Barons to become Nike club in '08

PDL team to debut new kits on May 11

The South Jersey Barons have entered into an agreement with Nike and Ewing Sports to be the official partner and apparel supplier for the club. Fans will be introduced to the new look this summer when the Ocean City Barons Premier Development League (PDL) team will debut the new kits on May 11 when they host the Newark Ironbound Express at Carey Stadium at 7:30 p.m.

After the PDL team’s season concludes in August, the rest of the Barons organization will be wearing "the swoosh" on their jerseys, bags, and shirts.

"It was a club-wide decision that we should seek the best uniforms available to match the success the club has seen over the years, said Ocean City Barons general manager Neil Holloway. "As a club, we have never been stronger, so becoming a Nike club was a natural step."

The organization have signed a four-year deal with Nike, who will replace Hummell as the club’s apparel brand. Ewing Sports, who have been servicing the soccer community for over 20 years, will help facilitate that relationship.

Nike will also promote the South Jersey Barons internally for access to other partner functions, including Premier Club events where appropriate, and will assist the Barons with access to Nike partners and promote synergies between Mid-Atlantic clubs.

"I think this is a product of the club’s continued success and growth on and off the field," said Cliff Simmons, the South Jersey Barons Youth Club President. "This arrangement will not only provide us with a greater variety of equipment and apparel but also give us access to additional competition and exposure for our players. It is an exciting time for the club and we are happy to share the excitement with a worldwide brand such as Nike."

The Barons join an impressive list of clubs around the globe who display the Nike logo on their jerseys, such as the United States and Brazilian national teams, Manchester United, Arsenal, Barcelona, Juventus, Inter Milan, and Celtic.

About the Ocean City Barons

The Ocean City Barons are a minor league soccer franchise that plays in the Premier Development League (PDL) -- the top men’s amateur league in North America. The PDL is considered the 4th level of soccer in the United States below Major League Soccer, and the United Soccer League’s First and Second Divisions. Players have the ability to compete in the PDL throughout the summer months in a professionalized setting while maintaining their collegiate eligibility. The league is the proving ground for players that aspire to reach the highest levels of the game, while providing affordable family entertainment to the Ocean City community.

Founded in 1997, the Barons are entering their 12th year of existence in 2008 and are one of the winningest PDL clubs in North America. Since joining the league in 2003, they hold an outstanding record of 52-16-16, the 5th best record among the more than 60 teams in the league. Since joining the league, 16 former Barons have moved on to play professional soccer.

They continued their tradition of success on the field in 2007 when they qualified for the PDL playoffs and the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, marking the third time in the last four years the club had achieved both in the same season. The highlight of the 2007 campaign came in the First Round of the Open Cup when they upset Crystal Palace Baltimore, a professional team from the United Soccer League’s Second Division, 1-0 on June 26 at Carey Stadium in Ocean City.

The schedule for the Barons’ 2008 season has been released. Click here to view it.