Arizona Cardinals' Glendale Stadium To Get A New Name

It looks like the Arizona Cardinals won't be playing in University of Phoenix Stadium much longer.

The Cardinals and the University of Phoenix announced an agreement Tuesday on a revised sponsorship to shift the stadium's naming rights to another party other than the university.  The news release emphasizes that the University of Phoenix "will continue to serve as the club's official education partner, as together they advance their shared belief that higher education is a valuable investment."

The original contract was for 20 years.  Under its terms, the university pays the Cardinals $7.7 million dollars per year, for a total of $154 million.

However, the University of Phoenix and its parent company, The Apollo Group, are facing financial troubles due in part to steeply declining enrollment at the U of P.

Sports industry analysts say in today's climate, a stadium naming rights deal could bring in at least twice what the University of Phoenix contract calls for.  So even though the 20-year naming rights agreement is only 11 years old, the agreement to let U of P out of its contract will probably result in the Cardinals realizing significantly higher revenue from a new sponsor.

The university's SVP/Chief Marketing Officer, Joan Blackwood, said in a statement "Like many organizations, University of Phoenix is constantly evaluating and updating our public-facing initiatives and partnerships... As the University further increases its focus on student retention, graduation rates, and employment-related outcomes, and has less of an emphasis on growth, we've identified areas to realign our policies accordingly."

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