Dear New Mexico Bowl,
I want to open this letter by saying how much I have enjoyed your work.
As an avid fan of college football, I have appreciated at least 15 minutes or so of almost every New Mexico Bowl. In fact, I nearly watched the entirety of the 2012 classic between Arizona and Nevada. A 49-48 epic for the ages between two 7-5 teams in front of 2,500 people at 11 a.m. in Albuquerque! To me, that was what the entire sport of college football is about.
As a fan of Breaking Bad and elk, I have always respected your state. And as a fan of quality underwear brands, I especially appreciated your longtime partnership with unmarked activewear manufacturer Gildan. It is sad that your sponsorship agreement with them fell apart. I hope you two can one day overcome your differences and regain the spark that made your annual mid-December romance so special.
Until that reunion between bowl game and Canada’s #1 producer of unmarked activewear happens, though, there is the present to worry about. Last week, I read that the New Mexico Bowl severed ties with its existing sponsor after a local journalist discovered DreamHouse -- a local film production company -- did not have a business license or a functioning office, and seemed to exist in name only.
As someone who respects the integrity of the entertainment and college sports industries, this came as a shock to me and everyone else -- but especially you! We’re under two months away from the most important day of the New Mexico Bowl’s year, and the game sits unsponsored by anything but the great state of New Mexico itself.
In a just world, the approval of the Land of Enchantment would be enough for anyone. New Mexico is awesome, and things it likes must be awesome too. Unfortunately, this is not a just world, something you know after having your primary sponsor evaporate just three weeks after signing a deal.
Fortunately, life and football share a lot in common. For example, fumbles happen. The ball gets loose on everyone from time to time, even for a storied institution like the premier pre-Christmas matchup between roughly the Mountain West’s second or third best team and Conference USA’s second or third best team.
But any fumble comes down to one thing: How you recover it. And look at me here, already diving on the ball for you, waiting to hand it back to you, so you can push victory.
I represent an interest called Banner Society. We love college football a lot -- so much so that we started an entire community about only college football. We have podcasts, a robust following on social media, and a website with tons of fascinating evergreen content about college football.
The people involved have a long track record of determining how we talk about the sport. We accidentally gave the Pac-12 their most successful piece of branding ever when we came up with the #Pac12AfterDark hashtag. We spread the joy of #MACtion to the masses and elevated the Sun Belt to its current status as the #FunBelt. People are “talkin’ bout the Noles” when discussing Florida State, attending El Assico when Iowa State and Iowa play, and thinking about Piesman
Trophy moments whenever a big man accidentally gets his hands on a ball during a game. The term “surrender cobra,” to describe a fan with their hands behind their head after a devastating loss, is an invention of our own Holly Anderson.
We’ve accidentally become a free advertising agency for the sport. Fortunately for you, we have not wised up and started charging yet.
This is where you come in, all too happy to take advantage of our gullibility by granting us the naming rights to the Banner Society New Mexico Bowl. Just look at that hashtag: #BannerSocietyNewMexicoBowl. That’s a hashtag big enough to cover the Sandia Mountains, long enough to span the mighty Rio Grande that runs through your beautiful city. Just typing it, people will get winded, feeling the power of the wide-open New Mexico desert.
From the top, a disclosure: We can’t offer you money to sponsor your bowl. Then again, neither can anyone else so far, including the sponsor you signed in October.
We do have a unique value for you, though. What we have to give is the undivided attention of the internet’s foremost appreciator of college football’s finer things and places, its most devoted writers, and the not-insignificant social media muscle of yours truly. I am not exaggerating when I say that over 133,000 people follow me on Twitter dot com, and that my long experience on the site includes such accomplishments as:
Getting into a fight with the lead singer of Blues Traveler
Receiving retweets from such important celebrities as “227” star Jackée Harry, roots-rocker Jason Isbell, and Waffle House
Being followed by important influencers of our moment like Chrissy Teigen, boutique gas station Sheetz, and the Oregon Duck
Frankly, just getting me all by my lonesome would be a serious deal. Landing the whole group means having all of Banner Society gas up the best pre-Christmas bowl game for six weeks straight, cover the game like it’s the Super Bowl but with more interesting teams, and attend while extolling all the virtues of the Albuquerque metropolitan area’s considerable attractions.
(Petroglyphs! What other city has Albuquerque’s insanely strong petroglyph game?)
Moreover, on the scale of bowl game sponsors and their potential risk profile, Banner Society compares favorably to even the underwriters of much older and larger games. Unlike SoFi, sponsors of the Hawai’i Bowl, we aren’t making money off student loan holders’ misery or charging the government a billion dollars apiece for stealth bombers, like Military Bowl sponsor Northrop Grumman. Unlike the fattening Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, our website and community contain no carbs. (Or at least our beautiful readers and listeners don’t LOOK like they contain an excessive amount of carbs.)
Our list of all-natural ingredients is simple: 100% college football, 100% of the time. For the low price of “yes,” gritty gamer Banner Society will carry the New Mexico Bowl all the way back from a deficit and across the goal line for 2019.
We’re throwing you the ball, New Mexico Bowl. All you have to do is catch it and stop worrying about the money. After all, it’s not playing for free, if you do it for the love of the game. If that’s good enough for the players receiving nothing but gift bags and a free chili cook-off for their labor here, well, it is beyond time that it should be enough for the people running bowl games, too.