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What thorn? The thorn that has stuck with Pete Rose since then-MLB Commissioner Bart Giamatti slapped Charlie Hustle with a lifetime ban from baseball after the Dowd Report concluded that he bet on games, and possibly his own team, while managing the Cincinnati Reds.

Screen Shot 2015-03-18 at 2.07.07 PMBut there’s a new sheriff in town and Commissioner Rob Manfred has already received a formal request from Rose asking that the ban be lifted. Rose’s past attempts from former commissioners Fay Vincent and Bud Selig fell on deaf ears.

At 73 years old, it’s doubtful he’ll ever guide a major league team or even get back in the game in any significant management capacity. This is clearly about that small village in the county seat of Ostego County, New York.


Simple as that.

Rose has admitted he bet on games. And I think any reasonable sports fan can see, at the very least, that’s a huge conflict of interest. Sports has rules. Managing a team and betting on games is a big no-no. Did Rose purposefully rig games his Reds played in so he could make money, or even make other people rich? We may never know.

Regardless, it’s bad.

Former San Francisco 49er Jerry Rice admits he used illegal ‘stickum’ on gloves during his career. But last I checked, he’s still in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

“Two different situations,” you say? “Not the same thing,” you proclaim?

Illegal is illegal. Facts are facts.

And the fact is that, as a player, Rose had 4,256 career hits, still a major league record. Rose is a Hall-of-Famer. Not for managing. Not for likeability. But for being among the best hitters of all time and one of the hardest-nosed players ever. He was a hit machine!

Simple as that.

So, is it time, after all these years, for the new Commish to lift the ban so the Hall board can vote to induct Rose?

This isn’t the “Humanitarian Hall of Fame,” or the “Nicest Guy You’ll Ever Meet Hall of Fame.” It’s the Baseball Hall of Fame.

And it’s where Rose belongs.


Note: Athlete marketing principles, when stripped to the core, are universal. This is part 3 of a four-part series about how executives can and should be utilizing these practices. Read part 1 and part 2.


Now that we’ve, albeit briefly, discussed brands, I can tell you that everything you or your company engages in should align with and support the brand. In our world, professional sports is a business and it comes with a brand promise. The brand is what the athlete stands for to the fan and the promise is that the athlete’s behavior will stay true to the brand.

Simply put, when a hamburger advertised as “juicy” tastes like shoe leather, the brand promise is broken and consumers react by avoiding the joint.

It’s the same in sports – just consider Lance Armstrong or Tiger Woods. Both were arguably considered 537497415the best athlete in their sport and were widely regarded by fans, media and athletes alike across the world. Their brands were as the dedicated, hard-working, respectable, humble, everyday guy athletes. Until their indiscretions made front-page headlines and outrage ensued.

How you can apply it: Take an inventory of everything you or your company is involved with: organizations, boards, partnerships and sponsorships, events, online content and social media channels. If you haven’t already, Google yourself.

Are there common themes across these engagements? And if so, do they align with the desired brand? Identify inconsistencies and start to weed them out. Instead, put those assets toward better-aligned activities.

On the other hand, you may notice a consistent theme that isn’t part of your brand. Maybe you thought it wasn’t brand-worthy, or maybe it’s something so innate to your identity that it didn’t even occur to you to consider. If it’s important enough that it makes its way into nearly every piece of work, maybe it’s time to reconsider your brand.

Girls have been in the news a lot lately, and for good reason.

Last October, Ted Bishop was removed as PGA President for his sexist remarks on social media, referring to Ian Poulter as a “Lil Girl.” Bishop tweeted, “Really? Sounds like a little school girl squealing during recess. C’MON MAN!”

Bishop Twitter Post

Poulter’s response was fitting, and called into question a much larger issue. “Is being called a ‘lil girl’ meant to be derogatory or a put down? That’s pretty shocking and disappointing, especially coming from the leader of the PGA of America. No further comment,” Poulter said in a statement.

Just a few months prior, P&G’s Always brand released a short film based on female confidence. #LikeAGirl aimed at changing the way we as a society think and talk about girls, especially when it comes to sports and performance, by spotlighting the disparity between society’s view of what it means to do something “like a girl,” and what it means to young girls figuring out life for themselves.

