OMAHA (DTN) -- A screenshot of two Iowa State Cyclones players on the field -- Tommy Hamann and Caleb Bacon -- went viral on X, formerly known as Twitter, in early September and caught the attention of the Iowa Pork Producers Association.
On Monday, the Iowa Pork Producers Association announced Hamann, Bacon and two additional players -- Myles Purchase and Tyler Moore -- have entered an NIL (name, image, likeness) deal with the association to support the pork industry.
The "Purchase Moore Hamann Bacon" marketing campaign aims to encourage Iowans to buy more pork -- more specifically, ham and bacon.
"After the 'Hamann Bacon' photo went viral on social media following the Cyclones' season opener, we knew we had to jump on this opportunity," Trish Cook, president of the Iowa Pork Producers Association, stated in a news release. "These four young men are not only great football players; they also have strong academic records and great last names! We couldn't be more excited to work with them in this fun initiative to publicize Iowa pork."
The promotion is part of National Pork Month in October. Throughout the month, the Iowa Pork Producers Association plans to run ads on social media featuring the four players in their football jerseys surrounded by Iowa pork.
In conjunction with the NIL partnership, the Iowa Pork Producers Association will donate $1,000 of pork to each player's food pantry of choice.
"Iowa pork producers and pig farmers care about their communities, and while this partnership is a fun way to promote our industry, it's also one way we can give back," Cook stated in the release. "Food insecurity remains an issue for many people, and we're glad to partner with these Cyclone football players to help their local food pantries."
Myles Purchase, Tyler Moore and Caleb Bacon were all named to the Academic All-Big 12 First Team in 2022. Tommy Hamann was named to the Big 12 Commissioner's Honor Roll in 2022. The Iowa Pork Producers Association stated it is pleased to work with these student-athletes to promote pork and the work of Iowa pig farmers while aiding local communities.
"It's something unique and it feels good to be able to do something for a good cause," Cyclones defensive back Myles Purchase, a junior from Denver, Colorado, said in the news release.
When the picture of Tommy Hamann and Caleb Bacon together on the field went viral on social media, the players had several friends share the photo with them.
"I think it's just hilarious being able to use (the) play on words on our last names in a super clever way to promote Iowa pork, and it's just an all-around great opportunity to bring us all together," Hamann, a red-shirt freshman defensive end for the Iowa State Cyclones, stated in the news release.
Caleb Bacon has heard jokes about his last name for much of his life, according to the news release. "People said I should take advantage of it, and it just came to fruition in that picture. I think it's just good for our teammates and I'd like to thank the Iowa pork producers for the opportunity." Bacon is a sophomore linebacker from Lake Mills, Iowa.
Iowa is the top pork-producing state in the U.S., and nearly 150,000 Iowans are employed by the pork industry.
The viral post on X can be found here: https://twitter.com/….
Susan Payne can be reached at email@example.com
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