If President Clinton's proposed tobacco regulations go into
effect in a year, it "will probably drive cigarette advertisers
out of sports," according to Richard Alm in the DALLAS MORNING
NEWS. Since the government banned TV ads more than 20 years ago,
and last year forced in-stadium tobacco signage to stay clear of
TV cameras, Alm notes "most sports have already weaned themselves
from cigarette makers' money." He adds NASCAR is a "red-hot
property, quite capable of finding another corporate Daddy
Warbucks to keep it going." Alm writes beer, however, "is quite
another story" as the brewing industry is one of the "financial
pylons" supporting American sports, as beer companies sponsor
nearly every sport. Beer companies are also a major supporter of
sports on TV. Alm notes that the Clinton Administration "hasn't
yet" targeted the connection between beer and sports, "but it's
hard to see how the mindset that wanted cigarettes out of sports
could allow beer to stay in." If Washington decides to try and
take beer out, "it will create more havoc than the decision to go
after the cigarette companies" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 8/26).
ONE MAN'S TAKE: ESPN's Keith Olbermann on NASCAR's tobacco
advertising: "Spokesmen for the tobacco industry will actually
sit there and tell you with a straight face that their
sponsorship of NASCAR, an estimated $10 million a year by R.J.
Reynolds alone, is not done to evade the 26 year-old ban on
cigarette ads on TV. It's just a coincidence that painting
advertising and logos on stock cars and ballparks fences is the
only way that cigarette companies can get their products shown or
mentioned on TV, live or on highlights shows such as this one.
Just a coincidence" ("SportsCenter," ESPN, 8/26).
A START OR FINISH? Philip Morris Europe said it was
withdrawing its sponsorship of the McLaren Formula One auto-
racing team, three years after it won its last championship.
German tobacco company Reemtsma will take over sponsorship for
its West cigarette brand (Montreal GAZETTE, 8/27).
Visual Edge's developing and marketing of videotape golf
lessons with Greg Norman is profiled in GOLF WORLD. Visual
Edge's concept features "One-on-One" instruction combining video
footage of a golfer's swing with a synchronized split-screen
comparison to Norman's. Norman also provides pre-recorded
instructional commentary and analysis. Visual Edge CEO Earl
Takefman says the company plans to go around the country in 50
vans containing the video and computer equipment, and give the
one-on-one lessons as tee prizes for special events and
tournaments, or simply as a teaching aid at golf facilities.
Each lesson tape is expected to cost $50. Norman's Great White
Shark Enterprises Managing Dir Frank Williams is a board director
of Visual Edge, as is White Sox Vice Chair Eddie Einhorn.
According to GOLFWORLD's Steve Pike, Norman's deal with Visual
Edge calls for him to be paid $3.3M over three years, with that
royalty applied against a royalty equal to 8% of Visual Edge's
new revenue (GOLF WORLD, 8/23 issue).
GOLF NEWS AND NOTES: Spalding Worldwide Senior VP & GM/Golf
Scott Creelman "dismissed" any notions that new parent KKR would
apply its "divide and plunder tactics" with Spalding (GOLFWEEK,
8/24 issue)....Mark Brooks' agent, David Winkle, says Brooks' PGA
Championship victory figures to be worth "at least" $5M over the
next five years when factoring in new endorsements and appearance
fees (GOLFWEEK, 8/24 issue)....In Chicago, George Lazarus
profiles Tommy Armour Golf, noting the company will finish FY '96
with sales "a bit less than" $100M, but industry sources say
Armour can hit sales of $150M in FY '97 (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 8/27).
New York-based Topps Co. has named Griffin Bacal, New York,
for its $7-10M ad account (AD AGE ONLINE, 8/27). ...WorldCom
agreed to buy MFS Communications in a stock deal worth
approximately $12B. WorldCom signed Michael Jordan to an
endorsement deal earlier this year (N.Y. TIMES, 8/27).
...Cleveland-based Crooked River Brewing Company will be the
official beer of the '97 Medic Drug Grand Prix of Cleveland
(Medic Drug Grand Prix)....Adidas Marketing Exec Marc Scales on
endorser Keyshawn Johnson: "We see Keyshawn as being a leader
among the new generation of athletes that not only take their on-
the-field job seriously, but take their off-the-field job
seriously as well" (SPORT, 10/96).
Sprint will begin its NFL sponsorship September 2 with new
ads promoting its Spree calling cards, according to Kim Cleland
of ADVERTISING AGE. A TV, radio and print campaign from
Bernstein-Rein, Kansas City, MO, stars Bills QB Jim Kelly and
Coach Marv Levy praising the "no bills" benefits of the cards.
Sprint is expected to spend $60M this year to promote their NFL
deal and will launch a new NFL ad campaign featuring spokesperson
Candice Bergen. J. Walter Thompson, San Francisco handles.
Sprint Dir of Sports Marketing Mike Goff said their NFL plans
will build toward a "crescendo" at playoff and Super Bowl time,
"when the bulk of our media will air." Sprint has "basically
finalized" marketing deals with every NFL team, except the
Cowboys (AD AGE, 8/26).
BLITZ-KRIEG: Starting Monday, Sprint begins their "Sense
Dime Blitz," a 17-week regular season promo giving fans the
chance to purchase game tickets and airfare to see NFL games.
The first winners will be announced Monday in Dallas, where they
will pay a dime-a-minute for a 260-minute round trip flight to
and from Chicago -- or $26 times two for winner and a friend, for
Monday's Cowboys-Bears game. Similar events will be held in
Miami, Boston, San Francisco, Seattle, Chicago, Atlanta and