SBD/June 12, 2014/Marketing and Sponsorship

Dockers Unveils PSA-Style Ad Poking Fun At Jim Harbaugh's "Dad Pants"

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Sarah Harbaugh, the wife of 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh, in a "funny new ad from Dockers" issues a PSA-style message against "dad pants," according to Eric Edholm of YAHOO SPORTS. Sarah Harbaugh claims the condition "affects countless men in our country." In the past, she has "spoken out against her husband Jim's sartorial choices." His "pleated Walmart khakis and daily-reprise outfit of hat and black 49ers sweatshirt have gotten plenty of attention." So it is "only natural that Dockers and its flat-front line of pants would step up and make a campaign out of this." Sarah Harbaugh said that she "has lived the tragedy firsthand and has aimed to put a stop to it" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 6/11). Dockers is a brand from Levi Strauss & Co., which has the naming rights to the 49ers' new stadium. CSNBAYAREA.com's Matt Maiocco reported the 49ers "in lieu of a contract extension last year" allowed Jim Harbaugh, who appears in the ad, to "enter into endorsement deals with team sponsors" (CSNBAYAREA.com, 6/11).

INSTANT REACTION: In S.F., Ann Killion wrote Sarah Harbaugh "goes a long way toward making her nutty husband look a little more human" (SFGATE.com, 6/11). USATODAY.com's Chris Strauss wrote the couple "both prove to be extremely good sports" (USATODAY.com, 6/11). ESPN.com's Bill Williamson wrote Sarah Harbaugh "deserves a Clio Award for her role and although Jim Harbaugh doesn’t have any lines, he too scores a touchdown in the bit" (ESPN.com, 6/11). NFL.com's Dan Hanzus wrote Dockers "wisely assigned Jim a non-speaking role in the commercial," which makes a "lot of sense given what Harbaugh has put on tape" (NFL.com, 6/11). Meanwhile, in DC, Matt Bonesteel writes, "It is the 'This is Your Brain on Drugs' of its time" (WASHINGTONPOST.com, 6/12).
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