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Times reporter Bob Condotta keeps the news coming about the Montlake Dawgs.

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July 14, 2008 12:38 PM

New equipment deal coming?

Posted by Bob Condotta

Rumors are making the rounds that the Huskies are thinking of ditching Nike as their equipment supplier and going with another company, either Under Armour or adidas. One rumor has it that UW has already set its sights on Under Armour and that Nike is phasing out its selling of Husky merchandise.

Officially, however, nothing has yet happened and won't for a little while.

To clarify the situation, UW has had a contract with Nike since 1997, renewing it in 2001 and 2004. Under the current deal, UW gets roughly $1.1 million in product and about $210,000 in cash every year from Nike (that doesn't cover the entire budget for such items, and some UW teams also have separate deals with other companies to cover some specific apparel/equipment they need).

The deal between UW and Nike runs out July 1, 2009 and UW has already begun sending out "requests for proposals'' for companies to submit bids. The department will decide later this year which one to accept.

Some UW fans think the Huskies should align with someone other than Nike, which is headed by well-known Oregon Duck booster and alum Phil Knight.

Scott Woodward, UW's acting athletic director, said last week that would have "very little factor, if any'' in Washington's decision. "Whichever one provides the best value to the student-athlete will be the winner,'' Woodward said.

It's likely that any significant changes to logos and other such items won't happen until after the Huskies have signed a new contract.

Nike has already lost one major school this year when Michigan recently announced it had signed a new deal with Adidas. Michigan unveiled new gameday jerseys today that are a product of that new association.

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