Category Archives: It’s Just Bidness

Still doing it for the kids

So, Notre Dame’s president and AD pen an editorial in the New York Times entitled “College Sports Are a Treasure. Don’t Turn Them Into the Minor Leagues.” and it’s every bit the joke you’d expect.

The perception has grown in recent years that student-athletes, whose talent and hard work create so much revenue for schools and even coaches, get nothing in return.

Gee, I wonder how that happened.  Let’s trot out that old, familiar straw man in rebuttal.

The claim that student-athletes otherwise get nothing from a multibillion-dollar college sports industry is false — and the misperception behind it goes to the heart of what is at stake.

If a talented high school player heads straight to the minor leagues, he earns a paycheck. If he goes instead to college, he can earn something far more valuable: a degree. Economists estimate a college degree is typically worth about $1 million in enhanced earning power in a lifetime. At our institution, 99 percent of student-athletes who stay for at least four years get a diploma. Because less than 2 percent of all our student-athletes will play in their sport professionally, such a benefit is useful indeed.

The claim isn’t that college athletes are getting nothing.  It’s that they’re not receiving fair market value for their participation.  And if there’s anything that demonstrates the difference, it’s what the NIL era has ushered in and what these two gentlemen complain about in their piece.

Again, expressing concern about what the money flow was doing to change college athletics would have been relevant and even considered a couple of decades ago.  Now, with the horse out of the barn, it’s little more than insipid nostalgia.  But, good luck with it, dudes.



Filed under It's Just Bidness

Today, in “we can’t compete with what our competitors in other states can do at this point”

Florida tweaks its NIL law.

The state of Florida’s name, image and likeness (NIL) amendment has cleared its last legislative hurdle and will now be sent to the desk of governor Ron DeSantis, whose signature is expected as early as Friday or sometime next week, according to sources. The amended law will go into effect once DeSantis signs it.

The main change, spearheaded by state representative Chip LaMarca and state senator Travis Hutson, is the removal of so-called cause compensation language that will allow for schools to more directly facilitate deals. Previously, schools were not allowed to be seen causing cash to be directed to athletes. The original thought behind it was to protect coaches’ time, but functionally it created red tape and confusion as schools tried to navigate what was permissible.

A source at one school gives Sports Illustrated an example of an athlete sending an email to a representative of a collective regarding a deal and cc’ing their coach on it because they didn’t know any better. It created some ambiguity about what exactly was and wasn’t permissible and if the deal could be done at all.

“This allows us to become a little more officially official with the university,” says Corey Staniscia, head of USF’s Fowler Ave collective and a former aide for LaMarca’s. “There’s a lot more flexibility when it comes to coordinating and having conversations with staff and administration in a way that we were restricted before.”

Well, good for them, I guess.  Why was this needed?  I think you know why.

Florida’s initial NIL legislation was drafted at the end of 2019 and wormed its way through the legislative process in early ’20. Florida is one of multiple early adopters that felt some buyer’s remorse. Alabama fully repealed its law, while Nevada is working to amend its own currently. Mississippi, Tennessee, Illinois and Louisiana have previously amended their law. Lawmakers were unable to get significant movement on Florida’s NIL bill in the ’22 legislative session with leadership focused on other issues, but under new Speaker of the Florida House Paul Renner, there was an appetite to take on the NIL issue once more. The alignment allowed the law to fly through the process before the state’s legislative session even begins.

“It’s a priority of this current leadership in the House and Senate and it’s definitely a priority of our governor,” LaMarca says. “I think when we’re all on the same page on something it’s clear that we can get things done. It’s important the date and the timing means that Florida will remain competitive. That’s why we wanted to get it off the agenda now and move on to other business after this.”

SEC speed, baby!

The hilarious thing is these guys are still hoping Congress pulls the NCAA’s nuts out of the fire by passing national legislation.  At some point, it’s going to dawn on everyone that the only realistic way to shut down NIL abuse is to start paying the players directly.


Filed under It's Just Bidness, Political Wankery


No question I find that Josh Brooks has been a refreshing step up from Greg McGarity, but I can’t help but notice there’s one area where he’s followed in his predecessor’s footsteps ($$).

But the department says it only has a real surplus of about $287,000. That’s much less than it appears on the financial report filed to the NCAA, which would be $34 million. Athletic director Josh Brooks said that’s because the NCAA doesn’t count several key items, most notably $25.7 million in capital project expenditures.

“I wish we had a $34 million surplus,” Brooks said.

Athletic director, please.  Just because you chose to spend some of your profit instead of banking it doesn’t mean it’s not profit.  I mean, it’s great that you didn’t have to borrow or go into the red to spend on capital projects.  Just own that, instead of poor mouthing Georgia’s funding prowess.

