May 24, 2016
Under Armour and UCLA are reportedly set to announce the largest apparel deal in the history of college sports with a 15-year, $280 million agreement.
It’s a massive increase of $28 million from the previously reported high of $252 million over 15 years between Nike and Ohio State, according to the ESPN.com report. Nike and Texas were close behind that deal at 15 years for $250 million.
The UCLA deal equates to $18.67 million per year. For comparison, the second-ranked school when Texas inked its contract with Nike last October to jump-start the massive numbers was Michigan at between 10.1 and 10.9 million per year, as noted by Kurt Schwerman of Campus Insiders.
“We knew that we were well-positioned to cut a deal. Under Armour came at us hard,” UCLA athletic director Dan Guerrero told David Wharton of the Los Angeles Times.
Under Armour founder Kevin Plank explained to Wharton that location played a key role: “This deal was about geography. It was important for us to plant our flag in L.A.”
It also helps that UCLA is the most successful program in NCAA history. The Bruins have recorded 112 team titles across both men’s and women’s competition, based on the most recent figures from NCAA.org, giving them a slight edge over rival Stanford for the all-time mark.
Now the question will be whether UCLA, which had previously worked with Adidas, gets a new look as part of the agreement. Under Armour has become known for pushing the envelope with its designs since breaking into the college game.
The company will surely have no shortage of options, given the Bruins’ already bold blue-and-gold color scheme, which should allow for some standout looks in the years ahead.
Read more UCLA Football news on BleacherReport.com