Remember the days when you watched your favorite sports figure hold a title belt over his head to the roars of a sell out crowd? Well Marshall is bringing that back in a sense by having some championship-type belts made as part of a new incentive program.
We're not talking about your typical plastic championship belts that are for show though. These are the real deal, custom made and nickel and gold-plated by designer Rico Mann who makes the belts for the WWE, UFC, and NFL programs.
The four belts that Mann made for the program weigh in at 8-pounds each and cost about $7,000, according to the West Virginia-Gazette, and the coaching staff will use them as incentives, or to draw attention for big plays or special on offense, defense, special teams, and in the weight room.
The Marshall logo adorns the middle of the belt flanked on one side by a helmet with the number 75 on it, signifying the number of people that died on November 14th, 1970 in the now infamous crash of Southern Airways flight 932. On the other side is a traditional Marshall helmet. Those plates are flanked by goals that the Marshall football program has under Doc Holliday like toughness, protect the ball, and flip the field.
In the article, Mann notes that he's designed belts like these for 15 years, and can only remember one other college program (Michigan) who has had belts like these made before. Most of the orders come from wrestling, ultimate fighting, and professional sports teams.
I'm not sure if today's generation of kids shared the same dream, but I know that growing up hoisting a championship belt over your head was something that nearly every kid dreamed of, whether you were a professional wrestling fan or not, growing up and watching guys like Mike Tyson, or Evander Holyfield hoist the belt over their head dripping with sweat was something special.
Marshall is bringing back that same nostalgia with these belts.