And prowess it is.

Georgia athletics posted an operating surplus of just over $34.0 million from its fiscal year 2022 NCAA financial report, a 12-month period that included the school’s first football national championship in 41 years.

The UGA Athletic Association reported $203,048,566 in operating revenue and $169,026,503 in operating expenses for the fiscal year that started July 1, 2021 and ended June 30, 2022, according to information it released Wednesday to the Athens Banner-Herald through an open records request.

That’s about $33.9 million more in revenue than a year earlier and about $46.3 million more in expenses.

Georgia’s operating surplus is the second highest among schools whose financial numbers have been reported publicly so far for fiscal year 2022 behind only Indiana’s $34.4 million. Others reported include: Ohio State ($25.9 million), Auburn ($22.9 million), Alabama ($18.5 million), Michigan ($17.1 million), Missouri ($15.5 million) and Florida State ($10.3 million).

And, remember, kids, that’s before the moneys from the new broadcast deal with Mickey start rolling in.  Financially speaking, Butts-Mehre is in good shape for the foreseeable future.


Filed under Georgia Football, It's Just Bidness

The places NIL can take you now.

I’m not saying this is my style (pretty tacky, honestly), but I can see how all the whining in certain corners has given somebody a bright idea on how to turn a buck.

Georgia-based memorabilia business called More Than Sports is selling two different signed photos of Javon Bullard’s hit on Marvin Harrison Jr. that knocked the OSU wideout unconscious during the Buckeyes’ College Football Playoff loss late in the third quarter on New Year’s Eve.

On both photos, which are being sold for $129.99 each, Bullard has inscribed the phrase “Night Night” along with his signature.

Oh, the humanity.  That ought to fuel enough outrage to keep the Buckeyes going for months.


Filed under Big Ten Football, Georgia Football, It's Just Bidness

“I think he (signed with Florida) along the lines of good faith, realized that good faith wasn’t quite as good as he thought…”

Hoo, boy, this story in The Athletic about Jaden Rashada’s NIL deal with Florida ($$) has a little something for everybody in it — a school desperate for a big score on the recruiting trail, a family clearly looking for a big financial score and a player caught in the middle who was overwhelmed.  Sounds like the perfect ingredients for a TV movie of the week.

You should read the whole thing, if you subscribe, but I’ll mention a couple of points here for context.  First, Mandel and Staples reviewed the contract Rashada signed with Gator Collective.  It’s pretty unbelievable.

It called for a $500,000 up-front payment. After that, his payments would increase from $250,000 a month as a freshman, to $291,666.66 a month as a sophomore, to $375,000 a month as a junior, rounded out with $195,833.33 monthly payments as a senior, so long as he fulfilled the following obligations:

  • Residence in Gainesville, Fla.
  • At least one branded Twitter post and one branded Instagram post per month.
  • Up to eight fan engagement events per year. These could include in-person appearances, social media engagements, video conferences or interviews. None would last longer than two hours.
  • Autograph up to 15 pieces of merchandise per year.

At least until you get to the fine print.

The contract also states that the collective can “in its sole and absolute discretion” terminate the agreement “without penalty or further obligation.”

That should have sent up a major flare to Rashada’s advisors about the confidence the collective had in carrying through its obligations.  That would be these guys:

Rashada, in switching from Miami to Florida, also swapped NIL advisers. The new representatives were Jackson Zager and Tommy Thomsen, founders of an agency called JTM Sports. Zager is a sophomore at SMU; Thomsen is a commercial real estate agent. The agency lists Heitner’s firm as its “affiliate law firm” and advertises that Heitner “assists JTM and our clients in all legal matters and dispute resolution.”

One little catch there:  Heitner also advises Gator Collective.

“I was retained by (Gator Collective CEO) Eddie Rojas back in 2021,” Heitner said. “From time to time, I’ve been asked questions relating to the NCAA rules and Florida state law with regard to what can or shouldn’t be done. I was not asked in this instance to provide any legal advice, diligence or guidance in any respect with regard to this transaction.”

Hair, meet split.

Heitner seems happier about the deal than Rashada.

Anyway, as you can probably guess, Gator Collective never actually got around to getting any payment guarantees from donors for the deal.  They terminated the arrangement two days after the first payment was due.

Rashada’s got a scholarship at Arizona State.  Florida’s got a lot of egg all over its snout.  Seems fair.


UPDATE:  Good point here.

Florida might become the first target of the new “NIL presumption”.

