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BC LOOKING FOR ANOTHER HAIL MARY: TOUTS JESUITS AND JOCKS
Published September 24, 1998
To counter "bad publicity" it has experienced in recent years, the Boston College (BC) athletic department has hired a PR firm for the first time "to stake its claim by touting its rich athletic and religious traditions," according to Gregg Krupa of the BOSTON GLOBE. In August, BC "launched an extensive advertising strike" covering TV, radio, newspapers and the local transportation authority. Susan Mosher, BC's Assistant AD for Internal Affairs, put the campaign in "the low six figures." The campaign, designed by Hill Holliday Connors Cosmopulos, features men's football, basketball and hockey and women's basketball, "but is intended to improve the image of the whole athletics department." In one TV spot, which features Doug Flutie's famous '84 last-second touchdown pass against the Univ. of Miami, a voice-over says, "We don't just recite the Hail Mary. We demonstrate it." BC officials "hope to buff the BC brand" by "playing off the school's Jesuit grounding against the dynamic visual backdrop of successful athletic endeavor." Mosher: "Selling tickets is important, but we see this as an image campaign." Previous marketing efforts by BC had "consisted largely of direct-mail solicitations to alumni" (BOSTON GLOBE, 9/23). GOING BOWLING: In Ft. Worth, Wendell Barnhouse reports that the Cotton Bowl "is expected to announce a deal" with the SEC today which would put an SEC team against a host Big 12 team beginning this season (STAR-TELEGRAM, 9/24).