Outback Steakhouse is enlisting NCAA athletes for a philanthropic effort aimed at attracting college football fans and college-aged consumers.
The fast casual chain signed the first seven college football athletes to join its new TeamMates program. The initiative “celebrates all the good that comes with being a teammate in sports and in the community,” per the company.
The athletes -- players from The Ohio State University, the University of Michigan and the University of Florida -- will give back to their communities by raising money locally and nationwide.
Also, from Oct. 21 to 24, students in the appropriate college towns -- Gainesville, Florida, Ann Arbor, Michigan. and Columbus, Ohio -- get 10% off their check by showing their valid student ID in the restaurant or using promo code “10STUDENTS” when ordering online or in the app.
The initiative, Outback’s first NIL endorsement program, was developed by the brand marketing division of Excel Sports Management, which advised on lead talent procurement and campaign execution, which includes a dedicated microsite.
Starting Saturday, Outback Steakhouse will also make donations of meals to military families in need through Operation Homefront. The players will also dine with teammates and host local give back nights at select Outback Steakhouse locations to raise money for their favorite charities.
The fast casual restaurant will continue to build the program with additional male and female college athletes during the winter and spring sports seasons and is calling for all eligible student athletes to apply for consideration at www.outback.com/teammates. Selected athletes will receive Outback Steakhouse gift cards and TeamMates-branded merchandise.
Starting in November, consumers can enter a sweepstakes for a VIP trip to the Outback Bowl in Tampa, Florida.