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Colts, Texas A&M reach settlement over “12th Man” trademark

COLLEGE STATION, TX - NOVEMBER 28:  Texas A&M University Aggies fans, sometimes referred to as the 12th Man, stand during the game against the University of Texas at Austin Longhorns, at Kyle Field on November 28, 2003 in College Station, Texas.  The Texas Longhorns won 46-15.  (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images) Getty Images

Texas A&M University has reached another agreement with an NFL over team over infringement of their trademark of the “12th Man.”

According to the Associated Press, the university reached an agreement with the Indianapolis Colts over use of the “12th Man” trademark that belongs to Texas A&M.

The university said in a statement that the lawsuit brought by Texas A&M last year “has been settled amicably and with good will.”

Texas A&M had successfully upheld their trademark in a suit against the Seattle Seahawks as well. The Seahawks agreement allowed the team to use the phrase with notation that the phrase is a trademark of Texas A&M. It’s not a surprise that in recent seasons the Seahawks have moved away from “12th Man” and toward just using “12s” as a moniker for their fans.

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32 Responses to “Colts, Texas A&M reach settlement over “12th Man” trademark”
  1. sportnik2 says: Feb 17, 2016 11:48 PM

    In 2016, the Colts will proudly unveil their “Amicably Settled Lawsuit with A&M” banner to acknowledge their crowning achievement of the 2015 season.

  2. jerry944 says: Feb 17, 2016 11:53 PM

    There were no seahawk fans up until 2012…so calling them the 12s is very fitting

  3. PFT-made-me-change-my-handle says: Feb 18, 2016 12:07 AM

    So the Seahawks are going from unoriginal and lame to unoriginal and lamer.

  4. joenash72 says: Feb 18, 2016 12:08 AM

    Texas A&M needs it for their boy, Billy Football.

    “How many drinks have you had, Johnny?”

    “12th Man”😉

  5. icallbs81 says: Feb 18, 2016 12:24 AM

    I prefer they stick with the 1-2s.

  6. jssebastian2014 says: Feb 18, 2016 12:29 AM

    They can use all their settlement money to pay for the inevitable lawsuits over Johnny Football in the future.

  7. theheyseed says: Feb 18, 2016 1:15 AM

    and that 12’s bandwagon is already almost empty.
    The silence is beautiful.

  8. dreadnok89 says: Feb 18, 2016 1:36 AM

    My word this country is getting silly

  9. johnniemayes says: Feb 18, 2016 5:04 AM

    Ridiculous trademark. Who cares.

  10. driftw00d says: Feb 18, 2016 7:24 AM

    Have they settled with the estate of The Three Stooges for the use of the Griff Whalen trick play?

  11. pastabelly says: Feb 18, 2016 7:34 AM

    The PC movement has filed a lawsuit and now the Colts will refer to their fans as the “12 Person” so as not to offend women or transgendered.

  12. lrical says: Feb 18, 2016 8:34 AM

    And when Norte dame played at the sun bowl they came after a local high school for using their fighting Irish logo….allegedly so it happens.

  13. intrafinesse says: Feb 18, 2016 9:18 AM

    The Kansas City Chiefs have the loudest fans (142.2 decibels on Sept 2014), so they should use the name “the 13th man” since the other teams QB can’t be heard, it’s like having *2* extra defensive players on the field.

  14. mack2x says: Feb 18, 2016 9:20 AM

    When teams start talking trademarks, I”d start using a different term.

  15. magnumpimustache says: Feb 18, 2016 9:29 AM

    You remember when anything Seattle had a 100 comments.

    I like that normalcy has come back to PFT

  16. floratiotime says: Feb 18, 2016 9:53 AM

    Does this mean the Seahawks will be pumping artificial noise into the stadium again? I miss all those false start penalties they used to pretend were due to crowd noise.

  17. excusemewhileiwhipthisoutagain says: Feb 18, 2016 10:33 AM

    What is really pathetic is Seattle fans calling each other “12” or “12s”.

  18. crush22 says: Feb 18, 2016 10:38 AM

    sportnik2 says:
    Feb 17, 2016 11:48 PM
    In 2016, the Colts will proudly unveil their “Amicably Settled Lawsuit with A&M” banner to acknowledge their crowning achievement of the 2015 season.
    _______________
    ZZZzzzzzzzz…………………

  19. 700levelvet says: Feb 18, 2016 10:51 AM

    Only thing more annoying is…. “team name here” nation…

  20. turtlehut says: Feb 18, 2016 11:36 AM

    700levelvet says:
    Feb 18, 2016 10:51 AM
    Only thing more annoying is…. “team name here” nation…

    ———————-

    It is what it is

  21. seahawks365 says: Feb 18, 2016 12:14 PM

    I believe Mike B is upset about the deal his agent got him, he is by far worth nearly twice what his contract is… PFF ranked him second only to JJ Watt last year! He’s paid in the bottom 20 of D-linemen, and his time is running short for making any more money! I think the Hawks need to address his contract, even with two years remaining, I believe that EVERYONE on the team knows his value, and wouldn’t have the slightest bit of a problem with him getting a raise or even a new contract altogether!!! I sincerely hope they don’t take advantage of him again this year and do the right thing! GO HAWKS!!!

  22. In Teddy We Trust says: Feb 18, 2016 12:19 PM

    Maybe these teams could come up with an original marketing bit rather than having to pay others to use the same thing.

