Florida Gators QB Anthony Richardson distancing from ‘AR-15’ nickname, branding

Florida quarterback Anthony Richardson said in a statement Sunday that he will no longer use the “AR-15” moniker as part of his personal branding because he doesn’t want to be associated with the semi-automatic rifle of the same name that did so used in mass shootings.

An AR-15 rifle was used in the shooting dead of 19 children and two adults at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, in May.

“While a nickname is just a nickname and ‘AR-15’ was simply a representation of my initials combined with my jersey number, it is important to me that my name and trademark no longer be associated with the semi-automatic rifle that it is.” was used in mass shootings, which I do not condone in any way or form,” Richardson said in a post on his official website. “My representatives and I are currently working on a rebrand that will involve the creation of a new logo and a transition to simply using ‘ AR’ and my name is Anthony Richardson.”

Capitalizing on collegiate athletes’ newfound ability to make money from name, image and likeness businesses, Richardson last year launched an apparel line that included jerseys, long-sleeved shirts, armbands and temporary tattoos.

Richardson said he will also stop using the scope crosshair logo.

Richardson emerged as a fan favorite and gifted playmaker as a freshman in Florida last season.

Despite assisting starting quarterback Emory Jones for most of the season and dealing with a knee injury that kept him off the field late in the year, Richardson managed nine total touchdowns — six passing and three rushing.

Jones moved to Arizona State in the spring and paved the way for Richardson to become the front-runner under new coach Billy Napier and start for the Gators that season.

Richardson, with only one career start, debuted at number 13 on ESPN NFL draft pick Mel Kiper Jr.’s Big Board of Prospects in May.

Florida opens the season on September 3 against Utah.

https://www.espn.com/college-football/story/_/id/34259562/florida-gators-qb-anthony-richardson-distancing-ar-15-nickname-branding Florida Gators QB Anthony Richardson distancing from ‘AR-15’ nickname, branding

Emma Bowman

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