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Is the Under Armour Argument Valid?

By on March 13th, 2013 in Basketball, Football 8 Comments »
under armour

Much has been made about the contract Auburn has with Under Armour and the impact it has on the basketball program. Many argue that because Nike essentially controls AAU basketball and prevents coaches not wearing their brand from attending its sponsored basketball camps, schools like Auburn have a huge disadvantage.

It’s a logical argument. It also begs the question why the Auburn Athletic Department would enter into an agreement with an apparel company that would threaten the success of its second biggest revenue sport.

There’s nothing wrong with Under Armour from a consumer standpoint outside the prices. They have a great reputation with football and have really streamlined the look of the Auburn uniform.

But when Nike controls the high school and college basketball universe, why would you built a $100 million arena and then make it near impossible for your team to compete?

Don’t misunderstand; Auburn’s failures on the court this season are not Under Armour’s fault. Even if Auburn could recruit top talent, Tony Barbee would run them off. But moving forward, Auburn’s relationship with the Maryland based company could be a real hindrance in not only landing great talent, but also finding a good coach…

Is tonight Tony Barbee’s last one as Auburn coach? While athletic director Jay Jacobs has been mum on the issue, those close to him believe Barbee will be given a fourth year.

Auburn (9-22, 3-15) takes on 11th-seeded Texas A&M at 9 p.m. in the first round of the SEC Tournament in Nashville. The Tigers have lost 15 of its last 16 contests, but nine of those losses have by been by 10 points or less. Despite the long odds, Auburn players believe they have a chance.

“It’s been worse than what the numbers indicate for us,” Frankie Sullivan said. “Nobody wants to be in last place, but it is what it is, it’s the cards we’ve been dealt with, now we’ve got to go into the SEC Tournament and play our hearts out.”…

Yesterday was a tough one for a couple of former Auburn players. Will Herring parted ways with the New Orleans Saints after refusing to take a pay cut for the 2013 season. Releasing Herring saved the Saints $1.5 million in salary cap money.

In something of a surprise, Karlos Dansby was released by the Miami Dolphins yesterday, just three years after signing a five-year, $42.5 million contract. He was due a $6.2 million pay day this year…

In case you were wondering, Auburn kicks off the football season 170 days from now. Students are on break this week. Spring practice starts in two weeks. Maybe it’s the first appearance of warm weather, but I’m pretty excited about this year’s football team.

No one expects Auburn to compete for a title this season, but it will lay the foundation for all of Gus Malzahn’s teams to follow. Like 1981 and 1999, there’s always excitement in watching the ground floor go up.

8 Comments

  1. Third Generation Tiger Third Generation Tiger says:

    I don’t even notice what gear most teams are wearing while playing. Do you know of any successful basketball programs that are sponsored by Under Armour?

    I know AAU basketball is huge, but I thought the NCAA was seriously dissatisfied with their practices as related to relationships with college coaches.

  2. Pine Mt Tiger Pine Mt Tiger says:

    Interesting. I didn’t know about AAU Basketball not letting coaches that are not with Nike attend their basketball camps. I don’t know how much it hurts those schools but it can’t help.

  3. auhousefly says:

    Blaming Under Armour is not valid. The Auburn basketball staff should accept full responsibility.

    • Pine Mt Tiger Pine Mt Tiger says:

      I don’t think Jay says anything about blaming Under Armour. Only that AU could be at a disadvantage:

      “Don’t misunderstand; Auburn’s failures on the court this season are not Under Armour’s fault ….. Auburn’s relationship with the Maryland based company could be a real hindrance in not only landing great talent, but also finding a good coach…”

  4. auhousefly says:

    I was just answering the question in the title of the article, but let me rephrase, I don’t think think the Under Armour argument is valid.

  5. KungFuPanda9 KungFuPanda9 says:

    “Many argue that because Nike essentially controls AAU basketball and prevents coaches not wearing their brand from attending its sponsored basketball camps, schools like Auburn have a huge disadvantage.”

    I’m surprised no one blames Nike for basically blackballing schools for not wearing their gear. This constitutes a monopoly. Seems unfair and even illegal.

  6. Mike jimithing78 says:

    What percentage of basketball camps are Nike sponsored AAU/USSC camps?

    While I don’t believe that has anything to do with Auburn’s historic basketball woes, of the current top 25, seven are Adidas teams, the rest are Nike.