As Auburn University and Florida State University prepare for the 2014 Vizio BCS National Championship Game on Monday, BCS officials, in conjunction with the Collegiate Licensing Company (CLC), are taking necessary measures to clear the Pasadena market of potential counterfeit and unlicensed merchandise.
CLC, the licensing affiliate of IMG College and the exclusive licensing partner for the BCS, the Rose Bowl, Auburn, and Florida State, will work closely with local law enforcement officials to control the merchandise being sold surrounding the national championship game. All counterfeit merchandise is subject to seizure.
"Licensed merchandise is an important way for fans to connect with their teams while helping our partner institutions fund campus programs and scholarships through the royalties generated from product sales," said CLC SVP and Managing Director Cory Moss. "It's important that we work with our partners to protect their valuable brands and the storied traditions those brands represent."
With the retail market for collegiate licensed product estimated at $4.62 billion, counterfeiters look to capitalize on the excitement of fans in town to cheer on their teams. On average, over 2,200 pieces of counterfeit collegiate merchandise are seized outside the host stadium of the BCS title game each year.
"We work with our partners at CLC to protect the fans, retailers, and participating institutions from falling prey to counterfeiters, which often sell inferior product," said Reid Sigmon, Chief Financial Officer, BCS/College Football Playoff. "We want to make sure that all BCS product being sold is licensed and of the quality that the fans demand of merchandise that will forever remind them of the great time they had cheering on their team in Pasadena."
Michael Drucker, vice president and associate general counsel of CLC, inspects merchandise in local stores with Pasadena police officers providing enforcement services.
Tips for consumers purchasing Auburn, Florida State and BCS National Championship Game merchandise…
- All officially licensed merchandise should display the "Officially Licensed Collegiate Products" hologram on the product or hangtag.
- The merchandise should depict BCS, Auburn, and Florida State logos and marks in a tasteful manner, as the BCS or Auburn and Florida State do not approve distasteful designs.
- The tag on the garment should be intact. A torn or missing tag is evidence of a second-hand garment, one that probably would not meet the stringent quality standards put in place by the BCS, Auburn, and Florida State.
- All merchandise should bear the name of the manufacturer somewhere on the product, either in the form of a hangtag, a neck label, or screen-printed directly on the garment.
- All merchandise should have the appropriate trademark designations (i.e. ™, ®) next to a specific name or design.
Trademark infringement violates state and federal laws, including criminal laws. Penalties vary depending on the extent of the violation, but can include confiscation of the product and equipment used to make it, fines, and even jail time for more serious violations. Confiscated product is eventually destroyed or donated to charitable organizations.
Last Updated: Jan. 6, 2014