Dave Chappelle Snl GIF by Saturday Night Live


Filed under Gators, Gators..., It's Just Bidness, Recruiting

There’s a fine line between hypocrisy and re-invention

How it started.

Alabama head coach Nick Saban provided harsh criticism of recruiting efforts by Texas A&M and coach Jimbo Fisher versus those of the Crimson Tide. While speaking at an event celebrating the 50-day countdown to the World Games in Birmingham, Saban reportedly claimed that Texas A&M “bought every player on their team” with NIL deals.

“I know the consequence is going to be difficult for the people who are spending tons of money to get players,” Saban said via “You read about it, you know who they are. We were second in recruiting last year. A&M was first. A&M bought every player on their team. Made a deal for name, image and likeness.

How it’s going.

Yea Alabama has launched as the NIL collective for Crimson Tide athletics, with the backing of football coach Nick Saban and athletic director Greg Byrne.

… Yea Alabama will have a three-pronged approach. Individuals who want to make tax-deductible contributions can contribute to Walk of Champions, a registered 501(c)3.

Fans will be able to join as subscribers, ranging from $18 to $150 monthly options. On the entity’s website it states 100% of Yea Alabama subscriptions will go to the athletes.

Tuscaloosa businesses will also be given the opportunity to join the cause, as Yea Alabama plans to help facilitate endorsement deals with athletes.

“I have always believed that our players should have the chance to benefit from their name, image and likeness,” Saban said in a statement. “Yea Alabama is an exciting new resource to help Crimson Tide student-athletes create value for themselves through a variety of NIL opportunities.

“The Alabama brand is one of the most powerful in sports, and our partnership with Yea Alabama provides exposure for our athletes that is unmatched in college athletics.”

To quote a head coach who once railed similarly about no-huddle offenses, “I just think there’s got to be some sense of fairness in terms of asking is this what we want football to be?”

I guess Saban just answered his own question.


Filed under It's Just Bidness, Nick Saban Rules, Recruiting

“It certainly doesn’t smell right.”

Just when you think collectives can’t be any more corrupt, along comes this news:

The Nevada Senate Education Committee sponsored Senate Bill No. 70, which was pre-filed Monday and referred to the Committee on Education with the potential to revise the state’s name, image and likeness legislation. If passed, the bill would make high-value NIL disclosures public and provide Secretary of State Francisco “Cisco” Aguilar with the bill’s enforcement capabilities.

“Well,” you might say, “that sounds pretty typical.  What’s the big deal?”

Glad you asked.

However, the authority proposed under the bill raises questions about potential or perceived conflicts of interest. Aguilar is a founder of the Las Vegas-based company Blueprint Sports.

Blueprint Sports’ website says it “powers the industry’s leading name, image and likeness (NIL) collectives for alumni, supporters, businesses and fans of student-athletes at their favorite universities.”

Blueprint supports at least 13 NIL collectives. They include Friends of The Pack at Nevada and Friends of UNILV at UNLV, which operate in the state of Nevada.

Aguilar, who was elected in 2022 and who took office on Jan. 2, would have the ability to investigate potential NIL violations under the cloak of confidentiality, issue subpoenas and impose sanctions.

Ah, Nevada.


Filed under It's Just Bidness, Political Wankery

“It’s crazy what some kids are asking for.”

Honestly, I’m trying to picture this scene and I’m having a hard time doing it, because I’m laughing so hard.

When asked about the portal, Curtis confirmed that Saban said this: “We lost 10 players and one starter to the portal this year. One of them wanted $500,000 and for us to get his girlfriend into law school at Alabama and pay for it. I showed him the door.”

Can you imagine having the stones to stroll into Saban’s office and demand that he get your girlfriend into law school?  I mean, Bryce Young, maybe.  But someone off of that offensive line?


Filed under It's Just Bidness, Nick Saban Rules

The next step in recruiting rankings

I have no idea what their methodology is in reporting this, but if you’re curious,’s team rankings include average NIL $.  Georgia is one of five teams with an average in excess of $100,000.


Filed under Georgia Football, It's Just Bidness, Recruiting

Gator Collective ain’t the only scam going in Gainesville.

How it started.

The Florida Gators have released the first-ever officially licensed athlete, school NFT. It’s only fitting that they made it of Florida legend Tim Tebow, one of the biggest icons in the school’s history.

The company that helped launch the NFT is named Campus Legends, a company co-founded by Tebow that is a marketplace for buying and selling “unique digital collectibles for collegiate athletes.”

How it’s going.

“NFT?  Shit, Gator, that’s all you had to say!”

I’m waiting for UF to announce its exciting foray into NIL crypto next.


Filed under Gators, Gators..., It's Just Bidness