-footballs-most-valuable-teams/

    Follow the money as you know, ND ‘WAS’ the marketing “KING” Guru of college football until 2009! Texas has passed ND with blazing brand speed!

    Bottom line: Texas in 2013 – 139 million in football revenues and 82 million in profit! ND now a distant 2nd in 2013 -117 million in revenues and 46 million in profit! The downward trend continues with great velocity!

    So if you like your mediocre ND football, fans can keep their mediocre ND football!
    Atleast until the revenues run out!

    “Marketing money talks and the rest walk!”

    Shazamrock replied on December 19th, 2013 at 10:36 am

    Bush 1, or Bush 2?

    [Reply]

    duranko replied on December 19th, 2013 at 2:35 pm

    Reggie Bush or Michael Bush?

    Daryl Bush (stud FSU linebacker Irish went after)
    or Devin Bush?

    For my own part I prefer a bird in the hand to two to four bushes in the bush, but others may differ.

    Shazamrock replied on December 19th, 2013 at 3:22 pm

    Bush’s??? What about Anheuser?

    You know…

    Here comes the King, here comes the big Number One!

    BUDWEISER BEER!
    the king is second to none…

    When you say Bud there’s nothing left you can say
    When you say Bud, the King is right on his way (when you say Bud).
    The King is coming,
    Let’s hear the call,
    When you say Bud you’ve said it all…

    Ya da da da da da da da da da da

  • Storespook commented on December 18th, 2013 at 7:50 am

    I guess ND should get the best deal they can within their guidelines of criteria selection. Personally I can’t stand the multitude of uniform variation and/or color schemes that don’t match the school’s colors (such as the frequent use of grey or black which are not in the said school’s traditional colors). I understand this trend in terms of generating more money and so called enticing the “new generation” of young folks who like variation. Certainly there is some truth to that. Here is some other truth (albeit they are not my favorites as schools of great higher institutional learning) both Alabama and Auburn have had their traditional football uni’s since at least the early 70′s and have not if I recall, used a multi variation or off colored uniform and they each now will be playing or played in the last 5 NC games. I guess the standard crimson & cream and orange, blue, & white traditional uniform has done ok for them. I can understand where teams periodically change a variation of their uniform but if ND ever goes the Oregon look where it seems it’s a different uni for each game, that would be a crappy way to go. Uniforms are part of identity. I like consistency. I am sure there are those that disagree but overall, I like how ND stays pretty consistent besides the Shamrock series or the special occasion green jersey used once in a while.

    [Reply]

    JG replied on December 19th, 2013 at 3:24 pm

    I agree with your points. So many schools quote the recruiting advantage they get from having multiple alternate jerseys but at some point doesn’t the school lose its identity? If most schools have 12 alternate jerseys then having one distinct jersey begins to stand out more.

    I don’t care who supplies the jerseys as long as they have gold helmets, solid blue jerseys, and solid gold pants.

    [Reply]

  • IrishAdidas commented on December 18th, 2013 at 5:35 pm

    They need to stick with Adidas or at least give them last matching rights on a deal. At least of the big 3 mentioned Adidas is the only one that actually manufactures their own uniforms, the other two farm them out to others and stick their labels on them. If you don’t believe me check it out. I have been 100% Adidas for years and then being able to by ND apparel was a double bonus, I absolutely will not wear or purchase anything Nike, just ask my kids! I also purchase uniforms for different sports an the actual quality comparison isn’t even close when you actually have them in hand side-by-side!

    [Reply]

  • Belding commented on December 18th, 2013 at 11:28 pm

    Either switch to Nike or stay with Adidas. Under Armor is an awful choice.

    [Reply]

  • Jimmy commented on December 19th, 2013 at 12:33 am

    Please go to NIKE

    [Reply]

  • Swoops commented on December 19th, 2013 at 3:13 am

    Please ND do not switch! The unis are on point & the shamrock series unis are even more sick. Adidas has a better quality product. Not to mention the mess UA put out when Maryland signed on! UA products just seem tacky to me but that’s justmy opinion.

    [Reply]

    Kim replied on January 16th, 2014 at 7:34 pm

    yeah, stick with adidas!!

    [Reply]

  • bj commented on December 19th, 2013 at 9:57 am

    Michael Haywood, Offensive Coordinator & Runningbacks Coach, Notre Dame: Haywood has been an assistant coach for 17 years and is in his first season at Notre Dame … For the past couple of years, Haywood pays and hosts a Thanksgiving dinner for a different underprivileged family each year that he is personally acquainted with … He also picks a local family to pay for all Christmas expenses for gifts for the entire family, particularly fulfilling the wishes and needs of the family’s children … Haywood is a long-time volunteer for Big Brothers & Big Sisters of America, acting as a positive male role model to underprivileged or orphaned African-American males … In addition to earning a reputation as one of college football’s brightest young coaches, Haywood also makes an impact on the student-athletes as a mentor, motivator and role model … In his two years at Texas, the Longhorn running attack averaged 232.5 yards per game and the offense ranked in the Top 20 in the nation … Haywood has tutored many prominent runningbacks during his career such as Darius Walker (Notre Dame), Cedric Benson (Texas) and Kevin Faulk (LSU), to name a few.

    [Reply]

    Shazamrock replied on December 19th, 2013 at 10:15 am

    Great,

    But what, exactly, does Michael Hayward have to do with Under Armour?

    [Reply]

    duranko replied on December 19th, 2013 at 1:56 pm

    Shaz, perhaps Haywood donned Under Armour gear when he was nailed for wife-beating.

    There is a reason that Haywood had an O’learyesque tenure as Pitt’s head football coach.

    Quit confusing by with the facts or correct posting protocol, it is a bridge too far for him.

    [Reply]

  • bj commented on December 19th, 2013 at 10:08 am

    whereis this guy? now

    [Reply]

    Ron Burgundy replied on December 19th, 2013 at 10:14 am

    Jail

    [Reply]

Add A Comment

Follow UHND.com




Part of the USA Today Sports Media Group. UHND.com is a Notre Dame Football website that is not affiliated with, sponsored by, or endorsed by the University of Notre Dame © UHND.com 1997-2009