The giant gold chain with a bedazzled University of Miami logo has garnered the attention of the college football world. Miami defensive coordinator Manny Diaz came up with the idea this summer. Over the past several years, college football programs have come up with different ideas to incentivize creating turnovers on defense.
Georgia has gold shoulder pads with spikes, Alabama has a championship belt and Texas A&M has a cane. Diaz idea took things to another level. This is not a chain the team purchased off the internet, rather Diaz contacted famed jeweler AJ Machado, also known as “The King of Bling,” to create some sort of chain for the team. Here’s a look at Machado sporting the Turnover Chain.
According to ESPN, the Cuban link chain is 36 inches long and weighs 5.5 pounds. The “U” logo is filled with orange and green sapphire stones, but the price of the chain is top secret. The Sun-Sentinel notes the chain is only 10-karat gold, and is mixed with other materials to allow Miami to save money on the chain.
The idea is simple, the defensive player that ends up with the turnover gets to wear the chain on the sidelines as the video below shows.
Apparel and jewelry companies are capitalizing on the success of the football team and popularity of the outlandish Turnover Chain. Miami is an Adidas school, and Adidas has released several iterations of Turnover Chain shirts that fans can purchase for $29.99. Former Miami player D.J. Williams owns the clothing company Dyme Lyfe, who has also designed their own Turnover Chain shirts which fans can buy for $30. According to ESPN, Dyme Lyfe has already sold $200,000 of t-shirts, a number that will undoubtedly go up if Miami continues winning games.
Looking for your own version of the Turnover Chain? There are no shortage of options, including Dyme Lyfe’s edition which runs $150. Fans can find Turnover Chain necklaces on eBay, and the prices range from $60-$400. Alex Rodriguez even got in on the action, as ABC showed Rodriguez during the Miami-Virginia Tech game wearing his own necklace.
Joel Rodriguez, Miami’s director of defensive player development, explained to ESPN how the Turnover Chain embodies the program.
There are a lot of other schools that have turnover apparel, whether it’s a belt or a trash can or a cane or whatever it is. They’re all good ideas, but what does a trash can have to do with program X or a belt with program Z? To me, a big, gold, Cuban link chain is Miami. It fits the program, it fits the culture of where we are, it fits our attitude, it fits what we want to be about. It’s one of those perfect storms where everything came together. It just fits.