IRVINE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The impressive performances of San Francisco 49ers’ Colin Kaepernick and Aldon Smith have not only wowed the crowds at Candlestick Park, but have landed them in the top five of Brand Affinity Technologies (BAT) ‘Rising Sports Stars’ List for December. Calculated monthly, the ‘Rising Sports Stars’ List measures the U.S. athletes with the most significant leap in popularity during the previous 30 days, which could generate huge fan and advertising followings.
With the talents of Kaepernick and Smith, San Francisco is in scoring distance of another championship prize, this time in football. Along with the 49ers’ players, Jacksonville Jaguars’ Cecil Shorts and Dallas Cowboys’ Dez Bryant also made it onto BAT’s top five, as they are both on pace to reach their first 1000-yard receiving seasons, respectively. Rounding out the Top Five is Greg Monroe, of the Detroit Pistons, who has everybody talking with his outstanding early season play on both sides of the floor.
“This month’s list of rising stars reflects the depth of the young talent pool playing in San Francisco and why the 49ers are in prime position to capture the city by the bay’s 2nd major title this year,” said Ryan Steelberg, CEO of Brand Affinity Technologies. “As the season closes up, this young veteran 2012 team has the ability to increase the brand value of those individual athletes exceeding expectations on the field.”
The Top Five athletes on “BAT’s Rising Stars” list include:
1. Colin Kaepernick (Quarterback, San Francisco 49ers): Kaepernick’s “hot hand” and versatile running game earned him his first two NFL starts this season, and ultimately caused coach Jim Harbaugh to place him as the team’s starting quarterback over, a now healthy, Alex Smith. With two games under his belt, Kaepernick’s stats are impressive, completing 48 of 74 passes for 680 yards and three touchdowns with one interception and a passer rating of 102.3.
2. Cecil Shorts (Wide Receiver, Jacksonville Jaguars): Drafted in the 4th round by the Jaguars in 2011, Shorts is already making big plays this season, emerging as a consistent big-play threat for the team. He's averaging 20.8 yards per catch, considered a deep threat on every play, and is on pace to be the Jaguars' first 1000 yard receiver since 2005.
3. Aldon Smith (Linebacker, San Francisco 49ers): Smith, who leads the NFL record with 16.5 sacks, was named November’s defensive player of the month by the NFC. Despite dealing with a shoulder injury, Smith continues to have a stellar year and has great odds of securing the NFL record for sacks in one season.
4. Greg Monroe (Center, Detroit Pistons): Drafted by the Pistons in the 2010 NBA Draft as the 7th overall pick, Monroe is still making the team proud by playing hard and earning the Pistons their first triple-double since 2004. However, it’s his playmaking skills and versatility that set him apart from other NBA centers, with an average of 16.5 points, 9.4 rebounds and 3.6 assists this season, he is one of the most elite centers in the league and currently ranked third among NBA’s big men.
5. Dez Bryant (Wide Receiver, Dallas Cowboys): In recent weeks, Bryant has been putting up big numbers in nationally televised games. In the last two games, Bryant had a career high of 145 receiving yards, and is only 120 yards away from his first 1,000-yard receiving season. Bryant is currently 11th in the NFL in receiving yards.
For the full list and additional details go to http://www.brandaffinity.net/rising-stars/december-2012/
Brand Affinity Technologies (BAT) calculates daily consumer affinity based on a proprietary combination of media exposure, performance, awards, popularity, engagement, and fan base, among other indicators, for more than 45,000 athletes and celebrities. The list identifies sports stars with the greatest leap in popularity over the prior 30 days. A meteoric rise may indicate a standout on-the-field performance, off-the-field achievement, or emergence from utility player to celebrity.
About Brand Affinity Technologies (BAT)
Brand Affinity Technologies (BAT), founded in 2007, is a technology and marketing services company focused on activating, engaging, and monetizing the FAN. BAT’s offerings power highly-targeted and interactive 360° fan-centric experiences and promotions. Its partners include thousands of celebrities, athletes, professional sports teams and leagues, and event promoters. For more information, visit http://www.brandaffinity.net and http://www.fantapper.com.