The White Sox and the University of Illinois announced a partnership for 2012 on Wednesday, with the Sox hosting "Illini Night" at U.S. Cellular Field June 1 against Seattle. White Sox senior VP of marketing Brooks Boyer sees the partnership as strengthening the organization's bond with Champaign-Urbana.
"There are a lot of sports fans in the Chicago area, Central Illinois and Northwest Indiana who root for the Fighting Illini and the White Sox, Boyer said in a statement released by the team. To build a bridge between Champaign and Chicago, bringing the fan bases together, makes sense as we both open our gates to allow more fans to enjoy our games."
This partnership could benefit Illinois a whole lot more than the White Sox, though, when it comes to athletic recruiting.
We feel this will increase Illinois exposure in Chicago," athletic director Mike Thomas said, adding that it will "allow some great opportunities for fans to experience exciting baseball at U.S. Cellular Field.
With a new football coach and presumably a new basketball coach for the next academic year, perhaps this partnership will somehow help them make in-roads in the Chicagoland area.