The University of Cincinnati (UC) athletics department announced on Thursday their decision to partner with author and brand marketing consultant Jeremy Darlow, in an effort for the university’s student-athletes to foster their personal brands.
“We are excited about this partnership and The DARLOW Rules program,” said UC athletic director John Cunningham in a press release. “One of the key pieces of our mission statement is to prepare our student-athletes to go out and change the world and Jeremy’s program takes that to the next level.”
“It’s our job, as experts and educators, to teach Bearcats student-athletes how to use those resources to their advantage,” Cunningham continued. “Our work together is about teaching these young men and women how to build a plan that puts them on a path to their dream jobs. This partnership goes well beyond sports.”
The “DARLOW Rules” program aims to teach athletes across various sports the principles of communication and brand development, taught through video-based lessons.
Upon completing the course, each student-athlete will have built a marketing plan of their own based on the lessons they learn from Darlow’s program. Every student that graduates the course will receive a certificate of completion to add to their resumes.
Darlow is a credited best-selling author with novels, including “Brands Win Championships” and “Athletes Are Brands Too.” Before becoming a marketing phenomenon, he worked for years in corporate America.
Starting with internships in sports marketing, Darlow he began working for Mervyn’s LLC department store. From there, he worked as an associate brand manager under global video-game company Ubisoft for two years and played a big part in the expansion of Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six series.
After a short stint with Widmer Brothers Brewing Company, Darlow joined onto the Adidas team in 2008, spending more than eight years there while rising to director of brand marketing for football and baseball.
Throughout his career, Darlow has worked with some of the world’s biggest athletes, including super bowl champion Aaron Rodgers, all-star third baseman Kris Bryant and global soccer superstar Lionel Messi in Barcelona, Spain.
“Today, more than any other point in history, athletes have the opportunity to build personal brands that transcend the sports they play,” Darlow said. “Thanks to the exposure and influence offered by social media, these young men and women can now control their own brand destiny.”
His list of associates and partners goes beyond the sports world, with musical talents like Snoop Dogg and Kanye West also under some of Darlow’s guidance.
In the collegiate sports world, Darlow has been credited with helping Notre Dame, the University of Michigan and the University of California Los Angeles expand their brands to higher levels of recognition.
“Too often athletes are defined entirely by their athletic careers without developing influence in other areas of passion,” Darlow said. “My goal is to change that.”