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Volume 24 No. 159

Marketing and Sponsorship

Redskins QB Robert Griffin III has overtaken Broncos QB Peyton Manning as the NFL's top jersey seller. Griffin is followed by Manning and Packers QB Aaron Rodgers for all jerseys bought on between April 1 and Nov. 27. QBs make up 10 of the top 25, while Texans DE J.J. Watt jumped into the Top 25 at No. 17 (THE DAILY).'s James Walker notes when Jets QB Tim Tebow arrived in N.Y., his jersey sales "were near the top of the league" at No. 3. But Tebow "has been a seldom-used backup" and the "experiment has been a bust," dropping his sales to No. 8. But overall, "that is still a pretty strong showing for Tebow" (, 11/29).

1) Redskins QB Robert Griffin III 14) Panthers QB Cam Newton
2) Broncos QB Peyton Manning 15) Ravens LB Ray Lewis
3) Packers QB Aaron Rodgers 16) Cowboys LB DeMarcus Ware
4) Giants QB Eli Manning 17) Texans DE J.J. Watt
5) Patriots QB Tom Brady 18) Seahawks RB Marshawn Lynch
6) Colts QB Andrew Luck 19) Bears LB Brian Urlacher
7) Giants WR Victor Cruz 20) Cowboys QB Tony Romo
8) Jets QB Tim Tebow 21) Cowboys TE Jason Witten
9) Steelers S Troy Polamalu 22) Lions WR Calvin Johnson
10) 49ers LB Patrick Willis 23) 49ers RB Frank Gore
11) Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski 24) Giants DE Jason Pierre-Paul
12) Saints QB Drew Brees 25) Ravens RB Ray Rice
13) Packers LB Clay Matthews    

A BELTWAY BOON? In DC, Dan Steinberg noted local car dealership Lindsay Cars wrote on its Twitter feed, "If the Redskins shut out the Giants Dec 3 your Chevy may be free." Lindsay Chevy General Sales Manager Coslyn Ceballos said, "Our general manager is a Redskins fan, and the majority of our sales team are Redskins fans. We were saying, you know, what are the chances of the Redskins making something like that happen? ... But it's fun, and it can happen, and if it did, why not make it interesting?" Steinberg notes all customers who buy a new Chevy between this past Monday and next Monday "will be automatically entered into a drawing." If the Redskins win via shutout "eight of those buyers will be reimbursed for the purchase price of their new cars." Lindsay Cars GM Paul Smyth said, "Realistically, we don’t think that anyone will make a new vehicle purchase based only on the fact that they could win" (, 11/29).

Volkswagen VP/Marketing Kevin Mayer said that MLS club DC United "reached agreement with Volkswagen on a one-year extension of a sponsorship deal," according to Steven Goff of the WASHINGTON POST. The company also "has an option for 2014" with the current deal expiring Dec. 31. Mayer did not want to comment "on the specific financials but did say the terms have changed." The last contract "was worth almost" $3M annually to United. Volkswagen's U.S. offices are located in Herndon, Va. The company also is "negotiating a new deal with MLS" (, 11/29).

Chevrolet on Thursday unveiled its '13 NASCAR Sprint Cup series car, which will bear the moniker of the SS performance sedan that will debut next year. The SS replaces the Impala as the model name Chevy will use in NASCAR's top series. The Impala was used from '59-64 and again in '07-12. The limited-production version of the '14 Chevy SS will be available in late '13 (Chevrolet). In Detroit, Melissa Burden noted Chevrolet "expects the new vehicle to help bolster its position with performance cars" (DETROIT NEWS, 11/29).'s David Newton noted Chevy "went with a theme of a return to being relevant on the showroom floor, just as other manufacturers have done in unveiling their new models." NASCAR President Mike Helton said that it was "a milestone for the sport." Newton wrote the new car "in many ways is an admission that the common template Car of Tomorrow that was introduced in 2007 was a mistake in that it took the stock out of stock car racing." NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon said, "Race cars should always be street cars on steroids, and that's what we have now." Hendrick Motorsports Owner Rick Hendrick said that the new car "hopefully will give fans incentive to buy more cars that are on the track" (, 11/29). USA TODAY's Nate Ryan notes Chevy "was the last of three manufacturers to introduce its Sixth Generation race car that will make its debut in Cup next year." The new models "put an emphasis on relevance by adding brand identity so they more closely resemble their production counterparts." NASCAR also is "working with Goodyear on introducing tires that wear more quickly to enhance passing" (USA TODAY, 11/30).

