By Daniel C. Houston
Dr Pepper will remain the official soft drink of the Baylor Bears through August 2015 as the result of an agreement between the university and Dr Pepper Snapple Group Inc.
Administrators announced at a Thursday press conference the university’s longstanding sponsorship deal with Dr Pepper will be extended by two years with no substantive changes to the existing agreement.
The agreement grants Dr Pepper exclusive vending rights on campus and advertising opportunities in exchange for undisclosed financial compensation, Nick Joos, executive associate athletics director for external affairs, said.
“We’re not allowed to disclose [the amount],” Joos said Thursday, “but I will tell you that they are our largest corporate partner that we have by far, and they probably have been for the entire time that the contract has existed. It’s a win-win for both parties.”
Rodger Collins, president of packaged beverages for Dr Pepper, said in a university press release that reaching a sponsorship deal with Baylor is perhaps more beneficial now than ever.
“We’re privileged to have seen some great times over the years we’ve been involved with Baylor, but it’s hard to remember a more exciting time to be their partner than today,” Collins said. “The Baylor community has an unmistakable pride and passion for the university and its traditions, and we are proud to be a part of that experience.”
Joos highlighted the longtime relationship between Baylor and Dr Pepper, which dates back well before the company became Baylor’s exclusive soft drink provider in 1997.
The original Dr Pepper beverage was invented in Waco in 1885, the same year Baylor moved to Waco from its first home in Independence.
“Dr Pepper Hours have been happening at Baylor since 1953, so I think that’s something that’s been ingrained in the fabric of our institution, and I think that life long Dr Pepper drinkers are born at Baylor,” Joos said. “Think of stories back in the day when the bears would drink Dr Pepper on the [football] sidelines. I just think Baylor and Dr Pepper are icons in Texas.”
The existing agreement was set to expire in late 2013 before the extension was approved, Joos said.
In addition to Dr Pepper, the university is able to serve the company’s other products on campus, including Snapple, 7-Up, A&W Root Beer, Country Time Lemonade, Canada Dry, Mott’s, Hawaiian Punch, Deja Blue drinking water and other beverages.