The University of Toledo Athletic Department has agreed to a multi-year exclusive partnership with Nike beginning July 1, UT Vice President and Athletic Director Mike O’Brien announced today.
The six-year agreement will make Nike the official athletic footwear, apparel, accessory and equipment brand for all 16 of Toledo’s varsity sports through the 2022-23 season. Previously, UT’s sports programs had separate agreements with various apparel brands.
“We are very pleased to be teaming up with Nike for all of our sports,” O’Brien said. “Nike is one of the most recognizable and innovative brands in the world, so we feel this partnership will be very beneficial for our program. Partnering with Nike will also create a consistent brand for our Athletic Department. Many of our student-athletes have told me that they are very excited to be wearing the swoosh on their uniforms, shoes and other apparel.”
“Nike is proud to partner with The University of Toledo Athletic Department,” said Kit Morris, Nike senior director of college sports marketing. “We look forward to outfitting Rocket student-athletes with the best in Nike footwear, uniform and apparel innovation.”
UT will begin rolling out Nike-branded apparel for football and other sports over the upcoming weeks. Rocky’s Locker, the official apparel store of Rocket Athletics located in Savage Arena, also will be featuring new Nike apparel.
“Nike is an incredible athletic brand with strong appeal to our players and fans,” said Football Coach Jason Candle. “Our players are thrilled to be wearing Nike footwear and uniforms this fall. I’m looking forward to a tremendous partnership with Nike and Toledo football in the years to come.”
“I’m excited about making the switch to Nike,” said Cody Thompson, senior football player. “I’ve always been a Nike guy growing up. They’re the alpha dog of the sports world. I can’t wait!”
“Toledo women’s basketball has been with Nike since 2008. We greatly value the quality Nike provides in their shoes, apparel and basketballs,” said Women’s Basketball Coach Tricia Cullop. “I’m excited to see our entire athletic department partner with Nike as it unifies our Toledo brand. Not only do our players and coaches appreciate wearing Nike apparel and shoes, but it is also of great value on the recruiting trail. Recruits do pay attention to what you wear, as many players grow up relying on the quality of Nike’s products and have a wish to continue wearing it in the future.”
Men’s Basketball Coach Tod Kowalczyk said, “I am extremely proud of the 15-year relationship I have had with Nike college basketball. Nike is by far the leader in their industry and always has the best product. I can assure you, our players and coaches would not want anything but Nike. We are a proud Nike basketball program.”
“We’re very excited to be partnering with Nike. They are the premier apparel and footwear company in the sports world,” said Track/Cross Country Coach Linh Nguyen. “This partnership shows a continued commitment to being the very best at The University of Toledo. The cross country and track program couldn’t be happier to outfit our student-athletes in the world’s most recognizable brand.”
Nike Inc., based near Beaverton, Ore., is the world’s leading designer, marketer and distributor of authentic athletic footwear, apparel, equipment and accessories for a wide variety of sports and fitness activities. Wholly owned Nike Inc. subsidiary brands include Converse, which designs, markets and distributes athletic lifestyle footwear, apparel and accessories; and Hurley, which designs, markets and distributes surf and youth lifestyle footwear, apparel and accessories.