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WUSF's coverage of Super Bowl LV at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa on Feb. 7, 2021.

Buccaneers Merchandise Sales Boosted By Super Bowl Appearance

Bucs merchandise at Tampa Internationa Airport
Tampa International Airport
Tampa Bay Buccaneers merchandise is already on sale at Tampa International Airport, where the merchandise of the Super Bowl-winning team will go on sale immediately after Sunday's game.

As Tampa Bay prepares for the Super Bowl, local businesses are bracing themselves for a boom in Buccaneers merchandise sales.

As excitement builds for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ upcoming appearance in Super Bowl LV in their home stadium, sales of team merchandise continue to skyrocket.

It’s actually a continuation of activity that started with a pair of major deals in 2020.

“As soon as we acquired (quarterback) Tom Brady, and (tight end) Rob Gronkowski especially, we saw a huge uptick in interest and excitement,” said Derek Miller, Chief Marketing Officer of Tampa-based t-shirt company Smack Apparel.

That demand has continued to grow with each Bucs’ victory.

Football player wearing mask and t-shirt adjusts tape on his wrist
Smack Apparel
Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Shaquil "Shaq" Barrett wears a Smack Apparel t-shirt depicting Bucs head coach Bruce Arians as the team's previous mascot, "Bucco Bruce."

“Over the past week since they've won (the NFC Championship), we've sold just over 1,500 (pieces) across all of our Buccaneers gear,” said Miller.

“We're up about 25% this January over January 2020. So (it) definitely has been a positive trend, especially since we've moved a lot of our operations online.”

Miller adds that the company is preparing championship gear in the hopes of a Super Bowl win.

Other retailers are making similar plans -- which in some cases includes the possibility of a Kansas City Chiefs’ victory.

“The moment the game ends, we actually have boxes (of merchandise) in stock,” said Tampa International Airport spokeswoman Emily Nipps.

“Each team will be listed as the champion until we find out who the actual winner is. And then they will open up the box with the winners and ship off the boxes (to airport retailers).”

“We will be one of the few places you can buy those shirts and hats and merchandise right after the game ends.”

Nipps said the gear will be sold in the Tampa Bay Sports store in the main terminal, while the nearby PGA Tour Shops may have higher-end merchandise for the winning team as well.

Leali Shalabi is a WUSF/ USF Zimmerman School digital news intern for the spring of 2021.
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