As a relative youngster and an American college football purist, I remember cringing when my employer, John Hancock, inserted its name in the official title of the bowl game that it sponsored. Overnight, the Sun Bowl became the John Hancock Sun Bowl, and the world of sports marketing was never the same.

Of course, now the practice is widespread. In the marketing game that is measured in eyeballs, it makes sense to have your logo plastered just about anywhere viewers will look, in return for your massive sponsorship fees. And if a sports writer from Boise plays by the rules and writes something about the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl, that’s exposure for the Tostitos brand that money can (and just did) buy.

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