ESPN.com's Ivan Maisel reports Penn State over the last two years has "dropped from 10th to 19th in royalty earnings on logoed merchandise among FBS schools who work with the Collegiate Licensing Company." It "seemed like all Penn State fans fell in love with the fight in last year’s 8-4 football team," but the drop in royalties "gives voice to the silent." A portion of PSU fans are "keeping their wallets closed" (ESPN.com, 8/13).
CAT-LIKE REFLEX: MARKETING WEEK's Sebastian Joseph reported Puma is "launching a global football hub where fans can interact with players" including FC Barcelona MF Cesc Fabregas and Manchester City MF Yaya Toure "as it sets in motion plans to rival Nike and Adidas during next year’s World Cup." The portal "invites fans to complete a series of monthly challenges to win prizes." Visitors also can "submit suggestions for match-day gestures such as a new pre-match ritual or a goal celebration with the winning proposals being performed by one of Puma’s football ambassadors." In addition, the portal will "give fans the chance to preview Puma’s upcoming boot and kit launches" (MARKETINGWEEK.co.uk, 8/12).
FLY BY NIGHT: In San Diego, Jonathan Horn reported Chargers RB Ryan Mathews is "teaming up with friends to launch the BodyFly, a 24-inch wide, 5-inch thick octagon that is essentially a portable fly machine." The group has "a prototype that cost $30,000, and plans to begin a Kickstarter campaign." Mathews said that the machine "would be rolled out in San Diego before it goes to other parts of the country" (SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, 8/12).
MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS: In Toronto, Francine Kopun writes Canadian Tire's purchase of Pro Hockey Life Sporting Goods adds "more expertise to its sports equipment and clothing banners." Pro Hockey Life "operates 23 stores in five provinces under three banners, including Sports Gilbert Rousseau and L’Entrepôt du Hockey." The stores "specialize in providing expert advice to customers and top-notch hockey equipment in a big box 18,000-square-foot format" (TORONTO STAR, 8/13).