Yesterday it was reported that the University of Louisville is selling official shirts that read “Rise to the the Occasion” and bears the number of injured Cardinal Kevin Ware. The shirts sparked controversy because it appeared that the university would profit from Ware’s likeness…which, might I add is against NCAA rules.
As reported by USA Today Sports, today the university announced that the school will not profit from the sale of the shirts.
The school “proactively decided to waive any traditional licensing royalties revenue connected to the No. 5 graphic to be worn by the team on the court,”
“The shirt was created as a respectful tribute to honor Kevin within NCAA trademark apparel parameters, and allow fans to rally around the team. Because of that, Adidas is contributing a portion of every sell to the university’s scholarship fund,”
Adidas has also issued a statement:
We are happy to support Louisville fans who wish to honor a player and rally around the team during the most important moments of their season. The shirt was intended as a respectful tribute and because of that, a portion of every sale will go to the university’s scholarship fund.”
So basically what this all means is that Adidas will profit directly, Louisville will profit indirectly, and Ware won’t profit at all. Welcome to the wonderful world of college sports, where everyone profits off of student athletes’ free labor, or in this case injury.