January 13, 2015

Oregon Leads the Business of College Football Branding

College football has become big business with athletic companies shelling out millions to outfit schools in their flashiest new gear. No school exemplifies this than more than the University of Oregon. Effectively known as Nike University. Nike’s founder, Phil Knight, is a graduate from Oregon. He has had a huge part in attracting top talent to play for Oregon.

At no point during the football season does Oregon wear the same uniform. They have hundreds of possible combinations and what seems like unlimited resources from Nike. Nike has not only grown their own brand but Oregon’s as well. This is so evident that during last night’s College Football National Championship, Oregon didn’t even wear uniforms sporting their school colors of green and yellow. They went for an all white, silver and grey color scheme. However, they did keep their signature duck wings.

The brand Nike has established for Oregon reaches much farther than uniforms and football cleats. In 2013, Oregon opened a brand new state-of-the-art $68 million football facility. The building contains locker rooms, coaching offices, a film room, hall of fame, a cafeteria and even a barbershop. Each piece of the facility embodies the Oregon brand throughout, incorporating school graphics and imagery at every point possible. I think one of the coolest pieces is a mural sculpture of a flock of ducks that represent each Oregon football player to be drafted into the NFL. With such an elite facility, it’s easy for Oregon to court such prized recruits and further the brand with a high level of play under a constant national spotlight.