“If it’s not illegal, it’s not cheating.”

Had this little observation about Corch yesterday:

So, now I can’t help but wonder after reading this piece on “inducement concerns”

It has been less than two weeks since The Athletic reported that a five-star high school football player has signed a name, image and likeness contract with a collective that could pay him $8 million by the end of his junior year. That’s a clear indication the limits for NIL deals — $8 million for a high school athlete! — are still tough to define…

The contract states that, in exchange for a payment of almost $350,000, the Class of 2023 athlete will sign over his NIL rights to the collective. What follows is escalating monthly payments worth almost $2 million per year. The money would be earned for the usual in the NIL sphere — public appearances and social media.

Could the collective withhold money if the athlete decides to transfer?

(Well, I’d say if the kid manages to bank, say, the better part of $4 million over a couple of years, I doubt he’s gonna be overly concerned about the collective’s threat if he wants to transfer, should he perceive a better opportunity elsewhere.  Not to mention the second a collective announces that tactic, it’s publicly acknowledged that there’s no longer the mere appearance of an inducement in play.  Even the chickenshit NCAA would have enough to react at that point.  But I digress.)

— how long, exactly, would Urban Meyer keep his shit together with a star player making more than any of his assistant coaches, a player who also could walk away if he didn’t feel like putting up with Meyer’s act?  Yeah, that’s what I think, too.

Now, for “Urban Meyer”, substitute the name of any insecure control freak who is the head coach at a college football program.

Recruiting experts contacted by CBS Sports agreed on that the identity of the five-star prospect who signed the contract could be narrowed down.

Given the amount of money, it is almost certainly a skill player. CBS Sports was told it is not quarterback Arch Manning, the New Orleans-based grandson of Archie Manning and No. 1 overall recruit in the Class of 2023.

The player’s identity is less relevant than the fact that a high school junior has signed what’s believed to be the largest NIL deal to date. It certainly is the largest known NIL compensation ever given to a high school player.

Coaches continue to freak.

The biggest question now: How high is up when it comes to the next NIL blockbuster?

Kirby isn’t insecure, but if he does in fact wind up signing Arch Manning, it’s bound to be a wild ride in Athens.



Filed under It's Just Bidness, The NCAA

52 responses to ““If it’s not illegal, it’s not cheating.”

  1. fisheriesdawg

    What I’m looking forward to is when a guy signs with, for instance, the Ole Miss collective and then transfers to a rival like Mississippi State. Rather than releasing the kid from his NIL deal, they may just keep paying him, hold on to his rights, and use his NIL to troll Mississippi State. Like, what.if they deepfake him making all of the old stereotypical jokes about Starkville and its fans?

    Come to think of it, maybe the collectives should get video up front of all of these kids wearing school colors and savagely trashing their rival fanbases for a little bit of transfer insurance…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Down Island Way

    Have no problemo with signing any top rated qb @ UGA football, this guy might cause a serious exodus (and I ain’t talkin’ Robert Nesta Marley) from that room, as might any bad ass qb…GO DAWGS!


  3. Ran A

    Not going to pretend that I’m surprised about this. I was slow to warm to paying players and now really I was wrong. If there were ever a reason for the NCAA to exist; this is it. Common sense guidelines are much needed. The NFL is considered the best ran professional league in sports. Guess what the NFL has? A cap. Why doo they have a cap; because there is always going to be one or two owners that will spend whatever it takes and drive the cost of players further and further up.

    Now think about college football. All your need is a billionaire or two that is heavily invested into your program and you can basically buy your team. Look at A&M and in particular, look at Tennessee.

    Jimmy Haslam is worth 3.6B and is a huge fan. My guess is that this is the guy behind the 5star QB committing and rumored to be the kid with the $8MM offer.

    In the $EC, where it just means more; this can get out of control quickly. A&M fired the first shot and my guess is that UT is using the anti “big time”.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Ran A

      Will say this; that every coach had better be smart about this. You have to believe that this has the potential to destroy a locker room and team environment really really quick.


