SBD/15/Sponsorships Advertising Marketing


     Last night, ESPN's Mike Tirico reported that three San Diego
TV station employees have filed a trademark application for
commercial rights to the name "Air McNair" ("SportsCenter," ESPN,
6/14).  If approved, Steve McNair, the Oilers' No. 1 pick, would
lose the "exclusive control over the commercialization of his
nickname, and potentially, millions of dollars."  The U.S.
Department of Patents and Trademarks is expected to rule on the
application within six months (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 6/14).  USA
TODAY's Michael Hiestand gives a "thumbs down" to the three.
Hiestand: "Whether or not pro athletes are overpaid, they still
deserve rights to their own nicknames" (USA TODAY, 6/15).
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