(Editor’s note: this story originally ran on The Sports Bank at 7 am CST on December 19th.)
Armed Forces Radio Network has informed The Sports Bank that Notre Dame football will have Under Armour as their official uniform partner once their current contract expires at the end of 2014. A source within the ND Athletic Department also told AFRN that Nike is making a very strong push, but it’s all but confirmed that Notre Dame football will drop Adidas at the end of next season. Notre Dame football will then add UA as their new long term athletic performance partner.
There has been speculation and rumors surrounding this deal for some time.
Word is that ND wants to be the biggest brand name program in the portfolio of their athletic apparel provider. Michigan was given priority status over Notre Dame by Adidas and it’s likely the Wolverines will re-up with them. This is one part of what led to the deteriorating relationship between Notre Dame and Adidas. With the new additions being made to the Notre Dame football stadium (we have some breaking news on that topic here. New videoo boards, artificial turf, and more!), ND has decided to make some renovations in numerous facets of their college football program. This has also added to Adidas and Notre Dame going different directions. “Creative differences” if you will.
Nike has a major deal with the NFL, among their many partnerships, so a contract with Notre Dame football isn’t as big a deal to them as it is to Under Armour. The Swoosh would like to sign on with the Fighting Irish, obviously. But it wouldn’t be a game-changer. For Under Armour, signing with Notre Dame football would be a brand re-definer.
Paul M. Banks is the owner of The Sports Bank.net, an affiliate of Fox Sports. He’s also an analyst for multiple news talk radio stations across the country; with regular weekly segments on NBC and Fox Sports Radio. Follow him on Twitter (@paulmbanks) and RSS Catch him Tuesdays talking Illini and Northwestern for KOZN 1620 The Zone, Fridays talking Chicago Bears for WAOR 95.7 The Fan