Oct. 1, 2015 Under Armour will remain a big part of Auburn athletics with new 10-year dealBy Charles GoldbergAuburnTigers.comAUBURN, Ala. —
Bruce Pearl knew about Auburn and Under Armour before he became the school's basketball coach.
"You can't recognize an Auburn football uniform without an Under Armour logo on it," Pearl said.
The Auburn-Under Armour relationship that began in 2006 will continue with a new nine-year, $78.1 million deal the school and the athletic apparel company announced Thursday. The new contract includes $22.5 million in cash and $10 million worth of Under Armour stock in the deal that runs through the middle of 2025.
Auburn Director of Athletics Jay Jacobs said the new contract "gives us even a greater opportunity to enhance our overall student experience."
"The Auburn brand is so strong and Under Armour saw that. They are rewarding us for how strong our brand is how we do business and the way our students represent us. We can take that and make sure we even do more for our student-athletes."
Jacobs said the contract "gives us the strongest apparel and footwear partnership in the Southeastern Conference. It ranks as one of the top five in the nation."
David Benedict, the athletic department's chief operating officer said the new contract renews the trust between the school and Under Armour.
"What this means is both Auburn and Under Armour valued the previous 9½ years," Benedict said. "We've chosen to continue our partnership for the foreseeable future."
Under Armour said it was happy to extend the relationship.
"The Tigers are part of our brand's heritage and we are thrilled to have them as an integral part of our future," said Adam Peake, Under Armour's Executive Vice President, Global Marketing.
Auburn, which was one of the first schools to sign with Under Armour, renegotiated the final year of its original 10-year contract as part of the new package. The $78.1 million contract is worth $8.68 million annually to Auburn athletics, trumping the old 10-year contract that was worth $36.5 million and paid the school $3.5 million annually.
The new contract provides more product allotment for each of the school's 21 sports, more money from the company, Under Armour stock and an increase in the royalty rate Under Armour will pay for each item sold on the retail level.
Notably, Under Armour will increase its product allotment to Auburn athletic teams from $2.5 million annually to $4 million, based on retail cost.
"Our goal is take care of all our sports the same way," Benedict said.
Under Armour will also provide funds for marketing at events and graphics in athletic facilities. Benedict said Auburn will also be featured in Under Armour commercials.
"They're going to do some things from a national advertising campaign that they'll include us in," Benedict said. "Those are some things that were done early on in our relationship. They want to do that again a number of times through the new contract."
Under Armour has signed a variety of colleges since Auburn came on board, and has two of sports most recognizable names in NBA MVP Stephen Curry of Golden State and Masters and U.S. Open champ Jordan Spieth.
Pearl said Under Armour has been a "great partner" for his program as it continues to build its basketball presence. Under Armour reinforced its basketball footprint with Curry.
"They have Steph Curry, the No. 1 preseason team in Maryland and they had more teams in the NCAA Tournament last year than they've ever had. And their grassroots basketball has improved," Pearl said. "Now, we're trying to give Under Armour a return of their investment in basketball."Story: Auburn athletes happy with new Under Armour gearCharles Goldberg is a Senior Writer at AuburnTigers.com. Follow him on Twitter: