This came in from Chico:
Last Tuesday, the FBI arrested 10 people associated with bribery allegations. The alleged bribery was tied to funds that supposedly were given by an Adidas manager to college recruiters. The recruiters allegedly were paid to bring players to Adidas schools, in the hopes that the players would sign Adidas shoe contracts in the future. All four of the schools connected with the indictment were schools that have Adidas sponsorships and wear Adidas gear.
The arrests occurred six days after Adidas, was recorded as having topped Under Armour, Nike and Nike’s Jordan brand in market share in shoe sales. This is the first time that the German shoemaker was tops in the U.S. footwear market.
These types of player incentives have likely been occurring in college sports for decades. It’s very interesting that Adidas tactics were challenged at the same time that the company was starting to lead the U.S. market. I assert that both the Nike and Adidas boardrooms were very aware of the timing.
Sadly, this coincidence has not been raised in the U.S. media. One has to wonder why the FBI did not arrest anyone in these types of schemes before last week. If the allegations are true (and the courts should decide these matters not the media), the law was broken and consequences should be applied.. However, as citizens, we should be aware that the factors which cause our federal agencies to act may be more complicated than reported.
You’re just wrong. The media, including Fox, has reported about Adidas sales performance relative to Nike and Under Armour and specifically about it recently passing sales of Nike’s Jordan shoes.
What’s sad is when one company allegedly does something wrong and you immediately without evidence blame its competitors for the alleged wrongdoer getting busted, especially when you have no proof that they instigated the investigation. You’re actually blaming Nike and Under Armour for your distrust in the FBI and prosecutors. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that college sports and college recruiting are infested with corruption.
This investigation started over two years ago. The big break in the case happened last year when a financial advisor, who was involved in the alleged college corruption, was charged by the SEC in a totally separate fraud-related matter. In an effort to save his own skin, he spilled the beans about the alleged corruption in college basketball, implicating Adidas, the coaches, financial advisors, and the families of players.
This case isn’t just about Adidas. You can bet that Nike and Under Armour are quaking in their shoes because they don’t want their involvement in college programs and college recruiting to be subjected to scrutiny. This investigation will hurt the entire industry, not just Adidas. Adidas and the universities implicated thus far are just the tip of the iceberg.