When you’re Michael Jordan’s son playing basketball, the spotlight is on you whether you like it or not. With this heritage to uphold, a lot is expected when you step onto the pitch.
With Michael’s long-standing lucrative relationship with Nike, it’s no surprise that his son wants to follow in his father’s footsteps and play while wearing Nike shoes.
This posed a little problem, however. Marcus Jordan decided to go to college at a school that had a contract with Nike’s competitor, Adidas. It became a $ 3 million bet for Marcus and his school.
Marcus Jordan chose the University of Central Florida despite connection with Adidas
Complex writes about the complex situation involving Marcus and his shoes in 2009. In an interview with the site, Marcus recalls that he was recruited by UCF. When he visited the school, he was told that “it wouldn’t be a problem” if he wore Nike owned Jordans.
Marcus says he’s been assured representatives from the school have spoken to regional Adidas representatives. “that wouldn’t be a problem” as they understood that as Michael’s son it made sense for Marcus to wear Jordans.
When Marcus arrived on campus in the fall, he heard rumors that Adidas was crazy. The company wanted him to wear his shoes instead of the Jordans. UCF athletic director and coach at the time stuck by Marcus. He told the young athlete: “We will honor what we told you, because the people we were dealing with told us that it was not a problem.”
It didn’t suit the folks at Adidas, however. The situation exploded when Marcus wore his Jordans in a preseason game against Saint Leo University.
Adidas has dropped UCF’s $ 3 million contract
After Marcus wore the Jordans in that exhibition match, Adidas quickly dropped out of UCF, costing the school around $ 3 million in sponsorship. Nike saw this as an opportunity and tried to get sponsorship from UCF.
UCF had to be careful when signing the deal with Nike so that there were no legal repercussions to deal with. They wanted to make sure it didn’t look like Marcus was wearing the shoes on purpose so that school could switch from Adidas to Nike to appease his father.
The UCF did not want to give the impression of breaking its contract with Adidas. As Marcus explains, it’s not like they’ve sat down and said, “Hey, we’ve got to make this Nike school. Marcus says that “it just happened,” with Nike “coming in and taking over the school” with what he believes is a five-year contract.
How Marcus Jordan’s classmates treated him during the situation
When Adidas ended his contract with UCF because of Marcus wearing Jordans, you might think his classmates would be upset about what happened, but they weren’t.
He describes it as “more of an inside joke” because Adidas completely ditched UCF, so “no one in any sport was getting any product. There were no more tees, there were Nothing more. ”The athletes joked that it was all Marcus’ fault.
When it was rumored that Nike was taking over the sponsorship of the school, Marcus said that “all the kids in the school were excited, even those who didn’t play sports.” It didn’t just mean Nike gear for athletes. This meant that Nike gear would also be available in the school bookstore.
He says people even thanked him when Nike joined UCF. Marcus says, “I guess I have some credit for that,” even though his classmates didn’t necessarily know the whole story at the time.
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