These were all words I had both heard and used countless times while competing for an internship with Under Armour. Over the years I had followed the company's impressive growth, witnessed the "in-your-face" advertising, and was shocked alongside the rest of the country by their fearless uniform designs. Yet despite all of this, nothing could prepare me for what I would experience first-hand when I arrived in the city of Baltimore.
"This isn't like all those other internships. You won't be getting anyone coffee here." This line has practically become a cliché in the world of internships, and every college student looking for work in the summertime has heard it before. Little did I know that when it came to Under Armour, this "line" doesn't just hold true- it is an incredible understatement.
From the moment I stepped foot on UA headquarters, I was on the go. As an intern in the digital marketing department, I was constantly reminded, "Social media never sleeps, Dayana;" quickly, I realized I wouldn't be doing much sleeping either. I was (literally) sprinting from meeting to meeting across headquarters, interviewing the brand's professional athletes, and working at sporting events around the country. Already, I was beginning to note the striking similarities between life at Under Armour and at Northwestern.
Oftentimes people say that what one learns in school is useless in the workplace. I would be lying if I said the thought hadn't crossed my mind during one of my numerous all-nighters throughout the school year. However, during this internship it became clear to me that my experiences as a Northwestern student-athlete had more than prepared me for my workplace. Considering the unforgiving quarter system, grueling schedules, and multiple cross-campus practices a day, my adjustment wasn't a drastic one.
Throughout the summer, the similarities proved endless. As I got to know the company's culture, I began to realize more and more what an incredibly cohesive relationship was being formed between Under Armour and Northwestern. Both ends live and breathe their values of teamwork, determination and excellence. Both ends are seen as the underdogs, yet continue to work relentlessly. Both Under Armour and Northwestern don't just demand respect... they are willing to fight for it.
Naturally, I was hungry for any Northwestern-related information I could find. I spent any free-time I had badgering the on-field design teams and ooh-ing and ahh-ing over new uniforms and gear. I not-so-casually invited myself to the video shoot for the uniform teaser, where I would stand in a corner attempting to exude professionalism, while I jumped up and down squealing on the inside. It continuously blew my mind the amount of authenticity and attention to detail Under Armour dedicated to anything Northwestern-related.
On the day of the football uniform reveal, fellow Wildcat and ESPN sports business reporter Darren Rovell first broke the news. Immediately following, my fellow digital marketing interns and I were given the responsibility of pushing the unveiled designs over social media. I watched the very collages I had put together that morning spread like wildfire over the internet- whether it was my favorite sports blog or my friend's Facebook page, the Northwestern stripe was now everywhere.
Never have I seen such incredibly positive feedback. It didn't matter what critics thought... amongst the Northwestern community, the excitement was undeniable. It became obvious to everyone that Under Armour and Northwestern would serve as a catalyst for one another, immediately catapulting this new partnership to the forefront of collegiate athletics.
That was when it really hit me. Under Armour didn't just design our uniforms; Under Armour had brought to life the grit, determination, and unbeatable quality our athletes represent everyday. The "stripe" isn't just something aesthetically pleasing, a design to wear on our chests; the stripe is something tangible to get behind, something that is only ours, and something that embodies the Northwestern spirit proudly for everyone to recognize. If there is one thing I learned from my summer experience, it's this: Under Armour and Northwestern did not simply form a new business arrangement. Under Armour and Northwestern have come together to begin a complete and total movement... and this movement begins with reclaiming the stripe.
The 'Cats, once up by 22, were now down six and desperately needing a classic two-minute drive to rescue their season opener at Syracuse. This was just the kind of moment savored by any competitor, just the kind of burden a true leader wants on his shoulders, just the kind of situation a swashbuckling quarterback relishes. Kain Colter is all of those things, a competitor and a true leader and a swashbuckling quarterback, but here he proved himself to be something even more impressive than all that. He proved it my putting his team above himself.
Demetrius Dugar faced a hostile Carrier Dome environment in his first career start in 2009, and will return to Syracuse as a full-time starter for the 'Cats this Saturday.
