Cullowhee, N.C. - Western Carolina Catamount Athletics has entered into a multi-year agreement with adidas to become its official all-sports apparel provider beginning with the 2016-17 academic year, according to an announcement by WCU Director of Athletics, Randy Eaton.
The five-year partnership takes effect on July 1, 2016, and marks the first exclusive and comprehensive all-sports apparel deal for Western Carolina Athletics’ 16 intercollegiate sport programs. Several WCU sports had independently used adidas products for uniforms, sideline and travel gear over the past few years, including Catamount football, men’s basketball and volleyball, and women’s basketball went “All-In” with adidas prior to this season.
“I am extremely pleased to be partnering with adidas, a world-wide leader in athletic performance apparel,” said Eaton of the benchmark deal for Catamount Athletics. “This agreement will allow all of our student-athletes to practice and compete in world-renowned performance products. The partnership will also enhance the purchasing power for all of our teams, while maintaining the highest quality of performance products for our student-athletes.”
Eaton added, “The ability to join the adidas brand with that of Western Carolina Athletics was an opportunity we had been anticipating since my arrival in 2011. I look forward to a long and prosperous partnership between WCU Athletics and adidas.”
“We look forward to outfitting the Catamounts in our newest and most innovative apparel and uniforms,” said Jim Murphy, Director of NCAA Sports Marketing for adidas America. "Our mission is to help athletes perform better and this new partnership continues to demonstrate our commitment to U.S. college sports and delivering the best high-performance products to teams and athletes.”
The adidas apparel deal includes all footwear, uniforms and additional clothing worn by Catamount student-athletes, coaches and administration. It will also make adidas an official provider of WCU gear through numerous retail outlets. The Catamounts join the Southern Conference – which recently announced a three-year agreement – and fellow SoCon member, Chattanooga, as well as in-state sister school, East Carolina, in a partnership with adidas.
adidas is a global designer, developer and marketer of athletic footwear, apparel and accessories with the mission to make all athletes better. adidas is the official uniform, footwear and apparel provider for more than 100 collegiate programs, including Arizona State, Indiana, Louisville, Miami, Mississippi State, Nebraska, North Carolina State, Texas A&M and UCLA. adidas has marketing agreements with the National Basketball Association (NBA), National Football League (NFL), Major League Baseball (MLB) and Major League Soccer (MLS).
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING…
Western Carolina head football coach Mark Speir:
“I am extremely ecstatic about the announcement that our athletic department is going with adidas as an official all-sports apparel provider. We’ve been with them the past two years as a football program and everything from the product to the service has been unbelievable. I feel like the partnership will have a huge impact on our entire department. From our present student-athletes to our recruiting efforts of future Catamounts, the adidas partnership has enhanced our program and is helping move us to a championship level.”
Western Carolina head men’s basketball coach Larry Hunter:
“Over the past 15 years – including my 11 seasons in Cullowhee – I’ve had the privilege of working with adidas for our men’s basketball practice and game uniforms, shoes, and travel gear. They are first and foremost great people to work with; they are very loyal. ¬I am excited for our department in completing this agreement across the board. I feel it will greatly benefit all of our student-athletes.”
Western Carolina head women’s basketball coach Stephanie McCormick:
“It’s a huge step forward for our department to sign a contract with a major athletic apparel company with as great a reputation as adidas. Adidas has done a fantastic job and worked really hard to meet the needs of Western Carolina women’s basketball this year. I’m excited about the transition to adidas as it solidifies the branding and status of the entire department. With this deal, WCU Athletics continues to aggressively move toward unity across all sports improving the experience of each and every student-athlete. I personally thank our Athletic Director, Randy Eaton, and adidas for making this happen.”
Western Carolina head baseball coach Bobby Moranda:
“This is an exciting time for Catamount athletics, and I’m excited about what this partnership will do for the future of the Catamount baseball program. As a brand, adidas is getting really aggressive in baseball as a whole, and we look forward to the partnership.”