DB Says MSU Road Unis "Not a Marketing and Merchandising Strategy"

Submitted by Corey on October 21st, 2011 at 9:59 AM



"It's not a marketing and merchandise strategy," Brandon said. "It was to fire up the team as far as our own competitive edge. I'm glad we did it. It worked out well, but like everything else, some people love it, some don't love it."



Blue boy johnson

October 21st, 2011 at 10:07 AM ^

I loved them too. Now if we can just get some stripes on the pants. Or perhaps some wording on the pantaloons, maybe one leg spells out MAN in maize and the other let spells out BALL in blue. That would be fresh


October 21st, 2011 at 10:17 AM ^

Did you read the article you posted? He said it was to fire up the players and it worked:

"They were going nuts," Brandon said of the players. "They were excited and thought the jerseys were very cool. They were well aware that State had unique uniforms on, and I think they were happy they had their own special thing."

And if anyone thinks Brandon is lying, Doug Karsch on the radio broadcast confirmed how excited the players were about the uniforms.


October 21st, 2011 at 3:56 PM ^

Your comparison would be more apt if the original winged helmets were replaced the next week by a different uniform.  A one-time change is (to me) unnecessary, but marketing and so be it.  Changing the uniform three times in three weeks in unacceptable.

The uniforms last weekend did look stupid (as do the crooked flat-brimmed baseball caps fashionable for kids for about 3 more months).  See, you don't change on a weekly basis based on the whims of kids. The kids are a part of the team's history.  They are not the entirety of it.  Schools without tradition (Oregon, Maryland, etc.) need to toss out these gimmicks to attract attention.  Michigan does not.


October 21st, 2011 at 3:51 PM ^

Tradition is not formed on a week-by-week basis.  We don't change The Victors (oh wait, maybe we do this year).  We don't change the helmets (except for this year).  We don't change the team name (umm...ok...I think we're safe).  We don't change our colors.  We don't write "Victors" and "Valiant" on the uniforms (no longer safe...the lesson the Halo not learned).

The kids come to Michigan to play for the team that is rich with history and tradition.  They don't come to the squad and determine what uniforms we wear (any more than they tell the coaches what formation to run).  Their input is a piece of the overall equation.  There are many who came before them and many who will come after.  Weekly uniform changes are an affront to our tradition.


October 31st, 2011 at 6:22 PM ^

You totally missed my point.  Which individuals do you think built the tradition?  Who are these "many" who came before the current players?  If you answered a bunch of 18-23 year-old kids (be it in 1905, 1940, 1969, or 2011) then you are correct.  50 years from now it will be the 18-23 year-old Denards, Fitzgeralds, et. al. that built/maintained the UofM Tradition that the 18-23 year-old Harmons, Desmonds, Hennes et. al. built before them.  This gravy train we and thousands of other alumni ride each Saturday is operated by 18-23 YEAR-OLD KIDS.  How is that a hard concept to grasp?  Further, If we want that gravy train to keep on rolling so we can enjoy celebrating our alma mater on fall weekends then our program needs to appeal to 21st century 16-18 year old kids who actually enjoy a little flash from time to time.  Christ, Oregon has built a juggernaut program off of that concept on steroids.  If a little bitching from crochety alumni is the trade off for a few 5 star recruits that enjoy the "creativity" I'm not going to get bent out of shape.


October 21st, 2011 at 10:35 AM ^

I did read it, and yes the players were amped up, but you're out of your mind if you honestly believe he did it just for the players. The jerseys certainly didn't give the team the energy to overcome the struggles up front.

For the record, I think one of the dumber things you can do is distract a team by introducing an unfamiliar jersey to them just before a game.  It takes your mind off the job at hand, and in-game provides different visual cues than the ones you're accustomed to.

Section 1

October 21st, 2011 at 10:52 AM ^

Everybody who was at the game knows it.  Doug Karsch was right; Brandon was right.  The team came out amped like no other time this year.

There is one bit of proof I'll await.  Is Michigan going to sell any of those away-version stripe-jobs?

If we aren't "merchandising or marketing" them, then it is a bit hard to argue with Brandon's statement.  So I've not seen them for sale.  Has anybody?  I'm just not aware...

But it is also probably cute on Brandon's part.  Does anybody suppose, that if we had won last Saturday's game in the last minute on a 65-yard run by Denard, that there wouldn't have been an order placed for 500,000 units of those jerseys?


October 21st, 2011 at 11:02 AM ^

According to what DB said in the article they were only planning to sell these if there was enough public demand for them.  It sounds like some people must have enjoyed these jerseys.  I'm all for giving these kids a little something to fire them up a little more in a rivalry game.  

Section 1

October 21st, 2011 at 11:06 AM ^

Sorry, Mr. Brandon; you'll need a better answer to the merchandising and marketing question.

Anybody know how long that has been up?

Odds on when we will see those $80 jerseys going for $12.95 on a sale rack at Dunham's?


October 21st, 2011 at 6:19 PM ^

Just because the team was pumped up after seeing the new uniforms doesn't mean that's why they were excited. ND wasn't a big deal - the team beat them twice under RR - but this game was a critical rivalry game. Seniors were worried they would never beat MSU. They even had a clock!


October 21st, 2011 at 12:01 PM ^

I think it's safe to say that "firing up" players right before a game doesn NOT translate to getting them to play their best football. Look at the first half of the Notre Dame game. The players were more fired up than ever via the first night game, the throwback unis, the record setting crowd, and they came out and played very poorly. They made dumb mistakes offensively, and just looked shaken. Once they settled down they started putting things together and playing their game. When you amp up 19 year olds too much they make a lot of  mistakes. Sometimes it's better to keep them calm and collected right before a big game. So to say this "amping them up" strategy worked would mean that the team came out with fire and intensity and was able to translate that energy into success on the field... Which obviously didn't happen... FAIL.

Mr. Robot

October 21st, 2011 at 10:13 AM ^

So what time does Ann Arbor Torch and Pitchfork open?

I was at the game and I know I was pissed when I saw us come out in those... things. Clearly, Dave Brandon doesn't get it.


October 21st, 2011 at 10:13 AM ^

Behind schools like Oregon wearing different unis each week is because they have no tradition so they unabashedly market themselves that way. Never realized that was actually the key to their onfield success over the last couple of years. Maybe DB is onto something afterall.


October 21st, 2011 at 10:16 AM ^

So he's either shading the truth (which, without getting all OWS, isn't so out of character for a CEO) or he can't tell the difference between creating a new product and maximizing the timing of its launch.  The latter I can see being used as a bit of a pump-up for the team.  The former is all about the $$$.

It wouldn't be as insulting, I guess, if he'd at least acknowledge that his "base" are alumni of a leading university and, as such, should possibly be given a bit more benefit for being able to see through such typical malarkey.