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It’s magic! magicJack Bowl might be back

Posted Feb 19, 2009 by Brett McMurphy

Updated Feb 19, 2009 at 10:46 PM

Just like magic, the magicJack St. Petersburg Bowl might actually return next season.

On Jan. 31, 2009, when magicJack’s one-year naming rights deal and exclusivity contract expired, officials with ESPN Regional, who run the bowl, were under the assumption magicJack was not interested in extending their naming rights deal and magicJack was removed from the bowl’s official website.

Last week, Carlos Padilla, the St. Pete Bowl’s marketing director, indicated the bowl was “confident” it would find a new partner. Padilla also said the bowl “was disappointed to have lost such a great partner in magicJack.”

However, after The Tampa Tribune reported the magicJack sponsorship was kaput, magicJack sponsor Mel Arthur countered that wasn’t true.


Well, it turns out that the advertising agency hired by magicJack to extend the naming rights deal was not aware of the Jan. 31 deadline.

“There was some miscommunication between us and the [ad] agency and back to the client,” said Clint Overby, ESPN Regional’s senior director of events. “Our conversations led for us to believe that magicJack had declined [wanting to extend the naming right deal].

“Someone didn’t pick up the phone to close the loop. It was a simple miscommunication. We’re not trying to throw anyone under the bus.”

Overby said ESPN Regional and magicJack are working on extending the deal for multiple years and hopes to have something done in the next 30 days.

So when I wrote last week, my lock of the year was that USF would not make a second consecutive magicJack St. Petersburg Bowl appearance, it looks like it could still be a possibility. Keep your fingers crossed.

Reader Comments

Por (Um) on February 19, 2009 (Suggest removal)

Why not call Magicjack last week and ask them, avoiding all this confusion?

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Por (bullscott) on February 20, 2009 (Suggest removal)

Brett, very cute.  You say it sarcastically like we should keep our fingers crossed to underachieve this year.  Would that make your day? Seriously, Brett you come across as biased.  If you don’t like the Bulls, perhaps you need to move on.

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Por (Brett McMurphy) on February 20, 2009 (Suggest removal)

Bullscott, perhaps I should have phrased that better - I meant keep your fingers crossed the bowl will be named magicJack again. It’s wayyyyyyyyyy early, but I don’t think USF will go back to the (whatever it’s called) St. Pete Bowl anyway.

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Por (Courtney Perigo) on February 20, 2009 (Suggest removal)

I have to agree with the comment above.  You’re coming across as biased.  I remember when you did the “USF at 100” article back in the day.  Where did that Brett go?  I don’t like reading this stuff anymore.

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Por (Brett McMurphy) on February 20, 2009 (Suggest removal)

Courtney, I remember the USF at 100 article. That was fun. I’m sure I’ll do a USF at 200 down the road. Also, did a similar look back at Leavitt when he got his 80th victory last season. I’m the same guy.

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Por (Ben Forlaw) on February 20, 2009 (Suggest removal)

I didn’t see any biased commentary here.  Brett is reporting on a bowl game in the area that is undergoing some changes and made a play on words ... this article really has nothing to do with USF at all, even though it is mentioned at the bottom of the paragraph.  No one really wants USF to go back to the St. Pete Bowl, we all want a more successful season than that.

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Por (Patrick O'Rourke) on February 20, 2009 (Suggest removal)

We have the biggest population of pansies in our fan base I swear.  I’ve never seen or heard this much belly aching from any other group of fans regarding the basic reporting of their school’s news.

“Brett, why don’t you lick Leavitt’s Under Armours like the rest of us?”

“Brett, how can you say Jim Leavitt doesn’t belong in the Pro Football Hall Of Fame….and the baseball, golf, NASCAR, rugby, and pontoon boat racing halls of fame, too”

“Brett, you are a terrible reporter because you don’t have a big set of bull horns on the hood of your vehicle.”

You nancy-boys are always good for a chuckle.

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Por (Dan) on February 20, 2009 (Suggest removal)

Now, see, I think this was an article written in good humor, to poke a little fun. I think it’s great of the St Pete Bowl returns, as long as USF does not return to it. If Magicjack is the sponsor, (sigh) so be it, but it is still a crappy name, as bad as Bowl or Meineke Car Care Bowl. Maybe worse. Is there anything we can do about these embarrassing bowl names the Big East allows? Are we really that big of a whore? Who can I write to?

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Por (Disk encryption software) on March 04, 2009 (Suggest removal)

I was thinking of looking up some of them newspaper websites, but am glad I came here instead. Although glad is not quite the right word… let me just say I needed this after the incessant chatter in the media, and am grateful to you for articulating something many of us are feeling - even from distant shores.
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