Recurrent back problems caused Olympic swimmer Sam Howell to quit competitive swimming in 2012, leading him to a career as a personal trainer at a local Bojangles’ restaurant. Howell said his job as a gym trainer helped him stay in shape, displaying his impressive physique on social media and helping him build up a following on his Instagram page @sam_howell. Now, he’s partnering with Bojangles to raise money for the Tar Heels’ student-run organization called Habitat for Humanity.

The newest and newest! The most recent of all the sam’s! Sam Howell and D.J. Uiagalelei have teamed up to make Bojangles’ Famous Chicken ‘N Biscuits. The Bojangles Famous Chicken ‘N Biscuits will be sold at Bojangles’ starting October 18th, 2017. The reason they made this partnership is because both D.J. and Sam are from North Carolina, and they grew up eating Bojangles’ Famous Chicken ‘N Biscuits. They both love Bojangles’ Famous Chicken ‘N Biscuits and decided to partner to make the Bojangles’ Famous Chicken ‘N Biscuits and sell it for a limited time in Bojangles

North Carolina Tar Heels’ Sam Howell and Clemson Tigers’ Dj Uiagalelei, who both starred in the April 27th NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship game, recently teamed up with the world’s largest chicken restaurant chain, to support former Tar Heel and current Tigers’ D.J. Uiagalelei, who runs the Bojangles charity initiative.

North Carolina quarterback Sam Howell said before last season’s Orange Bowl that he had never eaten a steak. There will be no cheeseburgers or seafood. He said that his colleagues mocked him constantly, but he was a chicken-only guy.

Howell turned that culinary hot take into a new marketing deal on Wednesday, partnering with Bojangles in North Carolina on a new social media campaign in what is one of the most high-profile endorsements since the NCAA opened the door for all athletes to earn revenue from their name, image, and likeness (NIL) on July 1.

Howell, who grew up in Union County, North Carolina, only minutes from Bojangles’ headquarters in Charlotte, told ESPN, “I honestly believed something like this could be in play one day down the line, but I never imagined it would happen this early.” “However, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime chance, and it’s been a fun experience.”

Howell and Clemson quarterback D.J. Uiagalelei are the first college athletes to partner with Bojangles, which already works with several schools in the SEC and ACC. Both players will utilize their social media feeds to promote the brand, along with doing various in-person appearances in the coming months.

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When the new NIL regulations opened the door to sponsorships, Bojangles’ chief marketing officer Jackie Woodward said the business received a lot of requests from college players through social media. According to her, Howell and Uiagalelei offered two high-profile choices that were ideal for Bojangles’ target demographic.

“We felt that Bojangles fans are college athletics enthusiasts more than anything,” Woodward told ESPN. “This is an extension of what our consumers and fans care about.”

Since the new NIL regulations went into effect, Bojangles has been one of the most well-known companies to collaborate with collegiate players. Boost Mobile, which is partnering with Fresno State basketball stars Hanna and Haley Cavinder, and PetSmart, which is partnering with Arkansas receiver Trey Knox, are two other big-name agreements. Meanwhile, Alabama coach Nick Saban revealed Tuesday that after less than a month on the market, quarterback Bryce Young had already surpassed $1 million in NIL revenue.

Howell said that he was hesitant to enter the NIL market at first, preferring to focus on possibilities that would help both the community and his colleagues. Howell said Bojangles was a great match when he hired marketing company ESM to manage his NIL deals.

“The important thing for me was that I never wanted to be in a situation where I had to ignore my football responsibilities,” he said.

Howell is also collaborating with Table, a Chapel Hill-based organization that helps give meals to children in need. Table’s work is the focus of his debut collaboration with Bojangles.

Bojangles intends to extend its relationships with college players in the coming months, according to Woodward, who sees the NIL market as a good bridge between the restaurant’s Southeastern brand and the collegiate sports audience.

Meanwhile, Howell’s love of chicken — his favorite Bojangles meal is a Chicken Supreme combination with fries and sweet tea, he said — set the tone for the chain’s initial venture into NIL.

“That’s certainly a part of Sam’s narrative,” Woodward said, “and a part of the story we’re going to start creating together.” “Not only is he a famous chicken fan, but he also grew up in Bojangles’ backyard.”

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