Nike continues brilliant “Leave Nothing” campaign with “Fate” spot featuring LT & Polamalu

October 21, 2008

Thanks to Beyond Madison Avenue for the lead


Social THIS! Fantasy Football Week 2

September 13, 2008

The first week of the Social THIS! Fantasy Football League (#SMFFL) proved to be a rough one.  I had the fortune of being the hard luck loser…scoring the 2nd most points of the week but still losing to Jeremiah Owyang and his Little Birds.  I am hoping to rebound in week 2, which should have some fun “storylines”:

Hard Knox Life vs Dan Cordella’s Munoz Mustache Club:  Yahoo is predicting a coin-flip with both our teams forecasted to put up 91 points.  Hands down the game both of us will be watching is Dallas vs Philly.  In the back field, it will be the battle of the Dallas Cowboy RB’s as I pit Marion Barber against his Felix Jones. Then I have the Dallas Defense going against Brian Westbrook.  Plus I have TO as one of my WR’s.  But the real story is going to be Hurricane Ike since Dan has both Matt Schaub and Andre Johnson.  So far the game has been pushed back from Sunday till Monday.  Rumor is it might be cancelled all together.  I have my fingers crossed.

Mustangs vs The Beasties: Call it the “Battle of Detroit” as Michigan born Craig Daitch goes against new Detroit resident Scott Monty.  The big question of the day is if Monty actually changes his line-up to replace the injured Tom Brady with his back-up Jon Kitna (how very convenient in the Battle of Detroit).  Come on Scott, keep it competitive!

The Team w/ No Name vs LittleBirds:  Current Forrester Analyst Jeremiah Owyang goes against former Forrester Analyst Peter Kim, with Yahoo predicting both teams to put up 93 points.  Pete has all the Dallas players not on my roster with Romo at QB, Crayton at WR and Witten at TE.  LittleBirds meanwhile hopes for lighting to strike twice with Michael Turner and for Randy Moss to catch a few TD’s from Matt Cassel.

(Sidenote: I amazed that Matt Cassel hasn’t started a game since his senior year of high school.  How do you get drafted in the NFL after being a back-up your entire college career.  Yeah he was behind Carson Palmer and Matt Leinert, but seriously.)

Social THIS! Fantasy Football Draft Recap

September 1, 2008

Disclaimer: Over the next 4 months, football season will cause quite a few non-marketing posts to show up on Hard Knox Life. Hope you don’t mind too much!

“There’s nothing that cleanses your soul like getting the hell kicked out of you.” Woody Hayes, Legendary Head Coach of Ohio State

The other week, Peter Kim announced that he was pulling together some of the top minds in Social Media & Marketing for a Fantasy Football League called Social THIS!  Luckily for me, Pete was willing to expand the league to 12 teams and let me slip into the fray.  The competition is really a who’s who of blogging (team name/coach):

With games kicking off this coming weekend, we had our draft on Sunday.  Overall, I’m really happy with how my team turned out though the draft did have some interesting moves from my competition.  Here’s my insight / trash talk as we kick off the season:

  • I ran each team through the Football Guys Draft Dominator and Joe Jaffe looks to have the strongest initial team, thanks largely to his drafting of LT with the 2nd pick of the draft.  He should give a big hug to Scott Monty, who with the surprise first pick of the draft, went with Tom Brady – who was a stud last year but in expert leagues has an Average Draft Position (ADP) of 11.3.  Jaffe also stole the best kicker (Nick Folk) in the 9th round…4th kicker taken overall (more on that later…).  He also got a great value with Jay Cutler in the 11th Round.  Cutler is ranked by experts as the 8th best QB this year.
  • I’m feeling good in 2nd position, though my roster has a few too many Cowboys (TO, Marion Barber, Dallas D) and Saints (Brees, Colston) for my liking.  As a loyal Bengals fan, I hate cheering for the NFC.  But I didnt end up with any Steelers or Browns on my team, so at least I have that going for me.  And on the note of the Bengals, I could end up beating myself up for taking Brees instead of Carson Palmer and Colston instead of Ocho Cinco or TJ.
  • Jeremiah has the 3rd best predicted team, but is a study in contrast.  His QB core looks to be the lowest scoring (Garrard and the currently benched Matt Leinart) but he has a stud group of WR’s with two Top 10’s in Randy Moss and TJ “Who’s Your Mama”.  If Marshawn Lynch stays out of trouble with the law and Michael Turner proves his worth out of the shadow of LT, then Jeremiah could be looking at a scary good team. Read the rest of this entry »

