IMG Licensing, a division of global sports, fashion and media company IMG Worldwide, announced today that it has signed the Family of legendary basketball coach John R. Wooden for licensing and endorsements.
Coach Wooden led UCLA to 10 NCAA National Championships in a 12-year period, including an unprecedented seven consecutive titles from 1967-1973. In addition, his teams won a record 88 consecutive games and 38 consecutive NCAA Tournament
Games. He was named national coach of the year six times. As a player at Purdue University where he won a National Championship, Wooden was the first player ever to be named basketball All-American three times. He was also the first person to be named a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame as both a player and a coach.
Following an extremely competitive process, IMG Licensing was selected by the Wooden Family to manage endorsement, licensing and media opportunities. IMG represents the “right of publicity” of John Wooden including his name, voice, likeness, image, and signature. Additionally, the family has a plethora of videos, photos, and other rare mementos that will be used in a unique collectible program.
Beyond his unparalleled success at UCLA where he was beloved by his former players, Coach Wooden's legacy and philosophy towards teaching, motivating, and leading is forever embodied in his Pyramid of Success, which will forever serve as a teaching platform for children, athletes, and coaches of all ages. The Pyramid has already been adapted into a children's book: "Inch and Miles, The Journey to Success.” The foundation of the Pyramid is the knowledge that life, like basketball, is a team game. "The main ingredient in stardom," Coach Wooden told his players, "is the rest of the team."
“We are very excited to represent the Family of Coach Wooden,” said Daniel Siegel, Vice President of Licensing. “As a UCLA alum and long-time admirer of Coach Wooden, I’m honored to have the opportunity to work with his lovely family to preserve the Wooden brand and legacy.” Renowned for his short, simple inspirational messages to his players, many fans and admirers view Coach Wooden as a combination of Vince Lombardi, General Patton and John F. Kennedy.
IMG Licensing will seek opportunities in traditional sports licensing categories, including memorabilia and apparel, and will work closely with IMG College to explore synergies with UCLA to carry on Coach Wooden’s connection to its storied basketball heritage.
”To me, John Wooden was the greatest coach of modern sport—not just college basketball. More than that, he was a wonderful person, teacher, mentor, husband, father and grandfather. I was fortunate to have the opportunity to know and spend some time with him. He inspired me and our team with both his example and his brilliance. All of us at IMG are humbled and proud to have the opportunity to be associated with his incredible legacy,” said Ben Sutton, President of IMG College which also represents marketing interests of the UCLA Bruins.
IMG will also be developing the philosophies of Coach Wooden and his Pyramid of Success across film, television, and other forms of media.
“It is a distinct honor to represent the Family of Coach John Wooden. With all of the challenges facing today’s world, his legacy is as important to our society as ever before. We live in a time when Coach Wooden’s teachings on morality, integrity, and values serve as an example to people of all ages,” said Vice President of IMG Broadcasting West Coast, Babette Perry.
Coach Wooden’s daughter Nan and son Jim added, “We are very pleased to have a company of IMG’s reputation working to expand the Wooden global brand. Our dad touched millions of people around the globe with his simple, direct approach to life and he has provided his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren with a blueprint for success that we feel should be shared with as many people as possible.”