Highly-touted defensive end rookie prospect Jadeveon Clowney from South Carolina signed an endorsement deal with Puma, per ESPN.
Jadeveon Clowney is now officially a Puma endorser.
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ESPN's Darren Rovell reports terms of the deal were not disclosed in his May 7 update:
"The projected No. 1 overall pick for Thursday's NFL draft, South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney, has signed an endorsement deal with Puma. Terms were not disclosed.
"'I just want to be part of something different,' Clowney told ESPN.com on Wednesday night. 'Why not change it up?'
"Because Puma doesn't have a deal with the NFL, Clowney can't wear cleats with the Puma logo on the field. But the defensive end, who is expected to be picked by the Houston Texans, will be a big part of the company's upcoming marketing plans.
"'He represents everything we are and the consumer we are trying to attract,' said Jay Piccola, president of Puma North America, who presented Clowney with custom snakeskin Puma shoes valued at $2,500.'
"Piccola said the best part about Clowney is that 'he's already a known brand to consumers and retailers alike.'
"Clowney is most associated with his explosive hit on Michigan running back Vincent Smith in the closing moments of the Outback Bowl following the 2012 season, but Clowney says he knows that in order to be marketable, he has to perform well in the NFL.
"'I'm going to carry my name as far as I can,' said Clowney, who also has signed a draft-week deal with Gillette and longer-term deals with New Era and Wilson. 'I'll have a new hit for you, too. Stay tuned. It's going to come.'"
On the possibility of Clowney being the draft's top overall pick by the Texans, he would not divulge anything to USA TODAY's Jarrett Bell.
Clowney quipped,"I'm not saying. I'm just waiting."
However, Clowney did tell Yahoo! Sports Dan Wetzel that Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck, who led his team to the 2013 AFC South division title, should watch out should he be drafted by Houston and is eventually paired up with J.J. Watt.
Wetzel tweeted,"Clowney said if he gets to team up with JJ Watt then Andrew Luck,'better have his head on a swivel.'"
Clowney also told NFL.com's Chase Goodbread during the NFL Play 60 Youth Football Festival at Chelsea Waterside Park in New York City on May 7 that Watt would be an ideal role model should he become a Texan.
"That'd be great. I always watched him play when I was in college. Being right beside (Watt) would be even better. He's like a role model to me -- I look up to him when I watch him play."
Rovell also notes Clowney joins the likes of Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson, New England Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman and Kansas City Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles as the league's other Puma endorsers.
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