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Screening results
Local printers gear up for Big 12 championship to appease Sooner fans

By Sara Ganus Modified: December 3, 2007 at 4:16 pm •  Published: December 1, 2007

metimes they're 12-hour shifts.”

In the past, Hard Edge — a subcontractor for Nike and Reebok — has printed up to 80,000 units for national championship events, like the Sugar Bowl, Final Four and the national championship.

Every time, the stakes are high.

"In (the 2003-2004 season), when OU played (Louisiana State University), we had a substantial investment for OU,” Melton said. "If we had not had a contract with LSU, we would have lost quite a sum of money because of all the prep-work we had to do.

"It's a gamble, but it's well worth it because if they win, you win big. If they lose, you lose.”

Retail stores, like Store Divided, which sells OU and OSU merchandise, will pick up orders at midnight following the game to get merchandise on the floor for the next business day.

Andrew Macias, a Store Divided partner, said he's hoping for an OU win to boost holiday sales.

"That's the fortunate thing about the bowl games and Big 12 Championship,” he said. "They are centered around the holiday season.”

With the bowl announcements on Sunday, USA Screen Printing plans to open that morning and do the same thing all over again. The company has already submitted between 18 and 20 designs to six possible bowl games.

"All last week we've played out every single scenario,” said Matt Cartwright, a graphic designer for USA. "If they win here, if they lost here, where do they go? Where would they go if Kansas loses and Missouri wins? We've played that out and tried to cover our bases.”

Charlene Ramey, USA's general manager of production, said in just three years, collegiate merchandise has increased to 30 percent of the company's sales — up from 10 percent in 2004.

"What we've seen is a change in the market,” she said.

"When we started doing collegiate, basically what we did was short-sleeve, long-sleeve and sweatshirts, and that was unisex. What we've done now is made apparel for the whole family, so you can come in and have infant, toddler, youth, men's and ladies ... Now we're meeting that market of what people really want.”