      • KingMackeral

        IMO, this is the most fascinating item to watch unfold. The impact on chemistry and the team when there is that much money flowing around, unique to each individual. Visible playing time will now be crucial and that will (in many cases) be in conflict with said chemistry and camaraderie.

        I predict we will see a high-profile program implode from this, probably sooner rather than later. What transpires from there (and how kids see it) is the question.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Guess what the NFL has? A cap. Why doo they have a cap…

      Because they have a limited antitrust exemption and a CBA! It’s not that complicated. (By the way, a salary cap and an NIL cap are two totally different things.)

      It’s just that the geniuses running college football thought they were immune from antitrust liability without actually having an exemption. That’s worked out really well for them.

      Liked by 5 people

      • Ran A

        Senator, what is the fix? I think you have looked at this more than most. Curious to your thoughts. This feels like it could spin completely out of control really-really fast.
        Is that the solution. Let nature takes it’s course and those who manage it well – manage it well and those that do not, get eaten?
        What does that do to the locker room? I’m going to be fascinated to watch what happens at A*M after Spring Practice. Will there be announcements of new NIL agreements with players already on the team? Will their be an exodus that is NIL related? (I’m starting over the guy who was just handed $250,000?)

        I’m at a lost personally. Would love your insight.


        • I really don’t get y’alls money/locker room fixation here. You don’t think some players were getting paid, and paid more than others, all along? How many stories have you ever heard about a locker room blowing up over money? Eric Dickerson got paid. Cam got paid. Kyler Murray got paid (no NCAA violation, either). A bunch of basketball players got shoe company money. Where are their locker room stories?

          As for the solution, well, that’s not really up to me. Do the schools sound like they’re willing to do any more right now than beg Congress for an antitrust exemption? That ain’t happening.

          Caps on NIL are even trickier to limit than caps on salaries. Basically, until the schools and the NCAA are willing to roll up their sleeves to come up with a framework that allows for legitimate player input, what you see is what you’re gonna get for the foreseeable future.

          Liked by 3 people

          • Ran A

            Of course we believe players were getting paid. And will plead pure ignorance to how much, but I doubt there was a $8MM deal on the table. This

            Didn’t expect you to have all of the solutions. But I respect your opinion and was just interested in your thoughts.

            Will say this. I’m surprised you are not more concerned. You actually do a better job of making my point. NIL is not salary. So how do you control it? And if you can’t, what makes any of us think that Universities with big donors will show any control in what they are willing to pay for these kids.

            The NFL couldn’t do it, and we are talking about very smart business people here. They had to self-impose a cap to protect them from themselves. I do not see the NCAA being able to pull that off.

            Thanks again for responding. I think we just see this one a little differently.


            • You are conflating NIL compensation with salaries. They aren’t the same thing. So talk of the NFL cap isn’t a good analogy.

              What exactly am I supposed to be concerned about? That Brock Bowers’ teammates are going to be consumed with jealousy over his NIL deal?

              I hate to break it to you guys, but the players aren’t as bothered by the sausage making as y’all are.

              What I was bothered about was cartel behavior by the NCAA. What we’ve got now is chaotic, no doubt, but I’d rather have the money out in the open, with players as full participants in the market, than what we had before.

              Liked by 2 people

              • Derek

                Its the recruiting. Stop the bleed over into recruiting and I’m not sure there are a lot of valid complaints. The problem is that there isn’t a solution to that problem OTHER than the prior prohibitions against NLI.

                Liked by 1 person

    • Phil Knight. Boone Pickens. IPTAY. REC. The money has been there all along, funneled to the ADs, coaching staff, stadium suites and “projects”. The kids got TVs in their lockers and a water slide. From the inferences about this $8M deal it’s loaded with incentives. If a kid can generate millions of clicks on a product(s) for the backers, it costs them little on a net basis.

      How does a coach control a kid with that much money in the locker room? Same as always…playing time. Loss of PT = loss of incentive comp. Yep…crazy stuff going on and will get worse, but it will find an economic equilibrium unless or until the NCAA finds yet another way to screw things up.

