Editorial: TCF Bank didn’t donate a dime

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, July 11, 2006

It’s sad enough that the new football stadium for the Golden Gophers, where unpaid amateur athletes play, has a corporate logo splashed all over it. But it is a slap in the face when university administrators to call it a donation.

Why don’t they just call it what it really is? A purchase.

For $35 million, TCF Financial Corp. gets more than its name on the football stadium. It gets the names of the season ticket holders &045;&160;all 236,300 of them &045; so it can market financial items to them. The TCF Bank Stadium logo will be omnipresent when the stadium opens in 2009 &045; tickets, uniforms, vehicles, menus. TCF Bank gets a leg up for on-campus banking. The coach, the cheerleaders and Goldy Gopher will appear at TCF events. TCF gets a sweet suite at all games.

The university will pay to fly four people for TCF to one of Minnesota’s away games each year.

According to TCF Bank Minnesota President Mark Jeter, the perks were offered by the university and not requested by TCF. Still, a purchase is a purchase. The university said here are the goods. TCF plopped down the cash.

It’s not a donation, that’s for sure.

Oh yeah, the players. Remember them? They are the reason people go to games. Out of the $35 million, they get zip.