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unauthorized college jerseys(29 posts)

unauthorized college jerseysel_pato
Mar 3, 2003 8:28 AM
If any of you have seen these on Nashbar, then you know what I'm referring to. World Jerseys is selling a series of college jerseys online at a few different outlets. While these jerseys are made with the approval of each school's athletic/marketing dept, they are in NO WAY affiliated with the respective school's cycling program.

These jerseys are NOT the school's official jersey, and the teams don't get a cent. I was able to get my school to block the license application so that they can't make our jerseys next year, but as of now there are still a ton of unofficial jerseys out there thanks to the ignorance and greed of our licensing department, which allows just about anyone to stick a UO logo on just about anything. I would appreciate it if everyone joined in a boycott of these jerseys and helped spread the word that these jerseys are bogus. Imagine if an ugly copy of your team's jersey ended up for sale on Nashbar without your knowledge and there was nothing you could do about it and you'll see the situation we're in. Think of how fun it would be to see random people you've never met riding around (or worse yet, racing) in your jersey misrepresenting your club. This is a serious issue for the college clubs involved. Thanks for your support and GO DUX!
don't understand the problemDougSloan
Mar 3, 2003 8:35 AM
For a public school, isn't the name sort of in the public domain? In other words, I didn't think a public entity could trademark its name. An official, specific logo could be protected, but not the name or something made up by someone else. Private entities are another matter.

Why the concern, though, particularly if a school won't license the name? I really don't understand how it could be a "serious concern." In races, you are not allowed to wear a jersey of a team you are not on, so that's not a problem.

Mar 3, 2003 8:49 AM
Aren't college cycling "teams" really just clubs, since cycling isn't sanctioned as a sport by the NCAA? That raises doubt in my mind as to how a school could have an "official jersey" for an unofficial sport.

I'm curious about what you would think if I were to buy a blank jersey and paint the word "OREGON" on it in the standard collegiate style. If I use the school colors, am I creating an "unofficial" jersey? Should this be legal?
Mar 3, 2003 9:05 AM
We're not NCAA, which is why most schools' marketing departments let it pass. While these jerseys are technically legal, they are by no means official. College teams are sanctioned by the NCCA, a division of USAC. So it's not like we're just another local club, we are official teams that compete in a sanctioned college season, ride in college-only fields, have college champions, and so forth.

Think of it like this: You ride for Mohair Velo and you make some snazzy jersies for your club members to ride and race in. A month later you're checking out Nashbar and see Mohair Velo jersies for sale. Where did they come from?? The name Mohair Velo isn't copyrighted (or maybe it is but it's controlled by someone who doesn't care about cycling) so anyone can slap it on a jersey. These Mohair jersies have the same color scheme and font as your team's jersey, but they're not your team's jersey. Someone is making money off of YOUR club's name without your club even knowing about it, let alone allowing it. You would let this slide?
Mar 3, 2003 9:31 AM
But it's not like that. Mohair Velo represents something very specific. The words "OREGON" and "DUCKS" and the school colors of green and yellow do not, and therefore are not things you can prevent anyone from using together legally.

Think of it like this: I like San Francisco so much I decide to make T-shirts and sweatshirts that say "San Francisco," which I sell off my website. I don't live in San Francisco, so is it right that people who do live there get upset about what I'm doing? Can Willie Brown (the mayor) try to shut me down? I can even slap a logo of the Golden Gate Bridge on my products and trademark it! I certainly don't own the bridge and it was even built with public money.

It's best not to get too upset about this. Seriously, are there really that many people out there wearing "unauthorized" ducks jerseys?
Mar 3, 2003 10:07 AM
I'd say University of (random school) and the school colors in combination are pretty specific, especially when you put them on something like a cycling jersey The perception is that this is the school's cycling team jersey, which it is not. It's not like a UO t-shirt, if some random guy walks around in a UO shirt no one automatically thinks he's a professor, it's just a shirt. Not so with a cycling jersey, it's a unique item in that the bearer of the jersey is seen on the road as a representative of that team, and when the actual team has no control over who gets to wear that jersey problems arise. Clubs should be able to have control over their image, and the University, after hearing our case, sides with us. San Francisco is not copyrighted. University names and logos are, you need to apply for a license to make anything with a school's name or logo on it. If anything I thought that fellow cyclists would understand the need for a club to present its best face to the community, which is impossible if it doesn't have control over its own jersey.
get mad at your schooldante
Mar 3, 2003 10:26 AM
they're the ones who:
1) own the rights to your colors/logo/mascot
2) sold the rights to your colors/logo/mascot
3) didn't give you any money for the sale of your colors/logo/mascot

