In this week’s SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, Terry Lefton reports Blue Jays RF José Bautista is “the newest endorser for Coke” in Canada. Lightning C Steven Stamkos also “will also appear in the point-of-sale ads, and social media video was shot last week at the Rogers Centre in Toronto.” Bautista’s image on Coke Zero packaging, along with TV ads, is "also expected later this year” (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 6/24 issue). Meanwhile, Dickies announced that Blue Jays P R.A. Dickey will be part of a "Built To Work" Facebook contest. The activation is an extension of the clothing brand's recently launched ad campaign of the same name, and will run through the back-to-school and holiday seasons on digital and print channels (Dickies).
PAINT IT BLACK: Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment has signed a marketing partnership deal with BlackBerry making the company the official mobile computing partner of the Maple Leafs, Raptors and AHL Marlies. Financial terms of the multiyear deal were not disclosed. BlackBerry will work with MLSE to create new platforms to allow fans to connect with the teams. The company also will create a fan app for BlackBerry smartphones. In addition, BlackBerry will have signage throughout Air Canada Centre. This marks MLSE’s first deal with BlackBerry (John Lombardo, Staff Writer).
RING MY BELL: The Jackson CLARION-LEDGER wrote vendors in Omaha selling Mississippi State Univ. merchandise "caught on to Bulldogs culture" prior to the school's loss to UCLA in the College World Series yesterday. In addition to the "usual T-shirts depicting the two schools playing for a national title, the creators saved some of the best designs for last." One shirt read "Blood Sweat and Beard," while another featured the copy "I got a fever" and showed a "silhouette of Will Ferrell with a cowbell, from the 'Saturday Night Live' skit." A final shirt read “Love God, Sweet Tea and the SEC" (CLARIONLEDGER.com, 6/25).
DRAGGIN' THE LINE: Mello Yello this week released a special NHRA-branded can in select convenience stores across seven cities. The limited-edition cans are available in: Atlanta; Brainerd, Minn.; Chicago; Epping, N.H.; Indianapolis; Norwalk, Ohio; and Topeka. The 16-ounce cans, which feature the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series logo flanked by flaming mufflers, can be redeemed for an $8 discount on NHRA race tickets. Mello Yello, a Coca-Cola brand, became the title sponsor of the NHRA’s top drag racing series this year (Tripp Mickle, Staff Writer).