The job belonged to Sherrick McManis, a senior so accomplished that he would eventually be drafted by the Houston Texans. But then, shortly before the 'Cats played the third game of their 2009 season at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse, the cornerback was injured, and thrust into his spot was a callow freshman named Demetrius Dugar. A year earlier, down at Houston's powerful Aldine High, he had helped catalyze his team to a playoff berth and earned All-District honors. But here against the Orange, he remembers, "It was a lot of butterflies.
are excited to unveil our 2012 Twitter hashtag for Northwestern Football and
all of our 19 varsity sports programs over the coming academic school year:
Why #B1GCats? We love the way it channels both our Chicago's Big Ten Team brand and
our membership in the "B1G" Conference. While the Wildcat is one of the most
popular nicknames in collegiate athletics, we truly are the only #B1GCats. It's
also shorter than #Northwestern--we love what our school name stands for, but it
was not made for a 140-character world.
the realm of the B1G, we also are excited about the way our hashtag complements
the Big Ten's stable of Twitter accounts. The #B1GCats play @B1GFootball.
will be our official hashtag across all sports in 2012-13, and we still will
use #Northwestern as well. The #Northwestern #B1GCats open the season at Syracuse
at 11 a.m. CT Saturday. Make sure you use the hashtag for the best chance of
inclusion in our @Storify social media recap after the game!
us welcome the #B1GCats hashtag into our Twitter family by using it today in a
clever and creative tweet. We'll pick one of our favorites and award an @UnderArmour purple heatgear t-shirt to its author!
* Often, during his Monday press conference, 'Cat coach Pat Fitzgerald would spice his comments about a player or a position group with the word "fun" or the phrase "enjoy the moment" or the exhortation to "have some fun." This all seemed counter-intuitive just days before his team's Saturday season opener in the hostile dome out in Syracuse. But then, near the end of his time on stage, that all made sense when he offered up this. "We've been practicing now since January in some way, shape or form," he offered up, "either in the weight room, or conditioning, or spring ball. Then the guys worked their tails off this summer, we feel strong our our chemistry, then through the grind of camp. So I'm looking forward to going and playing. I'll know a lot more (about his team) next Monday. It's kind of like waiting for your baby to be born. 'Hey. It's got ears. It's got a nose.' So here we go. Let's see what we look like."
The play, a run, is simply called Inside Zone, and when it was called for him early Tuesday afternoon, Treyvon Green slipped through a crease and gained a tidy six yards. He, later, would not remember who hit him and brought him down. But he would remember that, after he picked himself up off the field, he thought, "OK, I'm back. That setback I had, it's time for me to get back and get ready for the game and help my teammates."
the early hours of August 6, 2012, a car-sized rover called Curiosity landed on
Mars in the culmination of a 254-day, 350-million mile journey. The
much-celebrated and nerve wracking landing captured the nation's fascination
before Curiosity began its scheduled two year mission of studying the climate
and geology of Mars. One former Northwestern student-athlete stayed up late to
watch the landing live for a very good reason: he played a role in designing
part of the Curiosity Rover.
They are now, an hour into Wednesday's practice, off by themselves, isolated from their 'Cat teammates at Camp Kenosha. Here, at one corner of the field, it is just the wide receivers and Dennis Springer, their position coach, and for long minutes they take turns pairing off in front of his watchful eyes. At his first whistle, one in the pair will chop step. At his second whistle, that same one will half-block the other. After his third whistle, there is almost always some instruction.
Notes, quotes and observations from Practice One of Day One at beautiful Camp Kenosha, where a light drizzle failed to stop the proceedings. . .
* Sophomore running back Treyvon Green, who took a hard hit at last Friday's practice and was later taken to the hospital, accompanied the 'Cats on their journey north. He did not work out on Monday morning. But later coach Pat Fitzgerald said, "Trey's doing great. He's doing great. We fully expect him to be back for the opener.
The 2012 Summer Olympics came to an end yesterday. Northwestern wrestling head coach Drew Pariano and associate head coach Tim Cysewski were across the pond supporting Jake Herbert during Saturday's 84 kg freestyle competition. The two are heading back to the US on Aug. 15 and Pariano checked in with one final blog from London.
Tim Cysewski (left) and Drew Pariano (right) with Northwestern graduate Jake Herbert (middle) at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.
Jake Herbert was involved in two of the most controversial matches at the 2012 Olympic Freestyle Wrestling competition. Both matches involved official challenges that resulted in points for his opponents. Throughout it all, Jake was full of class and did himself and the United States proud.
The entire Herbert support group was there to greet him after his matches and it was an emotional welcome to say the least. The sport of wrestling will at times "tear your heart out" and Saturday was a prime example of that fact. It's an extremely personal sport and all of our student-athletes at Northwestern train very hard to be able to compete at the highest levels. Jake has set the stage for everyone who follows in his footsteps.
Jake's overall mood was one of appreciation. He thanked all of his supporters, family members and NU friends personally on Saturday night. I for one was again impressed with Jake; not a lot of world class athletes' could pull it together to sincerely thank each and every person who traveled to London for him - Jake did.
I believe that there are too many cliches in sports and most of them drive wrestlers and their coaches crazy. So, I won't even begin to think about some of the ways to put it into words other than to say: We will have the opportunity to see Jake compete internationally for the next several years. Those were the words coming from Jake throughout Saturday evening. He is determined to bring home a World title in 2013.