Sorry, don't know what your gripe is...
re: unauthorized college jerseysBike Nut
Mar 3, 2003 9:05 AM
If I were affiliated with a college, I would be more concerned with someone who is attempting to represent my school beginning a sentence with: "Think of how fun it would be..." I take it the DUX don't have English as a requirement for graduation.
As for the rest of this little tirade, SO WHAT? I think it might be called advertising. You know, that is when companies and other organizations pay to have their name put before the public. Here, the school is not only getting the advertising, but also is being paid. Perhaps some of this cash is making it back to the team? Or, perhaps, your next new team member came to your school because seeing the jersey on some random people riding around or worse yet (I shudder at the thought) racing while wearing your team jersey piqued his interest and got him to take a look at your school.
re: unauthorized college jerseysel_pato
Mar 3, 2003 9:30 AM
No, none of the royalties make it back to the team, that's the point. We get NO money from the school, everything we do is student funded. And I do shudder at the thought of someone racing in a UO jersey that isn't on the team. If an alumni or someone wants to support the team by buying directly from a college team that's fine, it happens all the time, but in this instance the only connection we have with these jerseys is not real, only implied.

DUX... it's a nickname, like Zags, Wazzu, Dawgs. Nevermind.
re: unauthorized college jerseysirregardless
Mar 3, 2003 12:32 PM
Just because the university allows a racing club doesn't give that club exclusive rights to market cycling jerseys bearing any version of the school's colors or logo. The university is doing nothing wrong by marketing cycling jerseys. In fact, it's filling a legitimate demand. And not everyone assumes that someone wearing a school's colors or logo on a jersey is a member of the school's club. Moreover, I would guess that most people who want to wear their school colors or logo on a jersey want to do so out of an appreciation for their school, not because they want people to assume they are on the school's racing club. Your assumptions are all wrong.
Buy from the team...Brooks
Mar 3, 2003 5:03 PM
As a Cal (Univ of California, Berkeley) grad, I have always looked for a Cal jersey. I haven't seen them at Nashbar or other places. Fortunately, the Cal cycling club (National Champs in both road and 'cross, Go Bears!) does sell clothes and other stuff through their website

Now I may not like having all the sponsors on a jersey, I just want the Blue and Gold colors and script Cal to show my affiliation with the University. The team wasn't started until after I graduated, so I have no ties to the cycling team, though it's nice to know there is a team. But I do cycle and I went to Cal and I'm proud to display that fact. I don't necessarily feel the need to support the cycling team as I support other facets of the University.

Go Bears, beat the DUX.
Worrying about things out of your control is a waste of time.MB1
Mar 3, 2003 9:14 AM
Too late now. Besides lots of folks enjoy having clothing from their school.

Get over it.
I'd be honoredterry b
Mar 3, 2003 9:20 AM
If someone cared enough to spend some money to wear a garment that showed their support for my organization.

Are you honestly getting spun up because someone in Dubuque buys a Ducks jersey and rides around in it? If you are, you should re-examine your priorities.
I'd be honoredel_pato
Mar 3, 2003 9:43 AM
But that's the thing, these jerseys don't support us or any of the other colleges. In some instances they are being sold in direct competition with the actual college teams' jerseys in local markets, which actually HURTS the school's fundraising efforts. If you want a college jersey contact the team directly and they'll usually add you to the next order that goes out. You get the jersey and the club gets some support, everyone is happy.

So you'd be okay with an outside firm creating and selling imitations of YOUR club's jerseys without you even knowing about it?
I'd be honoredterry b
Mar 3, 2003 10:01 AM
First of all, the person in Dubuque probably doesn't have access to your jerseys in a local market. If he wants to show support for your team (perhaps he's an alumni?) he'll buy it where he can buy it. Now, if your school market has a decent web presence where (authentic) jerseys can be purchased, they should publicize it and capture market share.

