Although he won't be on the field, Bo Jackson will still be a part of tonight's All-Star Game.
The injured two-sport sensation is the star of a new 60-second Nike commercial that will debut during CBS's coverage of the game.
"The Bo Show," which includes a closing cameo by George Foreman, opens with Jackson as a tuxedo-clad, Vegas-style lounge singer surrounded by gyrating chorus girls wearing Chicago White Sox and Los Angeles Raiders uniforms. But he ends up giving up the glitz for the grind of rehabilitating his injured hip.
Bo doesn't dance in the commercial, but he looks pretty healthy for a guy recovering from a career-threatening injury. Jackson was still using crutches when the commercial was filmed in May, but he kept them off camera while the ad was being shot.
"We're very sensitive about his situation, so we didn't ask him to do anything too strenuous," said Nike spokeswoman Liz Dolan.
Since injuring himself in January during the NFL playoffs, Bo has stayed busy with his rugged rehab regimen and steady stream of commercial commitments. Bo knows business, but is he in danger of overexposure?
"I don't think so," Dolan said. "America has a great curiosity about people like Bo and Michael Jordan. They both do a lot of ads, but they're for good, solid companies and they're entertaining commercials. As long as they're careful about the products they endorse, I don't see any problem."
In Bo's case, a commercial can also serve as a progress report on his physical status. Jackson is reportedly recovering better than expected and may even be able to play some baseball this season.
"Our consumers are big sports fans, and they want to know how Bo's doing," Dolan said. "When they see him moving around in a commercial, that's a good sign for them."
Dolan said Nike is unveiling the new ad during the All-Star telecast because of the large viewing audience and because it kicks off the biggest selling season of the year for athletic footwear.
"July and August are our biggest months," she said. "All our new products arrive in stores this week, so it's perfect timing."
Nike will air three other new spots during the All-Star broadcast. Two of them feature Jordan and fictional fan Mars Blackmon, while the other stars David Robinson.