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North Carolina, other schools ante up for college sports sponsorships

North Carolina’s Nike sponsorship deal has grown by 20x since 1993.

Key Highlights:

The UNC-Nike deal has grown by 20x in total value since 1993

North Carolina’s Nike sponsorship deal has doubled in value on a per-year basis

Nike sponsors 60 NCAA schools including 60% of Power Five schools

Nike has 3 of the top 5 most expensive sponsorship deals in college sports

It was the Tar Heels’ first national title since Michael Jordan left for the NBA, which allowed UNC to sign a lucrative school-wide sponsorship deal for $4.7 million. Today, that deal is more than $95 million and it has more than doubled in value on a year-by-year basis.

In 2018, North Carolina inked a 10-year school-wide sponsorship deal worth $95 million. At $9.5 million per year, the contract is one of the most expensive NCAA sponsorship deals in college sports.

In fact, it is Nike’s second-most lucrative sponsorship deal, just behind the Texas Longhorns ($9.76 million per year) and the fourth-largest among all NCAA schools.

Could UCLA Be Setting Itself Up For A Record Payout In 2026?

UCLA set the record for the biggest sponsorship deal ever after signing with the apparel brand Under Amor in 2020. However, Under Armor decided to terminate the deal just one year later and paid the Bruins $67.5 million to terminate the deal.

The Bruins quickly signed with Nike thereafter in a deal worth $47.5 million over six years.

More to come...


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