Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown Apparel Selling Out as Basketball Team Continues Streak

Since last Sunday’s win propelled Georgetown into the Final Four, March Madness has evolved into shopping fever.

Georgetown University Bookstore was shipped commemorative merchandise just hours after the Hoyas clinched a Final Four berth Sunday night, and it has flown off the shelves ever since. The store is selling Final Four T-shirts, sweatshirts and hats.

Ellen Winther, a merchandising manager for the store, said that the store pre-ordered the apparel contingent on Georgetown winning. The store has sold out of much of the apparel since it arrived Tuesday morning, in large part due to alumni purchases, Winther said.

“We’ve received online orders, telephone calls and e-mails from alumni in every state and almost every country I could imagine,” Winther said. “It’s great to see that the alumni [are] still so connected to the university,” she added.

Kanisha Young, a salesclerk at the store, said that she has enjoyed seeing the store come alive.

“It’s been crazy the way people rush in and out all day, but it really has been exciting,” she said. “We’ve had so many people coming in, sometimes the same people three or four times, to check to see if we’ve gotten in new shipments. We’re running out of some of the smaller sizes, too,” Young said.

The store’s management has kept record of bestsellers and placed reorders each day. Winther said that the T-shirts have been particularly popular.

“We sold out of a blue T-shirt that says `Dominate the Dome,’ and another shirt with small pictures of each of the players’ jerseys,” she said.

In addition to generating increased sales, the team’s winning streak will likely lead to greater royalty revenues for the university.

As late as 1991, when the Hoyas were a regular fixture in the NCAA rankings, the school led the country in royalty payments for sales of Georgetown merchandise, according to data collected by the Collegiate Licensing Company. In recent years, however, as Georgetown’s program fell out of national recognition, the university has steadily fallen in the licensing rankings. Last year, the university fell out of the top 50 for the first time, finishing 58th.

On Thursday, shoppers cited a variety of reasons for their purchases.

Kathryn Spectorsky (COL ’10) said that she wanted to buy a new shirt to wear on Saturday night in Atlanta when the Hoyas take on Ohio State.

“I have the `We Are Georgetown’ shirt, but I’m looking for something else fun to show off some school pride during the weekend in Atlanta,” Spectorsky said.

Laurel Stankus, a prospective student visiting campus, said that even though she is not a passionate basketball fan, she wanted to join in the campus-wide support for the team.

“From an outside perspective, it’s really exciting to see so much school spirit all over the campus,” Stankus said.

Lynn Kreusser, visiting campus with her daughter, who was recently accepted to Georgetown, said that she promised to find a shirt for her son.

“My son back home plays basketball, and I promised that I would buy him a shirt while I was visiting,” she said.

Several other shoppers sorted through the clothing racks while describing over their cell phones what the store had to offer to friends and family members.

The university bookstore isn’t the only retailer profiting from the Hoyas’ recent success. Sue Hari, a manager of GT Players on Wisconsin Avenue, said that although the store has yet to receive Final Four merchandise, Georgetown apparel has been flying off the shelves this week. The store was sold out of Hoya basketball jerseys yesterday, and sales for hats and other apparel are up.

Although business has been booming, Hari said that customers are mainly looking for merchandise specific to the Final Four. She said that because she anticipated the surge in sales, she placed large orders for Georgetown apparel before last weekend’s games.

“I really hope we get the Final Four locker room shirts in soon,” she said.

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