Gillette and EA Sports launch the Champions of Gaming Tournament

August 29, 2008

Gillette announced yesterday they are teaming up with video game maker EA Sports to launch the Gillette-EA Sports Champions of Gaming competition that will match gamers against some of the top athletes in sports including Tiger Woods, Roger Federer and Derek Jeter

The Gillette — EA Sports Champions of Gaming — the world’s largest multi-sport gaming tournament — will officially launch in late October and provide gamers the opportunity to compete against others from around the world for the chance to be named a Global Champion of Gaming. The live global finals will be conducted in Tampa, Florida, in January 2009, with the Global Champions in each gaming category competing against one of the Gillette Champions — Gillette’s group of global sports superstars that includes Tiger Woods, Roger Federer and Derek Jeter. Gamers will be able to play via Xbox 360 Live on Tiger Woods PGA Tour 09, NASCAR 09, Madden NFL 09, NBA Live 09 and EA Sports FIFA Soccer 09. More information about the Gillette — EA Sports Champions of Gaming will be available after October 15, 2008, at

The official press release had this to say about the partnership:

“Gillette and EA Sports represent the best in grooming and gaming, and this partnership is a natural extension of our ongoing efforts to engage guys through their competitive nature and their passions, including sports,” said Peter Clay. “We’ll be working together to reach consumers with unique programs such as the Gillette-EA Sports Champions of Gaming, a global tournament that will offer gamers the opportunity to compete against the best in the world and then take on the Gillette Champions and other sports legends to see if they have what it takes to be the best.”

Not enough brands are leveraging the tremendous power of gaming to connect with their consumers.  Personally I am really excited to get involved with this.  I doubt P&G employees will be eligible to win (usual rules for promotions), but I’ll still be taking my shot on the Xbox 360 in Madden 09 just for the fun of it [btw, my Xbox 360 Live handle is DKnoxMU if want to play a game].

Unbelievable trip

March 31, 2008

Back from Vegas and I cannot even find the words to describe the trip.  We spent Friday night at the Hardwood Suite at the Palms Casino (instead of the Crib Suite).  10,000 square feet and a basketball court in the room.  Unbelieavable….Replica

Brands I Love: Adidas – Impossible is Nothing

March 22, 2008

When I was growing up, soccer was my Ali_Impossible_Is_Nothingsport of choice despite the fact I lived in the very football crazy town of Canton, Ohio (home of the Pro Football Hall of Fame).  I started playing when I was six years old and since that time, Adidas has been one of my favorite brands.  In the early years, the brand served as a statement for us soccer players because Adidas was a soccer brand.  It was a way to show the world (or at that time, the school) who we were and what we were about.  In that sense, I loved my Adidas Samba shoes and today I’m probably on my 15th pair of them.  Adidas has, and always will be, a lovemark for me.

That lovemark status helps drive my infatuation with their “Impossible Is Nothing” campaign.  In fact, I have a picture of the campaign hanging behind my desk at work to serve as everyday inspiration.  What I find interesting is the contrast behind Nike and Adidas.  Both are extremely successful companies and both have amazing marketing (possibly two of the best in the world).  But why is Nike just a brand I respect while Adidas is a brand I love?  Read the rest of this entry »

Nike – There are no Cinderella stories

March 12, 2008

I just saw this great new spot by Nike called Clocktower that is for their latest Jordan launch.  It never ceases to amaze me how Nike continiously nails the emotional feeling of an athlete.  The insight that Cinderella stories don’t happen without hard work is dead on.  And even better, the spot connects with true fans who recognize the significance of snapshots like the practice football play being run on the Boise State field.  Brilliant yet again.