SBJ/20100913/This Weeks Issue

Pac-10 Properties fills vacancy with Bank of the West

After going a year without a bank sponsor, Fox Sports Net’s Pac-10 Properties signed Bank of the West as the conference’s official bank.

The two-year deal will run the course of FSN’s media deal with the Pac-10, which expires at the end of the 2011-12 school year.

FSN would not attach a specific dollar figure to the deal, but sponsorships like this generally approach $1 million annually.

The bank will have a presence at most Pac-10 events, such as the men’s basketball tournament. It will be presenting sponsor of the Pac-10 Hall of Honor, which is part of the conference’s basketball tournament.

But neither the bank nor the conference has made any plans for a football championship game, which is expected to be played once the conference expands to 12 teams next year.

“We left that open,” said Mitch Huberman, a senior vice president at FSN, who manages Pac-10 Properties and sells the inventory. “We’ll look at that once it becomes a reality.”

As part of the deal, Bank of the West will have broadcast and print media spots, plus on-site signage. Bank of the West will also provide corporate banking services to the conference.

“Anywhere the Pac-10 is on FSN, you’ll see Bank of the West,” Huberman said.

The deal is a natural fit for Bank of the West, which already sponsors the athletic programs of two conference schools (Cal and UCLA), plus a third that will enter the conference next year (Colorado). The company has a presence throughout the entire Pac-10 footprint. Based in San Francisco, it is the third-largest commercial bank in the western U.S.

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