The University of North Texas will be paying the Dallas Cowboys at least $1.725 million over the next two years and up to $7.5 million over the next eight years as part of the exclusive advertising deal they signed with the team in August, according to the contract obtained by The Lewisville Texan Journal.
Because the Cowboys, through Frisco Management LP, have also dealt recently with Frisco and are currently negotiating with Lewisville ISD, how the organization conducts its business is important to all of North Texas. When the contract was initially signed, the Cowboys organization declined to share it, and even forbid UNT officials from discussing it in detail. However, an open records request made by The Lewisville Texan successfully obtained the contract, finally revealing the details of the agreement. The full contract is available online.
The agreement is broken down into four two-year segments. Either UNT or Frisco Management LP could opt out at any of these break points. The payments ramp up annually — while the school will pay $850,000 total for the 2017 school year and $875,500 for the 2018 school year, the last two years of the deal cost more than $1 million each. These totals will be paid in quarterly installments ranging from $218,875 to $253,736, except for this first school year, which will be paid in two installments of $450,000 each, one of which is already paid.
Additionally, the school will pay $4,000 for every postseason game played while the agreement is in effect.
For its money, UNT gets to call itself the “proud partner” of the Dallas Cowboys, get four free tickets and three free parking passes to each game — though they are required to pay face value for these items for postseason games — and a handful of advertising and academic benefits.
The contract specifies several places where the Cowboys will promote UNT’s brand such as The Frisco STAR or AT&T Stadium. UNT advertisements will be part of a rotation of one sign inside the AT&T Stadium concourse, and three screens inside the arena itself will each display one 30-second spot for the school per game. Additionally, UNT advertisements will be added into rotation for the Cowboys’ sign on the corner of Division Street and Highway 360, which is visible year-round.
On television, the contract guarantees a 30-second commercial in each broadcast of the Jason Garrett Show, or any similar show with a new head coach should Garrett leave the organization, and a 30-second commercial during each pre-season game. Additionally, UNT will become the first-down brand for a quarter of every preseason game the Cowboys broadcast, which currently comes out to three preseason games per year. On the radio, UNT will receive a five-second and a 30-second advertisement before, during and after every pre-season and regular season game on the Dallas Cowboys Radio Network, but they will have to pay for these spots during the postseason.
Online, the contract guarantees 2 million impressions per year as well as a landing page on the Dallas Cowboys official site. It also promises 6 million impressions through the “At The Pump” digital media network, which Frisco Management does not own. If Frisco Management and At The Pump’s agreement is terminated, this part of the contract with UNT will have to be modified to provide a similar value to the school.
Academically, the contract carries several benefits, including four guest speakers from the Cowboys per year for UNT events, and the ability for UNT to schedule tours of the Cowboy’s Frisco STAR practice facilities. The contract also designates four business areas that will offer one internship each to UNT students during the contract years. While UNT representatives listed internship opportunities as a big plus of the deal when it was signed, this amounts to just four total internships per year.
According to UNT’s website, estimated full-time tuition and fees for a student taking 30 credit hours per year would be $10,518. The total value of the first two years of the Cowboys’ advertising deal would be enough to put 41 students through four years at the university.