Humor & Impulse

The Weirdest, Wackiest, Worst Sports Endorsements of All Time

Not all athlete endorsements are a home run. Here are some of the strangest, excerpted from Kathryn and Ross Petras’s The Stupidest Sports Book of All Time
Buy the Book
Indiebound | B&N | Amazon | Workman

Endorsing products—either their own or someone else’s—is a time-honored way for athletes to rake in the bucks. The first sports endorsements appeared as far back as the late nineteenth century, so there were bound to be a few mismatched collaborations and dubious products over the years, such as . . .

THE RAY LEWIS SNUGGIE: Yes, the one-piece-blanket-with-arms-that-you-wear. The official Ray Lewis Snuggie was bright purple, and part of his RL52 clothing line, which debuted in 2010.

SHAQUILLE O’NEAL’S SHAQ-FU VIDEO GAME: A pretty bad name and, according to gamers, a pretty bad game. And speaking of bad product names related to Shaquille O’Neal, there’s also Shaq’s Luv Shaq Vodka—a very punny brand of vodka that Shaq said he’d release in 2012, but that never hit the market. Hard to imagine why.

BEN ROETHLISBERGER’S BIG BEN’S BEEF JERKY: It was sold in Pittsburgh-area grocery stores. The name sounds a little, well, jerky, but the problem really came after he was accused of sexual assault in 2009 and 2010. Suddenly it didn’t seem like a great idea to be talking about Big Ben’s Beef anything. PLB Sports, the company that produced it, dropped both Ben and his beef.

RONALDINHO’S SEX-FREE CONDOMS: A very peculiar (if not completely contradictory) name for a product not usually endorsed by athletes.

MANNY RAMIREZ’S SUM POOSIE ENERGY DRINK: Speaking of strange names and, for that matter, sex. Not that it’s supposed to be about sex exactly, even though there’s a scantily clad, large-breasted woman on the pink bottle and the owner of Sum Poosie said he considered himself “the Larry Flynt of energy drinks.”

CARSON PALMER’S AD FOR JOHN MORRELL SMOKED SAUSAGES: An extremely dubious print ad, exhorting you to “Go Longer” and showing then-hot-prospect Palmer shoving a long wiener into his mouth, which . . . well, you get it.

CHAD (JOHNSON) OCHOCINCO’S OCHOCINC-O’S, ROB GRONKOWSKI’S GRONK FLAKES, AND JUSTIN VERLANDER’S FASTBALL FLAKES: A group of cereal offenders. Ochocinc-O’s were sold to benefit Feed the Children, but the phone number on the box was for a phone sex line instead of the charity. Gronk Flakes, meanwhile, are still carried in New England grocery stores, and Fastball Flakes sold like hotcakes (hotflakes?) in the Michigan market.

The Stupidest Sports Book of All Time

No Comments

Leave a Reply