The tweet announcing the agreement between “America’s Team” and “America’s Coffee” drew about 200 comments in the primary few hours, most of them critical and suggesting the timing of the announcement was poor.
“Possibly read the room a bit, guys,” one person posted, while one other wrote, “The Dallas Cowboys just lost one in all their biggest fans. Integrity matters.”
The Cowboys declined comment.
The tweet links to a contest offering two tickets to a Cowboys home game and a one-year subscription to the coffee company. Many of the company’s sales are direct to consumer.
Black Rifle was founded by U.S. Army veteran Evan Hafer, who has made support of veterans one in all the tenets of his company.
“BRCC is proud to partner with the Dallas Cowboys, who’re strongly committed to our mission of supporting veterans, first responders, and America’s men and ladies in uniform,” a Black Rifle spokesman said. “The long-planned announcement was timed to coincide with the Independence Day holiday — America’s Team. America’s Coffee. America’s Birthday.”
Response to the marketing agreement suggests a “split identification amongst fans” of the Cowboys, based on T. Bettina Cornwell, academic director of the University of Oregon’s Warsaw Sports Marketing Center.
“For those against gun violence, there isn’t any good timing,” Cornwell said in an email. “The business query is, ‘Have the Cowboys made a misstep when it comes to their relationship with their more moderate fans?’”
Cowboys owner Jerry Jones’ steadfast support of the military was best illustrated when he was probably the most outspoken NFL owners against players kneeling during The Star-Spangled Banner before games to protest racial injustice and police brutality.
The Black Rifle brand has been popular amongst conservatives and gun-rights advocates, and the Salt Lake City-based company has ties to Texas. The primary brick-and-mortar store opened in San Antonio, where the corporate has a second corporate office.