The Minneapolis ad agency Fallon has been selected by Buffalo Wild Wings as the restaurant chain's lead creative advertising agency on a $60 million account.

Fallon confirmed the relationship Monday, although St. Louis Park-based Buffalo Wild Wings said it would announce its roster of advertising agencies for the next year later this week.

Minneapolis-based Space150 also is expected to on that list handling social media duties for the 820-unit restaurant chain.

Fallon CEO Mike Buchner called Buffalo Wild Wings "a brave brand" that shares "our passion for calculated risk taking."

"We're honored to be working with such a maverick in the restaurant world and look forward to doing our part to help accelerate their growth," Buchner said in a statement to the Star Tribune.

Fallon is to replace 22Squared for creative work, but the Atlanta-based agency will continue to provide media planning and in-store promotion services, according to the industry newsletter Advertising Age.

Fallon's first work for Buffalo Wild Wings is expected to be ready for NCAA basketball's March Madness.

In comments to analysts at the release of third quarter financial results late last year, Chief Financial Officer Mary Twinem said improvements in same-store sales had given the company extra marketing dollars to use. The company plans to report fourth quarter earnings on Feb. 7.

Analysts are split on the chain's immediate future, citing the shortened NBA season, the higher cost of raw chicken wings and the increase in company-owned stores as opposed to franchised locations. Among analysts who cover the company, 11 have ''buy'' recommendations and eight have ''hold'' recommendations, according to Bloomberg News.

David Phelps • 612-673-7269