I’m sure some of you will see this piece as a sort of “a-ha!” moment, but I’m really not getting the point to it.
Some college athletes will benefit greatly from the NCAA’s modernization of rules allowing them to profit off their name, image and likeness.
Many, however, will not see much of an increase — if at all — in their bank account. The NCAA’s working group recommended to the organization’s Board of Governors to allow college athletes to profit off their name, image and likeness, but with certain guidelines, and “guardrails” are still being developed through feedback from college universities and conferences. Still, the implementation of the new rules appear to be on the fast track before the 2021 football season, and football programs across the country are already implementing training sessions to help prepare athletes for the possibilities that include pitfalls, harsh realities and potential success stories as they enter the business world as potential spokespeople and managers of their own personal brand.
Brand marketing consultant Jeremy Darlow has been hired by Georgia Tech and West Virginia in recent weeks to help educate players about how the impending “NIL” ruling will affect players. Sure, there is money to be made, but the vast majority of players are not in a position to capitalize.
“People on the fringe are going to come to school thinking I have an opportunity to get a shoe deal or an endorsement deal from this major brand, and that’s just not how it’s going to be, in my opinion,” Darlow told 247Sports. “It might be the Wild West a little bit at the beginning but once things settle down you’re going to see the same athletes signing deals that you would have seen (after college).”
I think he’s selling some kids a little short here — there are college athletes who are going to have an opportunity to monetize their social media skills but aren’t going to sign anything after college — but the larger question is, is every college athlete truly convinced they’re about to make their fortune with NIL? I have a hard time believing that.
After all, haven’t y’all been regularly assuring us that the third-string offensive lineman is going to be extremely jealous of the star quarterback who gets the marketing glory?