Mohegan Sun Won’t Gamble on Penn State Football

Casino pulls ads from PSU's Beaver Stadium

Mohegan Sun has taken its money off the table in concerns to Penn State this fall, following State Farm as the second known brand to cut ties with the university’s football program. The Uncasville, Conn.-based casino firm told Adweek today that its Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs location will no longer advertise in the school’s cavernous Beaver Stadium.

“We have…terminated our sponsorship with them,” a Mohegan Sun rep said in an email.

Penn State, which hosts Ohio University tomorrow in its season opener, had the worst branding moment in college sports history when the Freeh Report eviscerated the school on July 12. Documents from the investigation allege that PSU’s legendary football coach Joe Paterno and university president Graham Spanier failed to report now-convicted pedophile Jerry Sandusky to the police, even though they—according to the Freeh Report—had adequate information about Sandusky’s acts of sexual child abuse.

Less than two weeks after the report went public, State Farm cancelled its 20-year relationship with Penn State football as a radio and in-stadium sponsor. But local advertisers are remaining loyal to the university.

Weis Markets, a Sunbury, Penn.-based grocery chain, and Pittsburgh insurer Highmark tell Adweek that their longstanding advertising relationships with Penn State will continue.

"We're still involved with PSU Athletics, including football, as we were in 2011 and remain the official supermarket of Penn State Athletics," Dennis Curtin, public relations rep with Weis Markets, said today via email. "As part of this sponsorship, we have promotions planned for 2012 and beyond."

And Leilyn Perri, communications director for Highmark, said in an email: "As the state’s largest health insurer, Highmark’s partnership with Penn State is about health and wellness. We do have a sponsorship with the athletics program. While we routinely evaluate all of our sponsorships, we plan to continue at this time."