Nike, Woods dubbed two of the top brands in the world
Forbes magazine says Rory McIlroy might be the new incoming poster boy at Nike but there's still some strong financial life left in the incumbent, Tiger Woods
Published on Monday, Nov. 12, 2012 11:55AM EST
While the much rumored Rory McIlroy-to-Nike deal for $250-million has yet to be confirmed (apparently McIlroy has already filmed his first commercial for the swoosh) don’t expect to see Tiger Woods shuffled off into the corner anytime soon.
Just as some business observers opined that the arrival of McIlroy means the end of the Woods era at Nike, Forbes has come out with its list of the most valuable brands in sports. Topping the athletes list is none other than Woods. Forbes estimates his brand to be worth $38-million.
“Income has declined over the past two years as sponsors like TAG Heuer and Gillette failed to renew their endorsement deals, and his golf course design business has done poorly,” says Forbes. “But Woods' Nike deal, which provides him with a share of related revenue, enabled him to earn $55 million more in endorsement income than the top ten golfers averaged over the past 12 months.”
Phil Mickelson is the only other golfer in the top 10 with a value of $26-million which leaves him tied for third with the NBA’s Lebron James and David Beckham.
The good news for Nike, Forbes lists the Oregon-based apparel maker as the No. 1 business brand, valued at $15.9-billion. Adding McIlroy to their stable will only serve to increase that number in years to come.
MONEY MATTERS: While Charlie Beljan not only survived the final PGA event of the season, he won’t have to worry about qualifying schools or money lists for at least the next two years. Whether or not that does anything for the panic attacks that nearly knocked him out of this weekend’s tournament is another story.
Beljan was one of two players who actually played their way into the top 125 at Disney (he started the week 139th on the list). Tim Herron was another one who just made it in, finishing in a tie for 9th to move from 136th to 124th on the money list.
Kevin Chappell made par on the final hole of the day Sunday to finish at No. 125 - the cut off for retaining Tour status. His $23,735 cheque was $1,809 more than Jerry Kelly, who finished ninth but just missed climbing into the top 125. He now has a decision to make, go back to q-school and try to earn his way back onto the Tour or use up his one-time career money exemption to get back on Tour in 2013.
Billy Mayfair started the weekend at No. 125 but a bogey to close out the second round on Friday saw him miss the cut and he eventually fell to No. 128 on the money list when the dust settled on Sunday. Rod Pampling was the other player who played his way out of the top 125 after also missing the cut on Friday. He started the weekend at No. 124.
Another player on the outside looking in was Camilo Villegas. Four years ago, the Colombian posted a pair of top-10 results at the U.S. Open and PGA Championship and closed out 2008 with back-to-back wins at the BMW Championship and Tour Championship. That year, he rung up $4.4-million in earnings. Fast forward to 2012, and Villegas is off to the final stage of Q-School to try and retain his Tour card after making just under $500,000 to finish 144th on the money list. The good news, by finishing in the top 150 he secured status on the Web.com Tour next year.
Mike Weir was the only Canadian in the field and he failed to make the cut for the 14th time this season. He finished the year without earning a single dollar. However, unlike this past year when he played without status and relied on sponsor exemptions to get into events, Weir says he plans to use one of his two career money exemptions in 2013 so that he have a more consistent schedule and continue the work he’s done to try and rebuild his game.
Stephen Ames finished 187th on the money list this year but he will still have some status to draw on for next season while Graham DeLaet and David Hearn finished inside the top 100 of the money list to retain their full status for next year. Add Brad Fritsch into the mix and Canada will have at least five golfers playing regularly on the PGA Tour next year. That number could grow depending on the results of Q-School later this month.
TALE OF TWO GOLFERS: Two years ago, Morgan Hoffmann and Peter Uihlein were playing on the powerhouse Oklahoma State men’s golf team. This year, both were busy getting their professional careers off the ground. Uihlein, the former number one ranked amateur in the world, opted to hone his skills on the European Challenge Tour after signing with Chubby Chandler’s management group. Hoffmann had no status on any pro tour and began grinding his way into Web.com events this past summer. A couple of weeks ago both found themselves in similar situations at the end of their respective golf seasons. Hoffmann was on the bubble when it came to the Top 25 on the Web.com money list, six spots off the final cut off for gaining his PGA Tour card while Uihlein was 26th on the Challenge Tour money list, six spots out of the final cut off for exemption onto the European Tour. Hoffmann finished tied for third at the Web.com Tour championship to move up into 19th place and secure his PGA Tour card while Uihlein’s tie for 12th at the Tour finale in Italy left him right where he started, 26th on the money list and on the outside looking in. His best hope now is to earn a European Tour promotion via Q-School.
ON THE ROAD BACK: The Chronicle Herald of Nova Scotia had this story last week on Eric Banks, who was selected as one of only two returning male golfers to Golf Canada's national amateur squad. Banks, a sophomore at the University of Florida, hasn’t played in a competitive tournament since undergoing open heart surgery in Halifax on June 25. A heart defect was detected during a physical at the university a year ago. Banks was back home in Nova Scotia last week undergoing more tests.
CLOSED SHOP: The outgoing chairman of the British Olympic Association says it’s time for the Royal and Ancient Golf Club to get with the times. Lord Moynihan tells BBC Radio 5 live that its time for the club to finally admit women into its membership.
"It is remarkable that Augusta has changed, but the Royal and Ancient is still there having not entitled and allowed complete equality of opportunity for women in this country,” said Moynihan, referring to Augusta National’s admission earlier this year of its first two women members.
"It should be an embedded characteristic of 21st century sport, especially when you see the contribution the athletes make.
"Let's get real and let's get on with the job of providing equality of opportunity across sports, sports administration as well as sporting opportunity."
While the R&A have not responded to Moynihan’s comments, the club has stated in the past that “the rules of the Royal and Ancient golf club at St Andrews specify a male membership and this policy remains a matter for our members determine."
In a similar vein, Britain's Sports Minister, Hugh Robertson, wants to see the Open Championship staged at clubs that allow both male and female members.
"It is increasingly anachronistic not to allow women to be members," Robertson told the Sunday Times.
"The defence of the Royal and Ancient is that it is a private club and so has the right to do what it wants.
"That is legally correct and I have no quarrel when it is acting as a private club. However, I believe that when a private club fulfils a public function, such as staging a major event, then there is a different slant."
The 2013 British Open is set to be staged at Muirfield, which has so far refused to admit female members. Alastair Brown is the secretary of the Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers at Muirfield and he told Britain's Press Association: "It's not our decision where the Open is. It's the decision of the R&A - it's their competition and they ask us.
"Augusta is a totally different situation. They own their event."
“I don’t know what other perks come with winning, but I know every single one of them is pretty darn good.” -- Charlie Beljan, who suffered from a panic attack but went on to win the final PGA event of the season to retain his Tour status.