Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Would the Real “12th Man” Please Stand Up?

Texas A&M and the Seattle Seahawks have reached an agreement over the use of the phrase “12th Man.”

As part of the agreement, the Seahawks acknowledge Texas A&M's ownership rights of the trademarked phrase but will continue to use it under license. Seattle will pay an undisclosed licensing fee to continue the use of the phrase.

The Aggies hold federal trademark rights to "12th Man” and wanted to stop Seattle from using the phrase earlier this year.

In February, the university filed a lawsuit in Brazos County over the Seahawks use of the trademark.

I guess I can see A&M’s point but how much did the Seahawks use of the phrase damage the Aggies? Did A&M lose ticket or merchandise sales? I guarantee they lost 1000% more revenue over the lousy play of their football team then they did from the Seahawks using their “sacred” phrase 2300 miles away.

In My Opinion it’s a sad day for you university when you have to earn your respect in the courtroom instead of on the playing field.

Origins of the term "12th man" aren't exactly clear, but the traditions in Seattle and College Station date back decades.

The Aggies trace their use to 1922, when an injury-plagued roster led the team to pull E. King Gill from the stands and suited him up to play. Gill never took to the field, but the legend strengthened campus-wide commitment to support the team. The words "Home of 12th Man" adorn the stadium and the entire school is considered the 12th Man.

The Seahawks retired the number 12 in 1984 to honor fans who made the old Kingdome one of the noisiest stadiums in football.