Pizza Hut and the NCAA announced a multi-year agreement Wednesday that will keep Pizza Hut the Official Pizza of the NCAA through the 2020-2021 academic year.
With the Official Pizza designation, Pizza Hut has the rights to activate around all 90 NCAA championships each year, from basketball and hockey, to bowling, fencing, baseball, beach volleyball, and beyond. The NCAA agreement, which started in 2016, further strengthens the pizza company’s position within sports. Earlier this year, Pizza Hut became the Official Pizza Partner of the NFL. Pizza Hut is the only brand to have national partnerships with both the NCAA and NFL.
“The excitement and entertainment of enjoying live sports with friends and family is a time-honored tradition, and Pizza Hut aligns naturally with these experiences,” says Zipporah Allen, chief marketing officer, Pizza Hut, U.S. “Pizza and sports are a perfect match. From the Men’s Final Four and College World Series, to the NFL Draft and Super Bowl, we’re looking forward to feeding the passion and excitement of all sports fans at every level.”
Pizza Hut will support intercollegiate athletics and student-athlete achievements through marketing programs and initiatives at multiple NCAA championships. The partnership provides Pizza Hut the ability to use official NCAA marks and media, as well as the opportunity activate at official NCAA events, including NCAA March Madness, College World Series, Frozen Four and more. The partnership was facilitated through CBS Sports and Turner, which manage and collaborate on the NCAA’s Corporate Champion and Partner program.
“We’ve seen some highlight-reel worthy performances from Pizza Hut over the past few years, everything from the pizza ordering Pie Tops to the Pizza Hut Fan Challenge at many of our championships, and we can’t imagine a partner who is more committed to bringing additional excitement and entertainment to NCAA fans,” adds Ellen Lucey, director of championships & alliances, NCAA.
Pizza Hut recently signed a multi-year agreement with the NFL, connecting the brand with the NFL and its teams, players, events, partners, properties and experiences that capture the passion of football fans. The NFL partnership includes collective use of all 32 team marks and will be focused on enhancing the fans’ at-home watching experience.