STUCK IN THE PIT: In Ft. Worth, Carlos Mendez notes NASCAR driver Trevor Bayne is "unable to get sponsorship to race his Nationwide car at Texas Motor Speedway this weekend," and he "can't even say how many more races he'll be able to run the rest of the year." Ford EcoBoost sponsored him for three races, and he had Roush Fenway Racing's 25th anniversary logo "on the hood for the first race." Two weeks ago, he had "backing from yourracecar.com and Crawdads Classics." However, Mendez notes Bayne does "have a Sprint Cup car." His No. 21 Ford, "owned by the Wood Brothers, is entered in Saturday night's Samsung Mobile 500" (FT. WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM, 4/11).
DUGOUT DEALS: Rays 3B Evan Longoria joined pilot and aerobatics champion Kirby Chambliss for a ride over Tampa in a custom two-seater Edge 540 plane, marking Longoria's first endeavor as a Red Bull athlete. He joins a roster of athletes including MLB Giants P Tim Lincecum, Clippers F Blake Griffin, Celtics G Rajon Rondo, Nets G Deron Williams, skier Lindsey Vonn, Dolphins RB Reggie Bush and Cowboys LB DeMarcus Ware (Red Bull)....Majestic Athletic’s new MLB ads debut this week on MLB broadcasts. The ads from agency Periscope has Red Sox DH David Ortiz and Blue Jays LF Jose Bautista literally “riding the backs" of the fans who wear their jerseys. The ad will run through the '12 season (Terry Lefton, THE DAILY).
NOTES: In Houston, Joseph Duarte cited a source as saying yesterday that Rice Univ. is "close to an apparel agreement for its football program" with adidas. An announcement is "expected soon." The agreement will "begin with football and be a slow rollout that eventually includes all sports on campus" (CHRON.com, 4/10)....Subaru has signed a two-year deal with the MLS Rapids and MLS Real Salt Lake to be the presenting sponsor of the Subaru Rocky Mountain Cup. Real Salt Lake won the first of three rivalry matches at home Saturday (THE DAILY).