Secondly, he is supporting your school by wearing free advertising for it and your team. Suppose some hot 17 year old racer in rural Iowa sees that jersey, does a little research and ends up attending Oregon and greatly increasing your ranking. Not to mention out of state tuition. Advertising works that way, and all support does not necessarily have to be monetary.

Lastly, no one is buying a Ducks jersey and wearing it to "claim" they're part of your private fraternity. They're doing it 1) beacuse they like the design and 2) because they feel some affinity for your University, not your team in particular. Your should be flatered. It's the same as me getting upset seeing someone wearing a New Mexico state jersey while riding in Little Rock. I'm a New Mexican, I'm proud to be a New Mexican and where does that hillbilly in Arkansas get off wearing my colors? Give me a break - I'd be flattered that someone liked my "team" enough to spend $59 regardless of where the profit ended up. Heck, maybe someone will see it and visit Santa Fe and spend some money.

Now I do agree that it would be nice if you got a cut of every one sold. However, if your licensing department let's the logo go for free then they're doing it because they understand the value of free advertising, the point I think you're missing.
Sponsors and clubs losing money.Spoiler
Mar 3, 2003 10:54 AM
The UA team is a club, not NCAA, though we compete in NCAA nationals. Club members do the leg work to solicit sponsors. That, and club dues are our only source of financial support. Sponsors get their name on the jersey. The club sells jerseys to the public. If someone wants to show support for the school by buying and wearing a jersey, they are being misled by Velowear or unauthorized peddlers.
I remember having to pay to go to collegebigrider
Mar 3, 2003 10:14 AM
I don't know why you think that the cycling program should reap the direct rewards of the schools name and logo. Colleges and Universities are big business and if they can sell rights to their names and/or logos that is their sole decision. All Miami Hurricane football jersey profits don't go to the football program. The football program is making money for the school not only in selling articles of clothing but also in tickets and drawing more students to the school.
re: unauthorized college jerseysraptorUW
Mar 3, 2003 10:34 AM
First, congrats on doing the work to fix the problem -- albeit at a later date than you wished. As the past VP of a collegiate club, i can appreciate the concern. However, i have to respect the attempt at a successful business venture. As other posters have pointed out, the jerseys fill a niche that seems to have a lot of potential.

After seeing the cookie-cutter designs of these specific jerseys, they don't look anything like actual team-issue product. That should calm your nerves a bit. Also, keep in mind that, based on the way clothing contracts are written, the design your club uses is the club's property. The manufacturer, or anyone else, can not sell that jersey w/o your consent.

If you ever see someone racing in a non-team issue jersey, just point it out to the official. they'll ahve to turn it inside out if you push the issue.

My advice? Just as it's the producers right to market the jerseys, it's your right to let everyone know that these jerseys don't benefit collegiate racing at all.
Moreover, let people know where they can go to find a jersey that does benefit the club. For what it's worth, there are websites that sell team-issue garments... i think is one of them.
why not print some and have the team sell them and profit? nmDougSloan
Mar 3, 2003 10:40 AM
You are wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong...miposy
Mar 3, 2003 11:25 AM
Your school does get a cent, and they deserve it. If you don't want your school to profit from this, ride for a private team.

Considering the funding crisis in your state of Oregon, your school should be scraping for every penny they can get.

Also, as an alumni of a Pac-10 school, screw you if I can't by a jersey of my alma-mater.

Think before you post!
What's this say about your school?Spoiler
Mar 3, 2003 1:30 PM
Didn't they teach you a single person is an alumnus?
By is spelled buy. Alma mater is two separate words.
I'm sure your school is thankful that you didn't name them.
Spelling errors, English majors, and Jacka$$es...miposy
Mar 3, 2003 2:11 PM
This is a message board, I don't sit here and make sure my message is absolutely perfect before I send it, as it is the content that is important.

You could sit here and poach people's grammar all day in multiple posts. Spelling, usage, and punctuation errors don't make posts valid or invalid, content does.

