Nevada Wolf Pack announces partnership with Adidas
It was a mini celebration to be sure, and with good reason.
Doug Knuth, the University of Nevada athletic director, announced on Wednesday the school had entered a multi-year partnership with Adidas.
Adidas, based out of Portland, Oregon, will supply all 16 of Nevada’s intercollegiate sports programs with uniforms, footwear, apparel, headwear, equipment and accessories through the 2024-25 school year.
Arizona State, Georgia Tech, Indiana, Kansas, Louisville, Miami, Mississippi State, Nebraska, North Carolina State, Rutgers and Texas A&M are among the NCAA schools that have contracts with Adidas.
The agreement ends a 10-year relationship with Nike. Nevada was an Adidas client from 2005-07. The Pack also entertained an offer to re-sign with Nike.
“We are thrilled to partner with Adidas and join the Three Stripes family,” Knuth said. “Adidas is known around the world for developing, producing and delivering renowned performance gear. We’re excited about their level of service and commitment to this partnership.
“As a kid in the ’70s and early ’80s I proudly wore my Stan Smith tennis shoes. Those days they were still called tennis shoes. I was loyal. I wore them all the time. Many a summer day my friends and I wondered what Adidas stood for. We just assumed it was an acronym for “All Day I Dream About Sports.”
It actually stands for the creator of the company, Adi Dassler.
In doing his research, Knuth found out a lot more about the company.
“Adidas stands for the athlete. From its earliest days, Adidas believed in building (products) to enhance performance. It’s all about the athlete. At the very core it’s about innovation and technology. Adidas always will be about athletes. We (at Nevada) put the student-athlete on top of everything we do.
“Secondly, Adidas stands for value; great products at a good price. As consumers and as an athletic director it’s what we are looking for so we can stretch our dollar. It (the company) also stands for service. Everybody we talked to across country said service is a lot better (than other companies). When you have needs can you can call somebody at Adidas and they answer your question right away.”
Derek Stucker, the director of NCAA Team Services for Adidas, was on hand for the event.
“I’d like to thank the entire administration,” Stucker said. “For me personally it (UNR and Reno) has a hometown feeling. My parents have decided to reside here in town, and I’m sure Doug and Rory (Hickok, associate AD) will be hitting them up for season tickets or donation requests. It’s great to come to a wonderful part of the country.
“We have resurrected our brand the last couple of years. I’m super excited. This is a coming out party for both of us. We’re excited to be part of the community.”
Stucker could’ve been talking about the men’s and women’s basketball teams. Both programs have improved under new coaches, Eric Musselman and Amanda Levens.
Musselman led Nevada to a school-tying 29 wins last season, and the team came within a basket of an Elite 8 game against Kansas State. And many feel had Nevada outlasted Loyola, it would’ve beaten KSU and made the Final Four.
Levens, meanwhile, took her women’s team to the Mountain West finals before losing to Boise State.
“Basketball was a big part of it,” Stucker admitted. “It helps when teams are successful. The more you win (teams you sponsor) the more you will sell. You associate with programs on the rise.”
Certainly playing in the NCAA Tournament allows millions of viewers to see what Adidas offers in the way of basketball shoes. The exposure helps the school and the company.
Musselman, sporting an old pair of Adidas shoes, was happy about the announcement.
“It’s great,” he said. “The players are excited, and we’re excited as a staff. The guys have to wear the same color scheme. It’s not important whether it’s a high-top or low-top.”
Nevada’s men’s team wore 13 different basketball uniforms last year as a Nike client. It’s unknown how many the team will wear this coming season under Adidas.