WKU and Russell Athletic Agree to Four-Year Extension

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. -- WKU Athletics and Russell Athletic have agreed to a four-year, $1.735 million extension of their sponsorship agreement, Director of Athletics Ross Bjork announced today. The agreement takes effect on July 1, 2012, following the expiration of the previous five-year sponsorship arrangement, and runs through June 30, 2016.

“We are very pleased to continue our outstanding partnership with Russell Athletic,” Bjork said. “Their long standing commitment to service and quality ensures that each of our 19 athletic teams and close to 400 student-athletes are outfitted in a first-class manner. It is great to have Russell Athletic headquartered right here in Bowling Green and each of our brands have earned national respect as we both strive for excellence each day. We look forward to the next chapter of success for WKU Athletics with Russell Athletic by our side.”

Russell Athletic continues its designation as “The Official Team Uniform and Apparel Outfitter of Western Kentucky University Athletics” and all 19 WKU athletic teams will wear Russell Athletic designed apparel. WKU can earn additional incentives by reaching on field success benchmarks.

"We are extremely excited to announce the extension of our original contract between WKU and Fruit of the Loom and Russell Athletic," said Fruit of the Loom CEO Rick Medlin. "When we signed the original agreement in 2007, WKU was in its transition to FBS football, and Russell Athletic was in the process of moving to Bowling Green. With both of those now complete it seemed like a good time to extend this relationship that has meant so much to not only our company and WKU, but the city of Bowling Green as well."

Russell also receives category exclusivity for licensed apparel at all University bookstores and Stadium/Arena concessions. The agreement also includes stadium and arena signage, public address announcements and in-game video board recognition, and commercials during WKU radio and television broadcasts.

"We are incredibly lucky to have such an excellent institution in our backyard," said Executive Vice President of Russell Athletic, Gary Barfield. "We are proud to be part of the strong Hilltopper athletic tradition. This partnership allows us to test our latest technologies on apparel and products with WKU staff and student-athletes, creating the best on-field product. We look forward to being part of the WKU's continued success."

Russell Athletic, whose official name is Russell Brands, LLC, is a Fruit of the Loom company with corporate offices located in Bowling Green. The company has been in existence for more than 100 years and is the leading supplier of team uniforms at the high school, college and professional level.