Oregon Athletic Director Rob Mullens Discusses NIL Strategy, Corruption in College Athletics

Oregon Athletic Director Rob Mullens Discusses NIL Strategy, Corruption in College Athletics
Oregon coach Dan Lanning, left, and Oregon Athletic Director Rob Mullen celebrate the win over Utah
Oregon coach Dan Lanning, left, and Oregon Athletic Director Rob Mullen celebrate the win over Utah / Chris Pietsch/The Register-Guard / USA

Name, image, and likeness strategy has become one of the most important factors in the success of collegiate athletics programs across the country. In a recent episode of The Bald Faced Truth with John Canzano, Oregon Athletic Director Rob Mullens detailed how the University of Oregon’s Division Street NIL collective has implemented a uniquely effective program to bring the best talent possible to Eugene.

On whether he supports a pay-for-play model for college athletes, Mullens said:

“I support the continuum that we’ve been on which started with cost of attendance, unlimited meals, an ability to take advantage of your name, image likeness. Pay-for-play is not the way I think it needs to go. When you look across our 450 student-athletes, that model doesn’t fit the entire system. I think using pay-for-play as employment is one step too far.”

Canzano also asked about Division Street - “Division Street has obviously been supportive of the athletic department. How does that work?” 

“We have dialogue with Division Street whether it’s education or understanding,” said Mullens. "Coming in the fall, we can facilitate deals for student-athletes and our multimedia rights partner can facilitate deals so it’s rapidly changing. We’re going to be able to be more involved in a direct connection and facilitation of deals.”

Canzano next posed a multiple-choice question on corruption in college athletics, asking “The NIL world has A) lessened the amount of corruption in college athletics, B) increased the amount of corruption in college athletics, or C) Eh, it’s about the same”.

“I think where it’s headed is gonna lessen it,” Mullens said. “What’s hard to measure is in the transition, is everyone following the letter of the law? Probably not … as we work through this system there are certain things you can enforce and can’t enforce. Where we’re gonna be in the fall, it provides clarity on what the guardrails are.”

Longtime and new college athletics fans alike have numerous questions and concerns about NIL and its implications. Overall, Mullens sounds optimistic on where the policy is headed as we head into summer and fall. As Oregon moves into the Big Ten Conference, making use of all resources available in the NIL space will be more important than ever.

RELATED: Oregon Athletic Director Rob Mullens Reveals Emotions On Pac-12 Conference Downfall

RELATED: Big Ten Conference Football Championship Odds After College Football Spring Games

RELATED: Oregon Basketball Schedule: Big Ten Conference Releases Opponents


Published |Modified
Bri Amaranthus

BRI AMARANTHUS