If you have an issue with what I actually said, cool, I respect it. Your issue with my use of the language, however, makes you just an anal-retentive a$$.
Spelling errors, English majors, and Jacka$$es...Spoiler
Mar 3, 2003 4:28 PM
Even if you sat there and TRIED to make sure your messages were absoltuely perfect, it wouldn't do any good. I'm just trying to give you the education that the PAC10 failed to provide. Don't complain, it's FREE!
read carefully pleaseel_pato
Mar 3, 2003 1:51 PM
Yes, the University gets their cut from the royalties and we ride for the University, but they give us ZERO support to do this. We represent them in athletic competition for the love of cycling and nothing else, no scholarships, no use of school vans, race fee money, nothing. You have no idea all of the inane hoops we have to jump through just to drive to races.

All the money we get comes from student fees (not revenues from licensing) and (mostly) our own sponsorships and fundraisers. While we are not selling our jerseys this year, we did last year and probably will next year. Most other schools sell theirs to alumni or the general public as well. While the school's respective club is trying to raise money to race by selling its jersies, the schools are licensing a similar product in competition that its own club already sells!! Do you not see the problem here?? A possible conflict of interest? These college clubs are being undermined by their own schools and by certain companies that would rather take money from this sport than by supporting it by working WITH the individual college clubs involved.

And the funny thing about your message, is that you CAN buy jersey from your alma matter. Just email their coordinator and ask to be put on the next jersey order, pay a little extra, and support the school's cycling club, not some faceless company. I can get you the appropriate contact info if you'd like.

Try to see the other side here. People assume that these college clubs are fully funded programs and that's rarely the case. We hustle for dollars every chance we get and it can be a big hit to a club's fundraising and morale to find a competitor selling an alternate form of its jersey in a local shop or on the net because someone in their school's licensing department wanted a few extra dollars. We have to pay royalties anyway on jerseys we sell anyway, so it's not like they're losing out on that end.

And I have yet to hear from anyone who would be fine with the idea of a random company creating an imitation of their club's jersey and selling without their knowledge. Just because we happen to be a college team doesn't make it right.
Well that's funnyterry b
Mar 3, 2003 2:02 PM
Just pulled this off of your very own cycling club web site:

"UO Cycling clothing is only available to current club members."

Okay - so I have a romantic allegience to Oregon (used to live there) and I want a Ducks jersey to show off for all my pals down here in the desert while expressing my support for your endeavour. What am I to do? Your exclusionist little group says I am not entitled to pretend I'm a 49 year old team member riding 1100 miles off campus.
Mar 3, 2003 2:55 PM
We'll most likely open up next year's jersey order. We didn't this year because the year prior we had problems with our jersey company and some team members ended up without jerseys because alumni bought them up first. It was a mess, we switched companies & coordinators, and now that we have a system in place that works we'll probably sell next years' version. It's not my call though, I'm gone in 3 months. Check this summer for more info. If you'd like we'll have t-shirts printed up within a month for sale.

And why does everyone take that "you guys are being so elitist" tone whenever the issue of selling team jerseys to non members come up? If we're not selling them this year its not personal, we're just not selling them this year. Thanks for the support though, we really do appreciate it.
waitterry b
Mar 3, 2003 3:07 PM
Well I was ribbing you on the elitist angle but you should appreciate when someone (namely a potential customer/supporter) goes looking for a jersey and reads "available to team members only" they're going to go looking somewhere else. Your explanation is great, but unfortunately the terse message on the team website doesn't say that. It could easily be interpreted as "we don't want you wearing our colors." My recommendation would be to post a message saying "sold out this year, visit our college bookstore web site for future offerings." You won't lose any friends that way.
duly notedel_pato
Mar 3, 2003 3:21 PM
I'll change that next time I update the site. Thanks.
Late additionWalter
Mar 3, 2003 7:08 PM
Thread is probably already dead but...

Checked out Nashbar and I think you're a bit off here. Here's my perspective: I own a U of Florida Team Jersey. Don't/didn't race for them, just an alum, but did buy from the club and didn't mind paying a premium price as I was participating in a fund raiser. The Gator Jersey on Nashbar bears no resemblance to the club jersey. I like the design of the club jersey better as a point of fact but I don't see the problem of an alum riding around in that Nashbar jersey. It doesn't say "Team Florida" on it after all.