SBD/24/Sponsorships Advertising Marketing

MARTIN'S MILLIONS? CASEY STEPS TO THE MARKETING PLATE

          Casey Martin is "fielding an avalanche of offers that
     are extraordinary for a golfer who has not reached the top
     level" of the PGA Tour, according to Thomas Heath of the
     WASHINGTON POST.  In addition to his Nike apparel deal,
     worth between $50,000-$75,000 a year with additional income
     if he earns his PGA Tour card, Martin has deals pending with
     a national insurance group and a golf equipment 
     manufacturer.  The two new sponsor deals will be announced
     March 3, with a third new deal "imminent."  Martin has also
     received more than 20 requests to appear in corporate-
     sponsored golf outings and PGA Tour tournaments across the
     country.  Martin: "If someone's willing to pay me to
     represent them, I'm not going to turn them down.  I'm a
     little uncomfortable with the fact that it's done ...
     because of my leg."  NBC's "Dateline" will also feature
     Martin shortly (WASHINGTON POST, 2/24).  In GA, Witsil &
     Cline reported that officials at E-Z-GO Textron, the
     nation's largest golf cart maker, have held discussions with
     Signature Sports Group, Martin's agency, about a possible
     golf cart endorsement deal.  An agreement could be "rendered
     moot," however, if the PGA Tour decides Martin should ride
     in a single person scooter (Augusta CHRONICLE, 2/22).
          EXEMPTIONS: Martin writes in GOLF WORLD: "I have no
     intention of pursuing any sponsors' exemptions on the PGA
     Tour, at least not now" (GOLF WORLD, 2/2O).  CNN/SI's Jaime
     Diaz: "Until he knows his game can handle the pressure, it's
     probably not worth the risk" ("Pro Golf Weekly," CNN, 2/21).
          MORE CASEY: Jack Nicklaus, on the Martin ruling: "I'm
     really worried about the long-term effects on the game of
     golf. ... When you really get down to playing serious
     tournament golf it's a whole different ballgame, and I know
     the average person just doesn't understand it" ("Up Close,"
     ESPN, 2/20).  AD AGE's Rance Crain credits the PGA Tour for
     "ignoring the obvious bonanza for itself and its corporate
     sponsors that will come its way now that" Martin is allowed
     to use a cart.  The Tour, in "protecting the integrity of
     the game, is determined to keep the likable" Martin out of
     events "even though his presence will draw huge support for
     golf."  Crain: "Instead of deriding the PGA Tour for trying
     to de-ride Mr. Martin, let's be thankful that there is one
     group willing to spurn all the good feeling -- not to
     mention corporate opportunity -- that will flow to golf
     because of Mr. Martin's brave determination" (AD AGE, 2/23).

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