March Madness Has An Official Ladder?

Vitaminwater is the official drink of the NCAA men's basketball tournament and Papa John's is the official pizza. But did you know that there's an official ladder?

I'm not joking.

When this year's champions go to cut down the nets, they'll be standing on a Werner ladder. The company forged this rather interesting partnership with the NCAA last year.

Werner is the world's leading manufacturer and distributor of ladders and ladder accessories, as many professional contractors know, but the company wanted to be more top-of-mind with everyday consumers, said Kathy Cianci, Werner's marketing channel specialist.

If you think that the ladder that the championship team climbs on is an ordinary ladder, think again.


Cianci says that although ladders come in heights of an even number, the championship ladder is modified to stand at exactly nine feet. Why? So that a six-footer can comfortably stand on the ladder on just the right step to cut the nets.

The NCAA championship ladder also has the standard magnetic strip that's on the top of Werner ladders. Contractors put metal objects on it. Players put the scissors.

The partnership is re-signed on a year-by-year basis, but Cianci says Werner is very happy with it. And the company isn't just hoping you'll notice their logos as "One Shining Moment" is playing. They've purchased online banner ads on school fan Web sites and, for the second straight year, they are sponsors of Mike & Mike's "Sheet of Integrity" Challenge on ESPN Radio.

Questions? Comments?