By now, you know that Alabama football is one of the best-loved sports programs in America.
You also know that it’s been a little slow in bringing in new fans, and in particular, the fanbase of fans who have stayed loyal to the program through years of neglect.
But that doesn’t mean the Crimson Tide isn’t trying to change that.
In fact, the program has done so, with a lot of help from Alabama-based brand specialist and digital influencer Nick Paine, who is a former football player himself.
Now that the Tide is back on the gridiron, Paine has put his talents to use to help build a brand that could win over new fans.
The former football star spent several years as an NFL Network analyst and was one of two co-hosts of the first episode of the network’s “SportsCenter” series.
In his new role as a brand strategist, Pardon has brought together the likes of NFL stars including Aaron Rodgers, Aaron Rodgers’ daughter, Jordyn and the current quarterback, Josh McCown.
He also has some other talent in mind, including the former Alabama linebacker Chris Black, the former NFL star and the former New York Giants offensive lineman.
“It’s been an amazing experience,” Paine said, referring to his time at the helm of NFL Network.
“I’ve been fortunate enough to be part of something that has been a true game changer for the sports world, and I can’t wait to help Alabama continue to achieve greatness in the future.”
For Paine and his team, it’s not just a matter of making money.
“We want to build a program that is truly sustainable, that is a great example for other programs around the world,” Pardon said.
“We are very proud to have the endorsement of the likes [of] Nike, as well as the NFL.
I’ve had some amazing experiences in my career and I’m very grateful for what I’ve been able to do.”
Paine’s team is working hard on its brand to build on the success of the recent recruiting class, which included the likes: a trio of top-five recruits in wide receiver and cornerback, as ranked by ESPN’s Steve Venezia; wide receiver commit Jake Butt and defensive end Joey Bosa; offensive tackle Jordan Howard and defensive tackle Terrance Knighton.
And the brand team is also working to build relationships with local sports personalities, which Paine hopes will give them a boost.
Paine is also focusing on helping Alabama’s student-athletes, who have been known to take part in some of the biggest moments in the program’s history.
In the past few months, Ponder has made a name for himself at Alabama, where he has developed into one of college football’s most feared quarterbacks.
The former quarterback and current offensive lineman is an alumnus of the school and the first-ever player to earn all-conference honors in the same season at Alabama.
He’s also been known for his passion for the game, having previously won the Heisman Trophy, a title that he earned last season.
As a result, Pause and his group are already looking to recruit some of these former Tide players to the brand.
After signing former wide receiver Corey Davis and cornerback Dontae Johnson, the brand will also be looking to build ties with the players on the offensive line.
And Paine is even looking to add some of his own talent to the roster, with the hope of bringing in some former Tide stars to the team.
While the Alabama football program has made some big moves in recent years, the current coach has made it clear that there’s a lot more to come.
“I think we’ve definitely been able and excited about the football team,” Pause said.
For now, though, he’s happy to be able to help the Tide build on that success.