Always shortened the film to a :60 spot for this year’s Super Bowl and garnered over 400,000 mentions the night of the game alone. Now, two months later, the film has been viewed more than 85 million times in 150 countries and is one of the most successful viral campaigns of all time.

In preparation for International Women’s Day this Sunday, Always released their follow-up film, “Like a Girl – Stronger Together.” Girls showcasing their skills in basketball, rock climbing, volleyball, martial arts, gymnastics and more, are packaged together to turn the once derogatory phrase into a message of strength.

The spot challenges viewers to “Share what you do #LikeAGirl.” So, after a month back to work following maternity leave (with twins) in the books, here’s what I do #LikeAGirl:

  • Develop athlete brands and national campaigns for elite sports clients
  • Serve as a leader within my company and my family
  • Empower others to follow their passion
  • Participate in the community on volunteer boards

Each day I walk into the office, I’m happy to say that I, in addition to my female colleagues, are supported and encouraged to think #likeagirl, lead #likeagirl and affect positive change #likeagirl. It’s clear that we are a growing sorority of leaders in sports and entertainment, and our ideas will change the world.



TimWellmanName: Tim Wellman
Hometown: Carmel, Indiana
School: Indiana University
Major: Sport Marketing and Management
Year: Junior
Internship: Summer 2014


Q: What are your favorite sports teams?
A: Indianapolis Colts, Boston Bruins, Indiana Hoosiers (Basketball) and Notre Dame Fighting Irish (Football)

Q: What’s your major and what do you hope to do after you graduate?
A: Right now, I’m a junior at IU majoring in Sport Marketing and Management and interning with the university’s athletic department. Hopefully after graduation, I can attain a position with an organization connected to the sports industry in some capacity.

Q: Why do you want to work in sports?
A: I have greatly enjoyed participating in and viewing sports since I was pretty young. It provides entertainment and promotes good health, and I would love to have a job where I enjoy what I do and believe in the cause.

The most intriguing thing about sports to me is how sporting events come together. There is a lot that goes into each event behind the scenes and it’s pretty cool how everything – from the media to sponsors to the venue – fit together to create the final product of what fans see and experience.

Q: What did you learn from your internship at U/S Sports Advisors?
A: I think interning at U/SSA proved to be very valuable as I had the opportunity to observe the type of work that goes on in a sports and entertainment marketing agency firsthand. That was definitely a welcomed break from the classroom where the information tends to be very general and theoretical. Interning provided me an improved, more in-depth understanding of the concepts discussed in class.

Q: As an IU basketball fan, what’s your take on their current season?
A: It’s kind of tough to really gauge IU basketball this year. When they’re hitting 3’s, they can beat anyone. But when they’re not, they can definitely struggle. I’m optimistic they can make some noise in the postseason. Hopefully they’ll win their last two regular season games and at least one game in the Big Ten Tournament to build some momentum for the big dance.

Connect with Tim on LinkedIn.

Screen Shot 2015-02-25 at 3.34.47 PMThe sport of NASCAR has rapidly evolved over the past 15 years – from a southern sport for good ol’ boys whose families ran moonshine back in the 50’s and 60’s to a widely popular sport across the country. Its growth, in part, can be attributed to an expanded schedule of 38 race- and event-filled weekends from coast to coast as well as more in-depth broadcast coverage of all three series.

February 2001 marked a new television contract for NASCAR, guaranteeing that every race would be broadcast. This was a first for the sport that had only had portions of their schedule broadcast prior to this first deal with FOX, NBC and Turner. While this was a big step forward, NASCAR has always looked for ways to build the sport’s overall popularity by continuing to improve access for fans.

Fast forward to the spring of 2013. NASCAR announced two new TV partnerships for record rights fees with FOX and NBC. With this deal, which officially began last weekend in Daytona, the first half of the season belongs to FOX/FOX Sports Network while the second half is covered by NBC/NBC Sports Network. Each network will broadcast all races from all three series: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR Xfinity Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.

This deal increases convenience for fans, eliminating distractions and allowing them to easily and quickly determine which channel is airing the race – something that has posed a problem in other sports. Time will tell if this will be a game changer, but the early indications of increased rights fees and positive fan feedback suggests NASCAR is poised for more growth in the future.