Johnny makes bank.

No doubt you’re aware that Manziel currently has no affiliation with a football team.  That doesn’t seem to have limited his ability to earn something off his name.

The former Texas A&M quarterback signed an endorsement deal with Nike that spokesman KeJuan Wilkins confirmed to ESPN.com on Thursday night.

Manziel will wear Nike gear and appear in marketing campaigns for the global apparel and shoe manufacturer, Wilkins told the network. No contract details were announced, but ESPN reported that the deal is for multiple years and will be the largest Nike contract for a rookie in the 2014 draft class.

I doubt Nike is planning to restrict promoting him to the College Station market.  So can we take a moment to concede that at least for some players, the NCAA’s amateurism mandate acts as a bar to earning compensation for the use of one’s name or likeness?  And that at least some of that market value is derived from a source other than a school’s name on a jersey?  That hardly seems like rocket science.

The hard part is understanding why that’s fair.

About these ads

13 Comments

Filed under The NCAA

13 responses to “Johnny makes bank.

  1. Hogbody Spradlin

    It’s fair because all college administrators think they’re John Gielgud in Chariots of Fire. “Mr. Abrahams, the way of the amateur . . . “

  2. Just playing devil’s advocate here, but had he been playing in some developmental league the past 2 years rather than having the platform of exposure provided by the NCAA and its schools, it is conceivable he wouldn’t have that contract in hand at all today.

    (Not trying to argue the current system is completely fair by any stretch, again, just playing devil’s advocate.)

    • SCDawg

      I would assume the D-League would have paid him something. Nuke LaLoosh made a lot of money for the Durham Bulls. But, you’re right, the exposure for his likeness would not have been there. Fair tradeoff? Interesting question.

    • Since we’re assuming here, who’s to say how the NFL would promote its minor league players?

      • Fair point. A lot of assumptions either way. I guess I’m thinking of something along the lines of the WLAF, which did have NFL backing, and didn’t do much promoting. But that’s not to say they couldn’t follow a different script.

    • GaskillDawg

      Sure, the colleges promote their players and the players get enhanced public appeal due to that. However, for me, the issue is not whether the player gets a bigger endorsement contract after college than he would after a D league. The issue for me is that with the D league endorsements the player gets a share of the commerce in his name. In college everyone in the commerce food chain got paid over the table except Manziel.

      I don’t buy the “colleges make millions on selling player’s jerseys.” The colleges’ share of the merchandising revenue is not anywhere near millions. Even if it is just hundreds the player should not be the only guy left out.

  3. Go Dawgs!

    It is an irrefutable fact that Johnny Manziel has built appeal with people who do not root for Texas A&M (I am certainly not one of them). There are people who root for Manziel who did not GAS about Texas A&M before he came on the scene and they will not care about A&M now that he has gone, unless Sumlin is enthusiastic about the distractions caused by Johnny Football and is building another bad boy playboy quarterback. Manziel’s brashness and disregard for the unwritten rules imposed on him by the gray haired forefathers of his sport have made him a rock star among a certain demographic who couldn’t find College Station on a map. The money he’s making now is because of the name on the back of the jersey, not the front. A&M gave him a stage, but he made himself a star. The NCAA should have let him profit. Well, it did, I guess. It should have let AJ GREEN profit.