The World Challenge charitable golf tournament may have lost its title sponsor, and the purse has gone from $5M to $4M this year, but Tiger Woods Foundation President & CEO Greg McLaughlin "believes the future of the tournament is fine," according to Jill Painter of the L.A. DAILY NEWS. McLaughlin said, "(It's) very viable. Absolutely. We're hopeful to have something (for the title sponsor) wrapped up much sooner." Painter notes despite the lower purse, "five of the top 10 ranked players in the world are here." Target and Chevron "have been past sponsors, but Chevron didn't continue with sponsorship for this year's tournament." McLaughlin said, "We got very close a couple times this year, and we were disappointed we weren't able to secure a title sponsor. We had one that fell apart at the 11th hour. Northwestern Mutual had been a five-plus year sponsor, and we went to them and they were kind enough to be the presenting sponsor. We were grateful." McLaughlin added that Tiger Woods is "covering the shortfall for the event." This tournament was the "impetus for the first Tiger Woods Learning Center in Anaheim, and Woods has donated his prize money to his foundation." McLaughlin "has meetings with corporations this week with the idea that he can secure a title sponsor early on for next year" (L.A. DAILY NEWS, 11/30).

McDonald’s on Thursday announced a new multiyear agreement with the NFL making the QSR the official restaurant sponsor of the league. McDonald’s will become the presenting sponsor of the '13 Pro Bowl and be able to feature the NFL logo and collective use of all 32 team logos in its marketing and advertising. The sponsorship begins next month with a Chicken McNugget Pro Bowl Promotion at participating McDonald’s across the U.S. (McDonald's). The move drew several responses on Twitter. Baltimore's 106.7 "The Fan" columnist David Elfin wrote, "McDonald's Bcoming NFL's official restaurant reminds me of 80s when #Redskins owner Jack Kent Cooke fed the players only MickeyD's 4 lunch." U/S Sports Advisors President Ken Ungar wrote, "'s signs new multiyear deal as official QSR, presenting of '13 Pro Bowl. Incremental value? Not sure." Media Brokers Int'l Media Dir Tom Greisch wrote, "NFL signs sponsorship with McDonalds as its Official Restaurant and one of their main objectives is Play 60 against childhood obesity. Ok…"

ON THE DOCK OF THE BAY: The Warriors have inked a top-tier sponsorship deal with Clorox, the team’s third “gold alliance” level partnership. The deal includes in-arena signage, in-arena promotion of a variety of the company’s brands, a media buy and a community service initiative. Financial terms of the multiyear deal were not disclosed, but previous "gold alliance" sponsors were seven-figure agreements. Oakland-based Clorox is a new team sponsor and joins Kaiser Permanente and Jawbone as “gold alliance” level sponsors. No agency was used in the deal (John Lombardo, SportsBusiness Journal).

FIT FOR A KING: Heat F LeBron James and Champs Sports on Thursday announced a partnership for digital content, consumer engagement and e-commerce. As part of the deal, James will star in a four-part video cover story in the next issue of SWAG, Champs Sports' new digital publication. The issue will be available on iTunes Dec. 10. The "SWAG16" video series features a list of James' 16 favorite things. In addition, will host an interactive SWAG16 Bracket Contest (Champs Sports).

DRIVING BUSINESS: NASCAR Senior VP & CMO Steve Phelps presented the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Champion Sponsor Award to Great Clips. Phelps said Great Clips “found a home in NASCAR by finding various creative ways to activate at and around our events.” Great Clips CFO Steve Overholser said, “Some of the things about our business that ties in so well with NASCAR as well is that we’re all about inspiration, community and legacy within our corporation, within our business and our franchisees as well, and the NASCAR family fits in so much with us.” He added NASCAR has “really helped us with recognition” (“NASCAR Nationwide Series & Camping World Truck Series Awards Banquet,” Speed, 11/29).