adidas originals superstars Lions will have new look under Adidas brand
FLORENCE North Alabama teams in every sport will have a new look during the 2017 18 season due to a new agreement with sportswear manufacturing giant Adidas.
Adidas will become UNA’s official brand for athletic footwear, apparel and accessories. The five year contract will begin July 1. The Lions have worn Russell apparel for the past five years.
“Our Russell agreement comes to an end this summer and we had representatives from Nike and Adidas approach us,” Linder said. “We thought it was in our best interest to look at some the vendors which would be available and would be able to outfit our athletic department from head to toe. Russell was good with the cloth, but we didn’t have a contract for shoes or hats.
“We put a request for proposals out to different sporting goods agencies and apparel companies. When it came back, Adidas really made a strong push to secure us. It was really flattering and their product is really good, too. Adidas is trending up with our young people and is kind of the hot brand right now. It just all came together.”
With the new contract, all 14 of UNA’s athletic teams will have new home and road uniforms next season.
In the first year of the agreement with Adidas, UNA will be able to purchase uniforms on a buy one, get one free program for football, men’s and women’s basketball and softball. UNA also receives a $10,000 transitional signing bonus at retail value in Adidas promotional product allotment.
“Having the buy one, get one is a huge deal for football and it will allow us to get into Adidas right away,” Linder said. “It means we will only have to buy one set of football uniforms, which will run from $15,000 to $20,000.”
Linder said as part of the agreement Adidas will give UNA $40,000 in product per year, based on catalog prices. The previous deal with Russell started with $25,000 in product per year and increased each year to $60,000 this past year.
Whatever additional product UNA purchases from Adidas will be at approximately 40 percent off retail price. Under the expiring deal with Russell, UNA received 50 percent off retail price.
While the uniforms will not change drastically, Linder said fans might notice subtle differences.
“Adidas has different cloth and it will look different,” he said. “Their purple is a little more rich that what we’ve had in the past, so you might notice a slight difference in the tint of the purple. It’s a little more vibrant and it stands out really well.”
UNA hopes to have an unveiling of the new football uniforms during the summer. Linder said wearing such a popular brand such as Adidas will enhance UNA’s image and he expects it to be very popular with the players and coaches.
“Having a world wide brand is huge, especially since it is a popular brand with our student population,” Linder said. “Having one brand from head to toe is very beneficial and the co branding opportunities are huge because you are partnered with a worldwide recognized brand.