I am no doubt a few days behind breaking this news to you, and in these the slowest two months of the calendar year, I am sure you've already digested the information and implications of Michigan's big move of the summer...from Nike to Adidas. This will no doubt kill your plans to cave and get a jersey for the coming year, but you've already got a "7", "20", and "86" "1", right? I can't imagine there will be more of a change to anyone's closet than my own. I just hope that Adidas is as on the ball with their big and tall sizes as is the swoosh.
The deal, reportedly will net Michigan $3.8 million in cold hard cash per year, more than 3 times the paltry $1.2 million from Duck-lover Phil Knight. In addition, Adidas will outfit all 25 of Michigan's athletic teams. Like me, you're probably uttering an audible "wow" right at your computer screen...not at the lucrative deal engineered by evil genius Bill Martin, but at the fact that Michigan has 25 athletic teams. Does this include Broomball?
I must admit, I've been a Nike super-mark for years...loved the swoosh, loved the shoes. I loved all 12 of my jerseys, from my pre-Nike Wheatley #6 (with full name on the back....I was young) to my now legendary Biakabutuka #21 (first to don the mark of Nike, which has in recent years fallen off allowing me to claim it's a Desmond) to my stretch fit, panel-sided, size 60 Henne #7. But I'm willing to retire them all and move on. It's as if when the deal was announced, a flip switched inside my head, making Nike evil. The Buckeyes wear Nike, so it must be bad. The Oregon Ducks and their damn crowned field are brought to you by Nike. No doubt by the dawning of the 2008 season a swooshed Michigan jersey will be as embarrassing as having one with the word Michigan on the front, or your own last name on the back, or a yellow (reversible) one from Steve and Barry's.
Official Adidas Michigan gear, which will no doubt include a newly designed away jersey (sans piping), will be available next summer. For now, you can get this reminder of the Rose Bowl Michigan slept through and I left my mark on in the CBS Store.
Obligatory links of clothing change...
- A Reminder to Join the Hip-Hop culture (of the 80's) and get some Adidas: Just For Kicks (YouTube)
- The Angel's Article...just the facts ma'am: Michigan Athletics Signs With Adidas (Detroit News)
- Get on board...even if you like child labor: Boycott Nike Home Page
- Phil Knight reminds me of (and looks like) Donald Sutherland's character in Animal House: Notable Oregonians