After what is rumored to be a multimillion-dollar naming deal, the iconic Cowboys Stadium will be called AT&T Stadium from now on.
In a press release, AT&T said part of its attraction to the deal was that Dallas is the company's home. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said in a statement that the naming deal ties the team with "one of the world's strongest and most innovative companies."
NPR member station KERA reports that the Cowboys have sought corporate sponsors before, but because of a sluggish economy could not find one lucrative enough when the new stadium opened in 2009.
Clarence Hill, Cowboys' beat writer for The Fort Worth Star-Telegram, had some harsh words for the move. He said on Twitter:
"i would have been okay with AT&T Cowboys Stadium. But taking Cowboys out the name entirely..Jerry sold out for the cash."
Back in 2011, Bloomberg took a look at naming rights deals in the NFL. It found that "22 of the league's 32 teams played in stadiums with a corporate name."
Bloomberg explained bluntly:
"Naming-rights deals are particularly valuable to teams because they provide a way to recoup some of the multimillion-dollar investment necessary to build new stadiums. For companies, the rights are a valuable piece of a larger sports-marketing portfolio. Why haven't some teams yet landed big corporate sponsorships? In some cases it's legacy (Lamebau Field); in others it's delusions of grandeur (Cowboys Stadium). In rare instances, it's the inability to find any deal at all."