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Details On The Tom Jurich Maker's Mark Bottle

I would have preferred for him to be wearing a cape, but I'm not going to get greedy.

Streeter Lecka

U of L press release:

Commemorative bottles of a premium bourbon featuring University of Louisville Vice President/Director of Athletics Tom Jurich will go on sale late this week to aid in fundraising efforts for a new academic center on the Cardinals' campus.

Special commemorative bottles of Maker's Mark®, a handmade bourbon produced in Loretto, Ky., feature a unique bottle design depicting Jurich's image and the logo for the Atlantic Coast Conference, the prestigious league which the Cardinals officially joined on July 1, 2014.

Proceeds from the sales of the 8,500 bottles, which will be on retail store shelves on Friday, July 25, will go toward the U of L Academic Center of Excellence, a $14 million, state-of-the-art facility that will be built on the Cardinals' campus. Over the past three years, sales of commemorative Maker's Mark bottles have generated $2.5 million for the project.

"We've been proud to support the efforts to make the Academic Center of Excellence a reality," said Maker's Mark Chief Operating Officer Rob Samuels. "We selected Tom Jurich to be featured on the final bottle in the series because he has truly brought the entire athletic department to a new level of achievement. U of L athletics play a huge role not only in the lives of student athletes but also in shaping our entire community, and clearly Tom's leadership has been nothing short of remarkable."

"Maker's Mark is an icon in Kentucky," said Jurich. "The support we have had from the Samuels family through the years has been terrific.  Their partnership has been extraordinary for the academic center, which could be the most important facility we have built on this campus.  It means so much to us to have a company with the prestige and tradition of Maker's Mark to partner with us for a center that will mean so much to all of our student-athletes."

The Academic Center of Excellence will be located beneath the Norton Terrace at the South end of the Papa John's Cardinal Stadium. The center will house the academic operations for the entire athletic department and all student-athletes and academic staff will be located in one building. The center will feature tutorial areas, laboratories, office areas and classroom space. Fundraising is continuing for the facility.

Maker's Mark began producing U of L commemorative bottles in 2012 to support the center.  The initial two bottles featured then-Louisville football coach Charlie Strong in July 2012; and depicted U of L men's basketball coach Rick Pitino in June 2013 to commemorate his induction into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and the Cardinals' 2013 national championship.

Jurich, Samuels, Chairman Emeritus Bill Samuels, Jr. and Master Distiller Greg Davis will autograph bottles at a special ticketed signing event next month. Beginning at 10 a.m. on July 30, tickets for the autograph session will go on sale for $1 each at this link: Each ticket allows the bearer to have one bottle signed, and only the ticket-holder will be admitted to the event. Bottles must be purchased at a retail outlet prior to the signing; there will be no bottles for sale at the event. There will be 700 tickets sold online on a first come, first served basis.  Participants must be at least 21 years of age to attend the signing.  Only the 2014 Jurich commemorative bottles will be signed.

The bottle-signing will be on Wednesday, Aug. 13, from 5-7 p.m. at the KFC Yum! Center main lobby. Previously purchased tickets will be available to be picked up at the KFC Yum! Center main front lobby beginning at 4 p.m. Tickets will not be sold at the door.  Questions regarding the bottle signing event may be directed to Christy Waltrip at (502) 852-0706 or via email at