Why Adidas Won on John Ross

Dan Vo By on March 4, 2017

In 2012 Nike became the official uniform provider of the NFL — ever notice how the Northwest team (Seattle) got much cooler uniforms than anyone else? Since then, other sneaker companies have been figuring out how to compete with the juggernaut.

Last year Adidas put out an offer — $1,000,000 to any player that can beat 4.24 on the 40 meter dash, set by all-pro Chris Johnson. A million doesn’t stack up to much when compared to the contracts some of these top prospects will be earning. Still, it caused quite a stir on the internet.

This year Adidas doubled down on their offer and proposed an island for the same bet. An actual island. What a fantastic marketing ploy. A place to retire before you even begin to be a professional. They also put a clause that they can opt to just pay the million, though, but that wasn’t picked up in the headlines.

Washington University wide receiver prospect John Ross actually broke that record today by .02. The Internet went crazy. His video went viral. The 22-year-old was set. Unfortunately for him however, there was another clause stating that he had to do so while wearing Adidas. Content, of course.

So while Adidas may not be looping endless videos of him running, set to the tune of ‘Run, John Ross, Run!’ in commercials soon, there were more than a couple of people who remembered and cited the wager. Their prop bets have become first in mind, and a small way to stick it to Nike on one of their big days.