As millions of fans hunker down on the couch with a buffet of finger food to watch Sunday’s Super Bowl; a local clothing company hopes to catch a glimpse of the sidelines.
That’s because the Denver Broncos’ cheerleading squad will sport waterproof jackets designed and put together in Saskatoon at MEE Sports.
“We’re one of Saskatoon’s best kept secrets,” Peter Wills, manager of MEE Sports said.
Shortly after topping the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship game on Jan. 24, the Denver Broncos’ cheerleading coach put in an order for 32 jackets in case rain was in the forecast for the Super Bowl.
Wills said he had to call in the entire production team and pull a handful of 12-hour days to complete the order in time for Sunday.
“We’re hoping for rain … and we’ll absolutely be watching the game and cheering for the Broncos,” Wills said, adding Denver is the 13th NFL team he’s supplied gear too. MEE Sports also outfits CFL teams including the B.C. Lions, Edmonton Eskimos and the Saskatchewan Roughriders.
The secret? Wills said it’s how they produce the jackets through a process they call sublimation, where they infuse the colour and logos directly into the material, creating a sharp design without compromising the outer shell of the jacket.
Wills said it seems to be working as his business has exploded in the past five years, with many American cheerleading clubs coming on board, plus the pro sports teams.
“We’re starting to get a reputation of people knowing us especially for the waterproof rain jackets,” Wills said. “The NFL cheerleaders circle is a small one and once you get your foot in the door and you provide a good product then it does get known by the other teams quickly.”
At $135 per jacket, the referral system is working wonders for Wills’ business. With Seattle on board for about four years now, if Denver wins the Super Bowl, Wills will have provided sports clothes for two Super Bowl-winning teams.