Behind the blackout

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The Cougar Nation found out about the homecoming blackout against Oregon State, but BYU Athletic Marketing has been building up to the black for some time.

Assistant Athletic Director over Marketing, David Almodova, says the idea for the blackout originated with the football players and after a few years, marketing decided to get on board.

“With Nike, the way it works is you have to order everything about a year in advance. Last summer Coach Mendenhall and our equipment manager met about it and they met with Nike about it and felt like this year would be a good time to do it for a game, “ Almodova says.

Two weeks ago, marketing began releasing information on the black out on social media sites and in the press. However, they announced their plans to one of their most important marketing tools, the BYU Bookstore, last spring.

The BYU Bookstore began designing a special t-shirt for the blackout game.

“We stayed with the most popular logo,” says BYU Bookstore General Sales Manager David Smith, “an oval with a Y. This time, we inverted the logo, like on the black out uniforms, so that the Y is royal blue in a white oval on a black tee.”

The bookstore anticipated a successful run for the t-shirts, ordering $95,000 retail worth of black out apparel, instead of the usual $4,000 – $5,000 worth of apparel. Of that apparel, 75% has been sold, causing the bookstore to rush order more, due to arrive Friday morning.

The first five thousand fans to arrive at the stadium on Saturday will be given a free black t-shirt, courtesy of BYU Athletic Marketing. The student section will also be given black rally towels. Even the field is getting a black out makeover, but the most important part of the black out is fan participation.

“If you have a black shirt, black t-shirt, whatever you can find in your closet, wear it. And if you can’t find anything, put on a black garbage bag. Those are black!” Almodova says.

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