A relationship with the NCAA can be quite lucrative, but apparently the people at Kingsford Charcoal decided that taking a swipe at the governing body for collegiate sports was worth more. I’m sure the prospect of free publicity didn’t hurt either.
Today, Kingsford unveiled a new charcoal bag with the hashtag #PayEd, an image of former UCLA forward Ed O’Bannon, and the tagline “Lights 25 percent faster. Doesn’t burn athletes.” on the package.
Here’s a first: An endorsement targeting the NCAA. Kingsford is selling charcoal bags featuring Ed O’Bannon’s image. pic.twitter.com/OtyFjbel1u
— Jeff Eisenberg (@JeffEisenberg) February 27, 2015
Here’s a statement from Kingsford:
“Kingsford Charcoal has become one of the many companies to use the likeness of a former amateur basketball player for marketing purposes during that mad, mad month of March. Kingsford is just adding a surprising twist: the charcoal brand is actually going to pay that player — Ed O’Bannon — for placing him on the front of a limited bag of charcoal.”
O’Bannon, as you may recall, spearheaded and settled a lawsuit with EA Sports last summer and won a key court battle against the NCAA for the practice of using a college athlete’s likeness without compensating them.
Kingsford will be compensating O’Bannon, at least partially, by paying him $1 per tweet with the hashtag #PayEd (up to $25,000).
If only Dan Patrick got this kind of love when his doppelganger graced the Kingsford bag.
(Source: Yahoo Sports)