Nike’s Phil Knight on the college football and basketball trail ‘Cold Calling’ for Oregon, trying to find a new home for the Ducks

Report: Nike founder Phil Knight ‘cold calling’ on Oregon’s behalf in conference hunt
from Adam Stites, with

The Oregon Ducks are in a precarious position with the impending departure of USC and UCLA from the Pac-12, and Nike founder Phil Knight is reportedly “working the phone” to try to help.

“A marketing genius, benefactor, philanthropist and multi-billionaire, the Shoe Dog himself is apparently using all his resources to find a home for Oregon, a program Knight has made one of the most recognizable college sports brands as a de facto offshoot of his Nike empire,” Dennis Dodd of CBS Sports wrote Saturday.

“Knight has been reduced to cold-calling telemarketer. And that’s a sad situation.”

Oregon’s top choice was reportedly to follow the pair of Los Angeles schools into the Big Ten. But the Ducks, along with the Washington Huskies, were turned away while the conference waits to see if it can convince Notre Dame to drop its independent status and join.

There have also been reports that the Big 12 has considered adding as many as six of the 10 remaining Pac-12 schools, including Oregon. Even an ACC partnership with the Pac-12 has been discussed as a possibility.

Since 2010, Oregon has appeared in four Rose Bowls, two Fiesta Bowls and two national championship games, once during the BCS era and another in the College Football Playoff.