      Let me ask those offended by this….adjusted for inflation, would you have been upset if Herschel had a deal for $500,000 while at UGA?


  4. gastr1

    I know NIL is the point, but I want to state that Urban Meyer is perhaps the biggest asshole in sports. Too bad we didn’t hear more about this back when he was coaching the greatest teams of our era.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. beatarmy92

    Worst kept secret is the player is the 5* QB from SoCal that committed to UTenn a couple of days ago. Now it can’t be pay for play, but if the Vol collective is explicitly only for UT athletes like the Classic City Collective then I think if he transfers the payments can stop with no issue, legal or NCAA rules-wise.


    • Stewart Mandel reviewed that particular contract and noted this:

      There is no mention of any specific university, only that he be “enrolled at an NCAA member institution and a member of the football team at such institution,” ostensibly to avoid violating the NCAA’s pay-for-play rule. The only specific circumstances by which the collective could terminate the contract early is if the player violates a confidentiality clause or a clause about conducting himself with “the utmost character and integrity.”


      • beatarmy92

        Interesting. He’s free then to transfer, but he’s still sold his rights while he’s in college. I wonder if the collective has the right to make him do appearances, sign stuff, and the like beyond just his image, even if he doesn’t want to.


      • Derek

        We all know what the “‘ut’most” signifies.

        Liked by 1 person

    • atticus34

      Look up Haslem….


  6. NotMyCrossToBear

    Urban is such a terrible human being.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. gastr1

    Also, has anyone noted that Meyer just signed on with a hilariously-named foundation to assist tOSU players with NIL resources? https://www.sportscasting.com/urban-meyer-found-new-familiar-home-catastrophic-jaguars-stint-ohio-state/


  8. Got Cowdog

    So the Kid in question gets 350k his junior year of high school? Did I read that correctly?


  9. rigger92

    Hopefully we are still a long way away in CFB from just bringing in Brady or Stafford (so glad I can add him to the club) and winning it all. If it’s TN doing this it won’t matter much, still have to have a complete team.

    And yeah, corch would not fare well these days, about as well as Pruitt did.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. sundiatagaines

    Agree on the Urban analysis. Everybody has to be a little bit more of a “players’ coach” now. Tom Crean sure found that out.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. debbybalcer

    Doesn’t the kid have to be 18 for the contract to be legally binding?


  12. Skeptic Dawg

    I openly admit that I am a college football romantic, a dyeing breed for sure. I still hold to the idea of true student athletes, while watching the sea change before my eyes. I do not like where college football appears to be heading. The concept of openly paying high school players who have yet to play a down in college football is a bridge to far. Yes, I know good and well that players have been paid under the table for decades, but this feels different. I like a good hotdog, but I don’t need to watch how it is made. People that are smarter than I am foresaw this coming. People on this very website warned us, It seems as if the CFB leadership were not as smart as bloggers on GTP.


  13. Boy, it’d sure be something to become a multi millionaire playing football and never have to subject your body or soul to the NFL.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. It’s almost unbelievable that FU managed to find a coach I’d despise as much as Spurrier. Maybe more. Meyer seems like a real scumbag.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Whiskey Dawg

    Any college coach who has spent time in the NFL will benefit from that experience in dealing with the atmosphere this is creating.


  16. Dylan Dreyer's Booty

    Welp, it’s not just football players:
    which I think is great. What’s going to happen for all the other cheerleaders? And for that matter, the guy that lifted her up?

    Liked by 1 person

  17. rigger92

    FWIW, wife and I are in Athens for a couple days of R&R and I just emailed the classic city collective for an opportunity to sponsor the Battle Hymn trumpeter, hopefully with support from former trumpeters. Looking forward to the response. I did it back in ‘90/‘91 and it’s something that makes my eyes water every time I hear it.

    Got no problem jumping into the mix here though it’s not an athlete. It’s a talent that has to perform on command though, and with the entire stadium looking at you, you have to capture the mood, win, lose, hope to win, hard loss, it’s all different in how you play the tune. Let’s see where this goes.