Texas A&M announced on Friday that the university has reached a new five-year licensing agreement with the Seattle Seahawks regarding the NFL team’s use of the “12th Man” trademark.
Under provisions of the new 5-year agreement, use of “12th Man” on the Ring of Honor in the Seahawks’ stadium will no longer occur, nor will there be any references to “12th Man” in social media by the Seahawks franchise, Texas A&M officials announced.
Texas A&M & @Seahawks reach new license agreement for #12thMan trademark: https://t.co/aevg9J9aMz #tamu— Texas A&M University (@TAMU) August 11, 2016
While Seattle will continue to pay an annual royalty fee (previously around $5,000 per year), the new agreement is said to be primarily for “incidental use” as it relates to the team’s fan base. The Seahawks have made a visible effort to re-brand their fans as “the 12s” in recent years to distinguish them from “the 12th Man.” You can see these changes on social media as well as within the stadium itself.
Under 40 days until kickoff, you ready @12s? #SeahawksCountdown pic.twitter.com/brZ3syjdB4— Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) August 3, 2016
Seattle Seahawks have dropped "Home of the 12th Man", now "Home of the 12s": http://t.co/EoUDcKV5L1 #GigEm pic.twitter.com/yeUpFOBm3v— RedditCFB (@RedditCFB) August 15, 2015
Texas A&M first reach a licensing agreement with the Seahawks in 2006, which was renewed in 2011. You can read the details of those previous agreements here. The university has also reached similar agreements with the Buffalo Bills and Indianapolis Colts regarding their use of the term inside their stadiums.
If you really feel like educating yourself on the subject, take some time to read GBH’s previous work on the history of the 12th Man at Texas A&M as well as our 12th Man Q&A with A&M’s Shane Hinckley.