A look at, among power-conference teams, which schools are aligned with which shoe company. Nike is the dominant competitor in the market, with contracts with 43 out of the 65 schools. Under Armour has 11 and Adidas has 10. Russell Athletic has, for the next year, one.
Nike 9, Adidas 3, Under Armour 2, Russell Athletic (for now) 1. Boston College has been an Under Armour school since 2010, which was so long ago that the company won the Eagles away from Reebok. Miami was a big win for Adidas, winning the contract in 2015. The Hurricanes had been aligned with Nike since 1985, the first school to sell the apparel rights for all of its teams to one outfitter.
Nike 8, Under Armour 3, Adidas 3. Under Armour nabbed Wisconsin in 2015 after the Badgers had been with Adidas since 2001. By losing Wisconsin, Michigan, UCLA and others in recent years, Indiana has become one of Adidas’ bigger partners, for better or worse. The IU/Adidas deal is worth $6.7 million annually. Tech fans hoping for Under Armour might take encouragement from the company’s contracts with Northwestern, a school in a major market with a prestigious reputation. On the other hand, the deal was struck in 2011. Rutgers jumped from Nike to Adidas earlier this year.
Nike 8, Adidas 1, Under Armour 1. Adidas took Kansas from Nike in 2005 with a deal worth five times its previous contract Texas Tech would seem an important client for Under Armour, as it’s the company’s only power-conference school in the state.
Nike 8, Under Armour 3, Adidas 1. Under Armour’s signing of UCLA (Adidas) and Cal (from Nike) were big wins for the company in 2016 in getting a foothold on the West Coast. Adidas lured Arizona State away from Nike in 2014 with a much better offer. AD Ray Anderson said at the time that he wanted an apparel provider that would make the Sun Devils a priority. Utah’s football team has worn Under Armour since 2008 and the rest of the athletic department followed three years later.
Nike 10, Under Armour 2, Adidas 2. Longtime Under Armour endorsers Auburn and South Carolina have been two of the company’s biggest clients. When Auburn and Under Armour extended their deal in 2015, it was reportedly the third biggest in the country and the biggest in the SEC. South Carolina’s, in 2016, was the second largest in the SEC. Mississippi State has been an Adidas client since 2009. Fans have been bothered that their uniforms looked too much like Texas A&M’s, another Adidas client.