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Tennessee Unveils New Nike Uniforms

By John Burns, Associate Editor
July 6, 2015

UT Jerseys

The University of Tennessee revealed its new Nike uniforms last week after signing a deal with the apparel giant in early 2014.

Tennesse’s star running back Jalen Hurd was the first to model the Vols’ new football uniforms — an orange home style and a gray alternate.

“We wanted to make sure that we were innovative, that we stay up with the times, but we really respect the great tradition we have at the University of Tennessee,” said head football coach Butch Jones during the reveal.

Previously, Tennessee sported adidas uniforms, and the switch to Nike coincided with the school’s rebranding of most of its women’s sports teams — a move made to promote consistency across all sports, according to the school. From now on, only the women’s basketball team will be known as the Lady Vols, while all the rest will be known as the Volunteers, or Vols for short.

According to a Knoxville News Sentinel report, the Vols received $1.95 million in base compensation from adidas each of the past five years. In the first four years of the eight-year deal Nike deal announced in January 2014, the company will pay the University of Tennessee $1 million a year. In years five to eight, the Vols will get less than half what they were making from adidas — $900,000 per year.

Also according to the report, Nike gave the University of Tennessee a $2 million signing bonus, which the Vols received last summer. But even with that factored in, the $1.2 million per year Nike pays throughout the life of the contract is $750,000 per year less than the school’s deal with adidas.

With adidas, the University of Tennessee received $1.8 million of free products for department use per year and a 9% royalty on adidas’ adjusted gross sales of UT-branded products, with a guaranteed minimum royalty of $200,000 per year, according to the Knoxville News Sentinel.

By comparison, Nike will provide $3.4 million in free product for program use in 2015-16 and an average of $2.96 million per year throughout the life of the contract. Tennessee will receive 13% of royalties on all net sales of Nike’s UT-branded products, according to the report.

For more information, visit utk.edu. — J.B.