Name, Image and Likeness, better known as NIL will open up a new world of college sports beginning in July. With athletes now able to receive payment from advertisers and companies, this could significantly change the landscape of college athletics.
Particularly college football.
Precedence will now be placed on possessing the access to premier sponsorship dollars available on the open market, something that could produce the return of some of the sport's blue-blood programs.
Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State and Georgia have a stranglehold on the premier talent in the sport today, but it wasn't always that way. Several programs nationwide have reached similar heights, but in recent years have fallen to the wayside.
Schools like Texas, Michigan, USC and Miami all have the resources to put together talented rosters, but have consistently underachieved in the past decade.
The NIL shifts the balance of power in favor of these programs. Moreover, it brings a competitive advantage that could vault some of the most prestigious schools in college football to the forefront of the sport. Here's why:
Ultra-High Net Worth Individuals. These are people with a net worth north of $30 million. Believe it or not, the educational backgrounds of a large portion of these individuals aren't spread evenly across the university system in the country.
In fact, they are consolidated in a select group of schools like Harvard, Columbia, Yale and MIT. However, there are certain public universities that have an immense pool of wealth at their disposal, and they used to be really good at football.
- Miami: 1,700 alumni considered to be ultra-high-net-worth individuals. Also set to become the crypto-currency capital of the world.
- Michigan: 1,970 UHNW alumni, including Larry Page, the co-founder of Google.
- Texas: Five billionaire graduates, including the owner of Dell.
- USC: 2,645 ultra-high-net-worth alumni and its own movie studio.
Not only do these schools have high-powered alumni, but with high net-worth individuals come ownership in marketable companies that need faces.
So, it is not absurd to think these alumni could make a college athlete the face of their company if they play for their alma mater. In fact, it's rather plausible.
Take Georgia, for example. Onward Reserve is a clothing and apparel company based in Athens and its founder is a proud graduate of UGA. Onward Reserve recently signed five Georgia athletes to marketing deals, including freshman quarterback Brock Vandagriff.
The NIL is already starting to become a factor in recruiting. Defensive end Mykell Williams committed to USC over the weekend on an official visit. According to reports, Williams was blown away by the NIL opportunities available to him at USC.
Schools like Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State and Georgia will have to figure out a way to keep up on the recruiting trail. Unfortunately, while they can offer chances at a national title and elite development, they do not have as deep an alumni network as some these other prestigious programs.
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