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USOC sources say Bill Hybl, who served as interim President of the USOC in '91-'92, has been nominated for a full-term as President. The Olympic Committee is expected to release the list of officer candidates today (Colorado Springs GAZETTE TIMES, 6/14)...By the end of the Games, the state of Georgia will have spent more than $320,000 on bodyguards and drivers for ACOG president Billy Payne and CO Officer A.D. Frazier (ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 6/14).
Though Sports Illustrated spent $40M to be the official publishing sponsor of the Atlanta Games, some "publishers appear to be flouting the rules" that say non-sponsors are forbidden from using Olympic symbols in any advertising or marketing, reports Patrick Reilly of the WALL STREET JOURNAL. For instance, USA Today ran an ad from Olympic sponsor Xerox that featured both a Games logo and the paper's insignia and was told by the USOC to remove the ad. In addition, ACOG says it has issued warnings to "several women's magazines and publications" it won't identify. SI plans to make $3-$5M from its "official program," will air a two-hour TV special prior to the Games, and publish a daily magazine during the Games (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 6/13). NIKE WATCH: ACOG is currently deciding whether Nike's new World Wide Web site, dubbed "OLYMPICSLanta" is more commercial - than informational. Nike is not an official sponsor of the Games and ACOG only allows Web sites from non-Olympic sponsors if they offer editorial content (AD AGE, 6/14).
For the past decade, track and field "has competed with baseball for the title of most-inept sports marketer," according to Roger Thurow of the WALL STREET JOURNAL. But recently the sport has made an attempt at increased exposure and after the U.S. Olympic Trials, which will be broadcast by ESPN and NBC, and the Olympics, track and field will enjoy "its greatest exposure in the U.S. since the Los Angeles Olympics in 1984." The question, Thurow writes, is "can track and field stay hot in America?" Nike spokesperson Tom Feuer: "This is the one thing that worries all of us: Where does track and field in the U.S. go after the Olympics? We probably won't have the Olympics back in the States for another 30 or 40 years." To appeal to a wider audience, USA Track and Field studied the marketing techniques of the NBA, NFL and NHL, this winter bought afternoon time slots on NBC and began shortening competitions to a few hours rather than "all-day affairs." Mostly, however, the sport "is pinning its future on the creation of genuine pop icons -- from these Olympics" like Michael Johnson, Dan O'Brien and Carl Lewis. Ollan Cassell, Exec Dir of USA Track and Field: "Heroes. Our aim is to create heroes out of the athletes and set up head-to- head competition, have two or three athletes that are world class going up against each other" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 6/14).