SBD/Issue 232/Sponsorships, Advertising & Marketing

Modell's Sees Demand For Vick Jerseys; Dick's Waiting On Decision

Modell's Says Vick Jerseys In High
Demand, Especially In Philadelphia
Modell's Sporting Goods CEO Mitch Modell said that he "initially had reservations about selling" Eagles QB Michael Vick jerseys, but that it "didn't take long to see there was 'pretty high demand' for No. 7's sports apparel -- especially at his Philadelphia-area stores," according to Wood & Cook of the PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER. Modell said, "We weren't planning on selling it until the customers started coming into the stores demanding it. As long as the customers are coming in, we'll sell it. We're in the business to serve our customers." NFL VP/Communications Brian McCarthy said he anticipates sales of Vick's No. 7 jersey will be "among the top-20-selling player jerseys for the month of August" on Meanwhile, Wood & Cook note is "selling an Eagles jersey for dogs that could be customized with the No. 7 and VICK on the back for $39.99." NFL Senior VP/PR Greg Aiello: "Just as you could with any other player, you can buy a customizable jersey for a dog with anybody's name on it." Aiello: "Just to have Michael Vick's name on the back is not an issue. Vick is working with the Humane Society and speaking out for the proper treatment of animals, so we don't see a problem" (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 8/20).

WAIT AND SEE APPROACH: Dick's Sporting Goods Exec VP & CMO Jeff Hennion, whose company earlier this week decided not to sell Vick jerseys, said that the chain is "tallying customer service calls, search queries on its Web site and inquiries at Philadelphia-area stores to gauge consumer interest in Vick's jersey." Hennion said that Dick's "may decide later to begin stocking the Vick jersey." Dick's has "about 400 stores in 40 states" (BLOOMBERG NEWS, 8/19). A poll asks readers, "Will you buy a Michael Vick jersey?" At presstime, 58.0% of respondents selected "Never!" while 33.1% chose "Absolutely!" (, 8/20).

QUICK RESPONSE: In Minneapolis, Chao Xiong reports the Vikings "scrambled" to have No. 4 Brett Favre jerseys "printed and rushed to their three retail stores, the Vikings Locker Rooms." Meanwhile, Goldy's Locker Room at the Mall of America "expects to have them by Friday or Saturday," and Dave's Sport Shop in Maple Grove, Minnesota "received a shipment of jerseys Wednesday afternoon, and quickly sold about 15" (Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 8/20). In St. Paul, Sean Jensen reports the Vikings Locker Room store at the Mall of America by yesterday morning was "selling Favre jerseys with a line wrapping throughout the store." Reebok Sports License division VP & GM Blake Lundberg said of producing jerseys for Favre's return, "We're almost treating it Super Bowl-like, working 24 hours a day, seven days a week" (ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS, 8/20). The AP reported sporting goods stores in Sioux Falls, South Dakota "report phones ringing off the hook with people seeking" Favre's jersey, and the "situation is the same" in Fargo, North Dakota. Fargo-based Sports City Owner Ron Gordy said that the Favre jersey "might be his best-selling jersey ever," and that the phone "has been ringing steadily" (AP, 8/19). Meanwhile, Reebok is "actually printing and selling Favre's red practice jersey" (, 8/19).

PUTTING PLAN IN ACTION: Indianapolis-based MainGate President & CEO Dave Moroknek, whose company is the "official vendor" for Vikings souvenirs, said that MainGate "has been preparing a merchandise line and a marketing plan for months" in anticipation of Favre joining the team. MainGate has been "stocking a mass quantity of jerseys, tees, hats and other merchandise to carry for all store locations and to cover online sales through" MainGate will launch a "fully integrated sales and marketing program in conjunction with the announcement of Favre joining the Vikings" (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 8/19).

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