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Mario Mercurio and Musketeer Madness

By Andrew Bush
On October 26, 2011

At Musketeer Madness, the men's basketball team took the floor sporting some sweet new uniforms brought to you by the great people at Nike. Nike is an elite company that has been breeding success on the basketball court as well as supplying teams and fans with exceptional gear and

equipment for a quarter century. Together, Xavier and Nike

have formed a great bond built on collegiate success and

great marketing. These Nike "HyperElite" threads the team

wore were a special promotion based on the uniforms worn

by the Cincinnati Royals and, in my opinion, they were pretty sick. The basketball players were not the only people

sporting new Nike swag at Muskie Madness; students were given the opportunity to receive free gear as well.

According to Coach Mack's tweet, all 500 seats sold out in 19 minutes. These seats came with a free special Nike t-shirt promoting Musketeer Madness, which was only the first of many great Xavier apparel items to come out

this season. This gear may be slick, but it is nowhere near as slick as the hair of the man responsible for the great relations between XU and Nike. Xavier alum Mario

Mercurio has been the Director of Basketball Administration for eight years. During that time, he has served as the liaison between Xavier and Nike, and he is greatly responsible for the schools Nike NTS contract. Last

year, when Xavier reached the agreement with Nike, it

was one of only a handful of schools not in a major conference to have this elite customization contract. This contract is what led to specialized uniforms and all the new apparel in the bookstore. Additionally, Mercurio is responsible for our excellent non-conference scheduling, holds great rapport with students and most importantly has an interesting twitter feed (@MarioMercurio). Students can rest assured that as long as he is at the helm, awesome

Nike merchandise will continue to be available. This brings us back to Nike and what they have done for our University. Nike does a wonderful job of marketing, promoting its schools and connecting with students—like it did with the "X GONNA GIVE IT TO YA" shirts last year. I personally

am very excited to see the wonderful relationship between Nike and Xavier prosper over the next few years. One losing thought: nine of the last 10 NCAA men's basketball National Champions have come from Nike-sponsored

schools. And so, my message to the basketball team this season: "JUST DO IT." Let's cut down some nets in the Big Easy this March.

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