The University of Michigan announced last week they were trading in their three golden stripes for the trendy Nike swoosh. And after an announcement Wednesday from the University detailing the historic deal, we know why they made the trade.
The Wolverines said that the shoe and apparel deal with Nike is worth $169 million over 15 years, making it by far the richest of any apparel contract in collegiate athletics.
According to contract details released by the Michigan athletic department, Nike will supply all 31 U-M athletic programs with uniforms, footwear, apparel and equipment; will pay $76.8 million in cash annually and $80.2 million in apparel. The deal begins August 1, 2016 and runs until 2027, with an option to extend to 2031.
“After careful consideration, the right partner for the University of Michigan was Nike,” said interim athletic director Jim Hackett in a written statement.
Michigan will also be able to offer three student internships at Nike headquarters.
Additionally, according to U-M, the school and Nike “”will collaborate throughout the agreement on innovation initiatives in sports technology, design and best practices including at least two community events per year that support and celebrate education in health and wellness initiatives.”
The shocking thing about the contract, as lucrative as it is, is that, according to ESPN’s Darren Rovell, it was the cheapest offer for the rights to be U-M’s official apparel provider.
Most outrageous part of the Nike-Michigan deal for $169 million? Sources tell me Nike WAS THE LOWEST BIDDER.
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) July 15, 2015
Michigan has partnered with Adidas since 2007 in an eight-year deal valued at $60 million in cash and merchandise, plus a $6.5 million signing bonus.
Michigan’s Adidas deal was the largest of its kind among college sports, until Notre Dame announced a switch from Adidas to Under Armour in January 2014, signing a 10-year deal reportedly worth more than $90 million.
This announcement, sure to capture the likes of many potential U-M recruits, is more offseason momentum for new head coach Jim Harbaugh, who looks to rebuild a struggling Wolverines program that fired coach Brady Hoke after a 5-7 season last December.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports