College athletes now profit from name, image, and likeness (NIL) deals.

TwoSq Media

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National College Athletic Association opened up name, image, and likeness deals for college athletes of every stature.Seeklogo

Becoming a sports agent used to be reserved for servicing deals of professional athletes including endorsement and other kinds of deals. Nowadays, the deals are coming to college athletes.

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Quinn Ewers enrolled in college early, allowing him to sign a $1.4 million NIL deal.24/7Sports

An unnamed 2023 college football recruit signs a name image and likeness (NIL) deal for $8 million, in May 2022. According to a report from Bleacher Report, a digital sports news website, this deal would be the largest NIL deal for a non-professional athlete to date.

It has long been illegal for a college athlete to conduct NIL deals while being a student. In fact, the National College Athletic Association (NCAA), suspended 8 University of Miami football players for receiving improper gifts in 2011, according to an Insider article.

The NCAA, college athletes, and parents quarreled between the Association and Universities on what they believed was the student’s right to earn from their name, image, and likeness, while in college. Now, international law firm, Gerben, is providing education and assistance to college athletes to protect their name, image, and likeness.

On June 20, 2021, the NCAA President Mark Emmert, announced through an official press release that the NCAA passed an interim rule allowing college athletes to profit from their name, image, and likeness. He’s quoted in the release as saying,

This is an important day for college athletes since they all are now able to take advantage of name, image and likeness opportunities”

Since 2021, college athletes have been getting NIL deals with companies ranging from major brands like Kool-Aid, Buffalo Wild Wings all the way to local businesses.

NIL Deals in 2021

A company named Dreamfield, specializes in NIL deals for college athletes. Here are 3 NIL deals signed by college athletes in 2021:

1. The Mercedes Benz EQS Brand Ambassador Program

This program was a brand partnership with college athletes. With this partnership, Mercedes is looking to create awareness for its electric vehicles, by hosting a variety of meet and greets with college athletes.

2. The $1.4 Million GT Sports Marketing Deal With Quinn Ewers

GT Sports is a sports marketing company. Quinn Ewers was the #1 highschool draft pick in the nation and committed to Ohio State University, skipping his senior year of highschool. The NIL deal he signed was for three years of autograph signing with GT Sports.

3. The MaximBet Statewide Deal for Female Athletes

Though NIL deals are legal, however most states do not allow deals with companies that are involved in gambling. Maximbet found an exception in the state of Colorado, and offered all college female athletes in the state an NIL deal.

The endorsement deal market has opened itself to US college athletes. While many of the nation’s top brands are fashioning these deals for athletes, many athletes and student families might not be aware of the new NCAA NIL allowance for athletes.

Where to start getting your NIL deal

Parents of, and college athletes can initiate their own deals, or respond to deals from companies. Further, in the interest of the athlete, there are many companies liaisoning the college athlete to the NIL deal. According to Nilnetwork.com a couple are:

98 Strong (founded by former college student athletes) has a mission to give the opportunity for athletes to profit from their name, image, and likeness, to all college athletes; even the 98% that won't go to the pros. 98strong provides the opportunity for college athletes to register at 98strong.com, and receive NIL deal offers directly to their inbox.

CleanKonnect’s mission is to get college athletes paid quickly and effectively, so they can focus on academics and sports. CleanKonnect provides proprietary insights to athletes' social media, to gain leverage for deals. CleanKonnect comes with an added bonus of free non-fungible token (NFT) creation for events like commitment signings.

Gifted is a service to get NIL deals for not only college athletes, but for

“individuals with gifted skills and mindsets.”

Gifted offers Personal Brand portfolio building, custom contract drafting and more.

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While the NCAA awaits ruling from Congress, the interim NIL rule applies to all NCAA athletes and sports.National Fastpitch Coaches Association

Each of the three companies offering NIL liaison services, provide them for free. These services are in the interest of the student athlete to profit from their names, image and likenesses.

This is the United States of America with all of its free-market freedoms. Therefore, if you would like to broker deals for college athletes, networking and portfolio presentation are important.

The NIL market for college athletes is less than a year old. The NCAA ruling to make NIL deals legal for college athletes is valid for athletes competing in Division I, Division II, and Division III sports teams.

Credits:

Bleacher Report

Gerben Law Firm

National College Athletic Association

Dreamfield

NIL Network

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Hello, I'm Harrison, a writer for TwoSq Media; a contributor to NewsBreak. I analyze local news, business, and technology's influence on how we live our lives. I recently earned a Master of Business Administration from Morehead State University.

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