USF strikes apparel deal with Adidas

USF sports teams will be outfitted in Adidas gear starting next summer.
Published Dec. 6, 2017|Updated Dec. 6, 2017

Seven months before its apparel deal with Under Armour formally ends, USF announced it has reached an eight-year partnership with Adidas that begins next summer.

At the core of the contract — effective July 1, 2018 — Adidas will supply USF with $2.8 million in product (from uniforms to footwear to accessories) and $150,000 in cash annually. It will give an additional $300,000 in product during the first year of the agreement.

"The Adidas brand is storied, iconic and respected worldwide and they continue to push game-changing products forward with creativity and cutting-edge technology," USF athletic director Mark Harlan, who signed the contract on Nov. 29, said in a school news release.

"We think this is a perfect fit with our university, athletic teams and aspirations and look forward to an exciting future with Adidas."

While providing more in apparel to USF over the course of the contract, the Adidas partnership gives less cash to USF than its Under Armour deal.

In July 2012, USF agreed to a lucrative extension to keep Under Armour as the official outfitter of Bulls sports teams through 2018, with the Maryland-based apparel company providing $4.22 million in cash, $7.17 million in product and another $1.08 million in advertising during USF broadcasts.

With Adidas, USF can earn up to $600,000 a year in bonus merchandise (for exceeding annual purchase volumes) and up to $500,000 a year in cash bonuses for the performance of its teams and coaches.

Example: The Bulls receive an extra $5,000 if women's basketball coach Jose Fernandez is named American Athletic Conference Coach of the Year, an additional $50,000 if the football team finishes in the top 25, and an extra $500,000 if the football team wins a national title.

The contract also states if USF becomes a member of a Power Five conference during the life of the deal, Adidas agrees to renegotiate it "to account for any proportional increase in value and/or exposure due to such membership."

Any such  renegotiation almost certainly would represent a windfall for USF. Louisville agreed to a 10-year, $160 million extension with Adidas this past summer.

Currently, Adidas serves as official apparel provider for more than 100 college programs including Miami, Texas A&M, Nebraska and Georgia Tech.