  23. hawkitrond says: Feb 18, 2016 12:50 PM

    I live in Central Washington, I’m 36 and haven’t missed a Seahawks game since I was probably 5, and in that time every sports fan I know and conversate with around here have been Seahawk fans just as long, right out of the gate we we’re fun to watch with Largent/Zorn and Kreig/largent/warner and then unfortunately watching Norm Johnson blow it for us more often than not, then we were finally rewarded again with the Hasselbeck/Alexander regime, Seahawk football has always been something that has connected my family and community, something everyone can discuss around here and everytime I was lucky enough to go see a game either in the Kingdome or qwest/c-link it was always packed to the brim so I don’t know why it has become so popular to throw out the 2012’s comments and the bandwagon fans comments but they are really stupid inaccurate comments, I made a profile just so I could say that because it’s frustrating to see people throw dumb crap out there that is just so not true.

  24. jay8173 says: Feb 18, 2016 12:51 PM

    Texas A&M copyright on “12th Man” has been around for many, many years……it generates a lot of money for the school. There a lot of folks in Seattle that were very upset when the Seahawks had to let it go, not because A&M made them but because the the Seahawks didn’t want to pay for it. the Colts went down the same path but saw the handwriting on the wall and decided to just pay the piper (Aggies). So at the end of it, all I have to say is GIG’EM AGS!!! #YESSIR

  25. jmethane says: Feb 18, 2016 1:22 PM

    This is an article about the colts, yet there is way more hate towards Seattle here.

    Shows you where the two franchises are. Nobody really hates the Colts other than pats fans. They haven’t beaten anyone lately.

    Maybe Andrew luck will live up to expectations next year?

  26. seahawksbmx says: Feb 18, 2016 3:21 PM

    floratiotime
    Feb 18, 2016, 6:53 AM PST
    Does this mean the Seahawks will be pumping artificial noise into the stadium again? I miss all those false start penalties they used to pretend were due to crowd noise.
    ————-
    Remember how the pretend crowd noise created the errant snap to begin Super Bowl 48, giving the Seahawks a safety 12 seconds into the game?
    And remember how the Jets and Giants fans’ message boards were filled with, “Gee, why can’t WE be that loud at MetLife” threads in the days following that game?
    Remember that? That was awesome.

  27. rukkus1 says: Feb 19, 2016 4:28 AM

    99% of the article is about the Coltsand the Aggies .

    99% of the comments are about the Seahawks endearing and spiteful.

    Man it feels good to be a Hawks fan.

  28. digitalsasquatch says: Feb 19, 2016 10:48 AM

    Does this mean the Seahawks will be pumping artificial noise into the stadium again? I miss all those false start penalties they used to pretend were due to crowd noise.

    _______________

    “Whhaaa…their team’s been better than mine for a few years, so I’ll call them bandwagoners and accuse them of pumping noise in.”

    1. A&M didn’t invent the 12th Man: they were just the first to trademark it. And there’s a reason that the Aggie Joke Book remains on the top of Texas’ Bestseller list.

    2. Seahawks retired number 12 in 1984…so there miiiiight have been just a few of us fans around before 2012…maybe. Just sayin’. The only bandwagon is the bandwagon bandwagon you’re jumping on.

    3. No noise pumped in: that only happened in Atlanta…and probably Foxboro. The Clink is just a stadium designed to resonate, and Seahawks fans know how to make it work to the team’s advantage. The false starts continue unabated…even after the NFL tested the place and found no wrongdoing.

    You guys seriously need to get some new material.

  29. Sinuous Sausage says: Feb 20, 2016 8:11 AM

    Maybe your daddy did take you to the Seahawks game when you were five, which would make you about nine-years-old now. Given the quality of the Seahawk fan posts, that seems about right

    The reason the Seahawks had to litigate this is obviously due to the fact they had no football fans until recently. If they had, they would’ve known not to appropriate a marketing slogan that had already been in existence for decades

  30. drswaggletooth says: Feb 23, 2016 6:31 PM

    The reason the Seahawks had to litigate this is obviously due to the fact they had no football fans until recently. If they had, they would’ve known not to appropriate a marketing slogan that had already been in existence for decades.

    ———————————————-

    The most ignorant of NFL fans still remain just that. Three super bowl appearances between 2005 and 2015, who had more…but yet no fans until 2012…ignorance is bliss.

  31. bocabob12 says: Feb 28, 2016 10:07 AM

    Retired & respected, honoring the 12’s. The impact of Seattle fans had such an impact on the success of the team in the 1980’s that Seahawks President Mike McCormack retired the number 12 jersey on December 15, 1984 forever. A tribute to the best fans in the NFL…..

    In January 2006, Texas A&M filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against the Seattle Seahawks and in May 2006, the dispute was settled out of court. Neither side admitted any fault or liability. In the agreement, the Seahawks licensed the phrase in exchange for $100,000, along with public acknowledgement as to Texas A&M’s ownership rights of the phrase, and an additional annual fee. The compensation amounted to $5,000 per year. The agreement, which expired in 2016, limited the Seahawks’ usage to seven western states and forbid them from selling any “12th Man” merchandise. In August 2015, the Seahawks shifted towards calling their fans the “12s”, and replaced their “Home of the 12th Man” stadium sign with a new “Home of the 12s” sign.

  32. bocabob12 says: Feb 28, 2016 10:33 AM

    The term has been used by various American football teams including the University of Minnesota, the University of Iowa, Baylor University, Dartmouth College, Simmons College, Texas A&M and the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks, Green Bay Packers, Buffalo Bills, Denver Broncos, Washington Redskins, Indianapolis Colts, Miami Dolphins, and Chicago Bears in marketing practices in reference to their supporters….

    Texas A&M University applied on December 26, 1989, for trademark U.S. Ser. No. 74013898 related to usage of the term. The United States Patent and Trademark Office issued the “trademark registration” September 4, 1990, to Texas A&M. Four additional Trademark claims related to the “12th Man” term were also filed and granted at later dates by Texas A&M University …

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