CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (Sept. 22, 2021) – Carolina Athletics and its multimedia rightsholder, LEARFIELD’s Tar Heel Sports Properties, have extended their relationship with longtime partner Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (Blue Cross NC).
As part of the multi-year agreement, the official health insurance partner of Carolina Athletics has enhanced its commitment to women’s athletics. Blue Cross NC has new and significant brand visibility with entitlement to the Pavilion hospitality area at Dorrance Field – home to Carolina’s Soccer and Lacrosse programs. Blue Cross NC will also serve as presenting sponsor for the Carolina Women’s Basketball season and for the National Girls & Women in Sports Day celebrated annually during the first week of February.
In addition, Blue Cross NC will be integral in the development of a new social media series for Carolina fans that focuses on empowering and coaching female student-athletes and inspiring the next generation of leaders. The series will feature interviews with the head coaches of UNC’s women’s teams and be amplified through official athletics platforms.
"By strengthening our commitment to women in sports, we're championing increased opportunity for women everywhere," said Reagan Greene Pruitt, Vice President of Marketing and Community Engagement at Blue Cross NC. “This continued collaboration with Carolina Athletics celebrates the importance of gender equity in sports and focuses on inspiring our future leaders.”
“Carolina Athletics is proud to continue our partnership with Blue Cross NC,” said Robbi Pickeral Evans, Carolina Associate Athletic Director for Strategic and External Communications. “Blue Cross NC shares our commitment to strong health and wellbeing -- and its emphasis on empowering female student-athletes comes at a perfect time, as we celebrate 50 years of Carolina Women’s Athletics this year. We look forward to continuing to work together to support college athletics and student-athletes.”
On September 23, Blue Cross NC will be hosting UNC soccer alumna, Mia Hamm, at the Carolina vs. Virginia Tech women’s soccer game. Hamm played for the Tar Heels from 1989-1993, red-shirting in 1991 to prepare for and play in the first-ever Women’s World Cup in China, which the United States won. Hamm led the Tar Heels to four NCAA championships and finished her collegiate career as a two-time National Player of the Year and the NCAA career scoring leader with 278 points on 103 goals and 72 assists.
She was named the Greatest Female Athlete in the ACC’s first 50 Years, ESPN’s No. 1 Athlete of the Title IX era and one of two women’s soccer players named to the FIFA 100 (Greatest Living Players) as selected by Pelé in 2004. A two-time FIFA World Player of the Year, she ended her international career as the world’s all-time leading scorer in women’s soccer history with 158 goals, 145 assists and 461 points. She held the all-time FIFA goals record (for men and women) from 2004 to 2013.
Hamm will be signing autographs at halftime in the Blue Cross NC Pavilion. Due to Covid protocols, no personal items or pictures with Hamm will be allowed. Hamm will sign autograph cards on site. Tickets to the game are available and can be purchased at GoHeels.com/tickets.
The University of North Carolina, the nation’s first public university, offers 28 intercollegiate sports and is a founding member of the Atlantic Coast Conference. The Tar Heels have won 55 national championships, 216 ACC tournament championships and 264 regular-season ACC titles. The department’s mission: to educate and inspire through athletics.
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (Blue Cross NC) is committed to making health care better, simpler and more affordable. We have been driving better health in North Carolina since 1933, working to tackle our communities’ greatest health challenges. Blue Cross NC serves its customers and communities of more than 4.2 million members, including approximately 1.1 million on behalf of other Blue Plans. Blue Cross NC is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Visit Blue Cross NC online at www.bluecrossnc.com. All other marks are the property of their respective owners.
Tar Heel Sports Properties is the locally based LEARFIELD team representing Carolina Athletics. LEARFIELD is a leading media and technology services company in intercollegiate athletics. The company unlocks the value of college sports for brands and fans through an omnichannel platform with innovative content and commerce solutions. LEARFIELD services includes licensing and multimedia sponsorship management; publishing, audio, digital and social media; data analytics; ticketing, ticket sales and professional concessions expertise; branding; campus-wide business and sponsorship development; and venue technology systems. Since 2008, it has served as title sponsor for the acclaimed LEARFIELD Directors’ Cup, supporting athletic departments across all divisions.